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Politics Newsom's nightmare: How one November day fueled the recall

07:10  08 september  2021
07:10  08 september  2021 Source:   msn.com

California recall voters so far largely Democratic and older

  California recall voters so far largely Democratic and older LOS ANGELES (AP) — The critical question left in the California recall election that could remove Gov. Gavin Newsom isn’t whether someone likes the first-term Democrat — it’s who is going to take the time to vote. At this point, it’s all about turnout. Mail-in ballots went to all 22 million registered voters in mid-August for the unusual, late-summer election. More than 4.6 million have been returned so far and while it's not known how theyAt this point, it’s all about turnout.

Newsom isn’t going down without a fight, and in recent weeks he’s pumped out millions of dollars worth of attack ads against Elder and his closest rivals, and leaned on his Washington connections to rally his liberal base. Sen. Elizabeth Warren stumped for Newsom in Los Angeles on Saturday, but her message – that Elder would roll back the state’s pro-LGBT, pro-abortion policies – was overshadowed by Newsom ’ s own demeanor. California Gov. @GavinNewsom : "Women are smarter in politics, smarter in civics, they're smarter in economics. Women rule." pic.twitter.com/HIrDpBF 1 JA.

As the pandemic- fueled campaign to recall Gov. Gavin Newsom of California heads into its last week, its lead proponent said he has been sidelined with the coronavirus. Orrin Heatlie, 52, a retired Republican sheriff’s sergeant from Yolo County, said he was at home recovering from a bout of the In November , a judge granted them an extension to continue circulating petitions because Mr. Newsom ’ s health orders had made it harder to gather signatures. That extension allowed Mr. Heatlie’s group to gather the nearly 1 .5 million signatures required to bring the proposed recall to a vote — an effort that

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — On a single day last November, two events helped set the course for just the second recall election against a governor in California history: Gov. Gavin Newsom dined with 11 friends and lobbyists at one of the country’s most expensive restaurants as he pleaded with Californians to stay home, while those looking to kick him out of office won four more months to qualify for the ballot.

FILE — In this June 26, 2020, file photo, California Gov. Gavin Newsom displays a face mask as he calls on people wear them to fight the coronavirus, during a news conference in Rancho Cordova, Calif. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history, and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021. The coronavirus has been a dominating factor in the recall, which was first launched last year. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, Pool, File) © Provided by Associated Press FILE — In this June 26, 2020, file photo, California Gov. Gavin Newsom displays a face mask as he calls on people wear them to fight the coronavirus, during a news conference in Rancho Cordova, Calif. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history, and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021. The coronavirus has been a dominating factor in the recall, which was first launched last year. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, Pool, File) In this Nov. 9, 2020 file photo California Gov. Gavin Newsom conducts his weekly news conference in this photo from an internet stream provided by the Office of the Governor in Sacramento, Calif.  Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history, and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021. The coronavirus has been a dominating factor in the recall, which was first launched last year(Office of the Governor via AP, File) © Provided by Associated Press In this Nov. 9, 2020 file photo California Gov. Gavin Newsom conducts his weekly news conference in this photo from an internet stream provided by the Office of the Governor in Sacramento, Calif. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history, and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021. The coronavirus has been a dominating factor in the recall, which was first launched last year(Office of the Governor via AP, File)

Photos of the maskless dinner showed the Democratic governor going against what he had been urging for months to combat the coronavirus: don’t gather in groups, keep your distance, wear a mask. That it was happening at the French Laundry — where the cheapest meal is $350 — fueled the idea Newsom was out of touch. The dinner turned up the heat on the fledgling recall, and the extra time allowed it to reach full boil.

Here's what to know about the California recall election that could remove Gov. Gavin Newsom

  Here's what to know about the California recall election that could remove Gov. Gavin Newsom The California gubernatorial recall effort grew into a threat to Gavin Newsom amid the coronavirus pandemic.The California Democrat is facing a Sept. 14 special election that could make him just the third state governor in U.S. history to be removed from office through a recall.

Last updated: September 3, 2021 A recall election seeking to remove California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) will take place on September 14, 2021. The recall election will present voters with two questions. The first will ask whether Newsom should be recalled from the office of governor.

Newsom (pictured at a Sunday rally in Santa Ana) argues that Elder' s leadership would be an attack on California' s values and 'the things we hold dear as a state'. Newsom , whose event was hosted by African American Voter Registration and Education Project, used the rally as an opportunity to 'paint a dire picture' of what California would look like under Elder' s leadership.

By March, organizers had more than the 1.5 million signatures they needed to force a vote on whether to remove the first-term Democratic governor in the nation's biggest blue state.

“We had a perfect storm with the judge's ruling, with the French Laundry incident, with the greater environment of COVID and the economic disaster," said Mindy Romero, director of the Center for Inclusive Democracy at the University of Southern California.

FILE — In this Nov. 21, 2020 file photo demonstrators shout slogans while carrying a sign calling for a recall on Gov. Gavin Newsom during a protest against a stay-at-home order amid the COVID-19 pandemic in Huntington Beach, Calif. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history. His response to the coronavirus has been a dominating force in the race. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File) © Provided by Associated Press FILE — In this Nov. 21, 2020 file photo demonstrators shout slogans while carrying a sign calling for a recall on Gov. Gavin Newsom during a protest against a stay-at-home order amid the COVID-19 pandemic in Huntington Beach, Calif. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history. His response to the coronavirus has been a dominating force in the race. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

Voters will have the final say next Tuesday. A majority of voters would need to mark “yes" to oust Newsom more than a year before his term ends.

California's Newsom votes as recall against him nears end

  California's Newsom votes as recall against him nears end SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom voted to keep himself in office Friday, days before the recall election against him comes to a close. The Democratic governor cast his ballot at an early voting center in Sacramento alongside his wife, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, and took a glimpse of her vote. “I think we're gonna be alright," he joked. The last day to vote is Tuesday, and at least a third of California's 22 million registeredThe Democratic governor cast his ballot at an early voting center in Sacramento alongside his wife, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, and took a glimpse of her vote.

In February, Newsom had a 16-point lead , with 56 percent of voters saying that would vote "no" on the recall effort. But the race has tightened dramatically in the ensuing months ( one recent survey even had Newsom losing outright), and the absurd mechanics of the recall process mean that there is real How could this be happening in a state that Joe Biden carried by 29 points over Donald Trump? While the recall effort began before the pandemic, Newsom ' s most consequential gaffe was being spotted unmasked during a lobbyist's birthday party at the posh French Laundry restaurant in Napa Valley in

Gavin Newsom ’ s camp has one message for Democrats considering a California recall bid: Don’t even think about it. The mere hint of a candidacy draws immediate condemnation from Newsom attack dog Sean Clegg, while other Newsom surrogates are making clear publicly and privately that any After former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa called for California schools to reopen immediately amid talk of a potential candidacy, Clegg last week fired off a clear rebuke: “My old friend Antonio will embarrass himself and forever poison his legacy if he runs,” he wrote. “That’s how you lose,” Clegg, a

If they do, they would chose from a list of 46 replacement candidates — many of them unknown, but others with some recognition, including conservative talk show host Larry Elder and former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer. Reality TV star Caitlyn Jenner also is running but has failed to gain traction.

FILE - This Thursday, March 19, 2020 file photo, is The French Laundry restaurant in Yountville, Calif. California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday, Nov. 16, 2020, apologized for what he called © Provided by Associated Press FILE - This Thursday, March 19, 2020 file photo, is The French Laundry restaurant in Yountville, Calif. California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday, Nov. 16, 2020, apologized for what he called "a bad mistake" in attending a birthday party that broke the very rules that he has been preaching to slow the spread of the coronavirus. He has suffered severe political backlash since it surfaced that he and his wife attended the party Nov. 6 with a dozen friends at the pricy French Laundry restaurant in wine country north of San Francisco. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history, and the last day to vote is Sept. 14. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg,File)

Because so many people are running, the winner would likely become the next governor of the nation's most populous state with 25% or less of the votes. That's a far cry from the landslide that swept Newsom into office in 2018.

What Makes Newsom's Recall Election Different From Davis' 2003 Ouster

  What Makes Newsom's Recall Election Different From Davis' 2003 Ouster A Democratic strategist who advised former California Governor Gray Davis said there are "several" differences between the two gubernatorial recall elections.Newsom and Davis, both Democrats, are the only California governors who have had to defend their seats through a recall election since the state adopted its recall process in 1911. While voters elected to remove Davis from office nearly 18 years ago, South said he believes the September 14 recall election "is going to be a blowout win for Newsom.

Paffrath accused Newsom of using the leading Republican candidate, conservative radio host Larry Elder, to "fear monger" and of pretending the recall effort hasn’t received support from Democrats. The recall effort follows months of criticisms of Newsom ’ s handling of the coronavirus pandemic and forest fires. He has also been accused of being out of touch with everyday Californians after he was caught eating lunch at a ritzy restaurant in violation of his own shutdown order and has accepted donations from large corporations after his policies left small businesses struggling to stay afloat.

Newsom focused mostly on actions he believes have positioned the state for a robust recovery and that blunt calls for him to be recalled . Gavin Newsom sought to rally a state worn down after a year of coronavirus lockdowns, record wildfires and unfathomable sickness and death, urging the nearly 40 million residents to “dream of brighter days ahead” while acknowledging his own mistakes that have put his political future on the line.

FILE - In this Nov. 6, 2018, file photo, then Lt. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, holds his son, Dutch, 2, as he waves to the crowd at an election night party in Los Angeles after being elected California's 40th. Newsom was accompanied by his wife, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, and their children. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history, and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021.(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File) © Provided by Associated Press FILE - In this Nov. 6, 2018, file photo, then Lt. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, holds his son, Dutch, 2, as he waves to the crowd at an election night party in Los Angeles after being elected California's 40th. Newsom was accompanied by his wife, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, and their children. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history, and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021.(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

In California, a state where ballot initiatives thrive, many governors have faced recall drives under a century-old reform that created a mechanism for voters to remove them mid-term. But only one other effort tapped into enough frustration to make the ballot: Voters recalled Democratic Gov. Gray Davis in 2003 over an energy crisis and replaced him with Arnold Schwarzenegger, the last California Republican to win statewide.

A loss for Newsom, 53, would be a shocking twist in his relatively charmed political career and would almost certainly install a Republican governor in the nation’s chief laboratory for progressive policies. A slight majority approve of his job handling, according to a recent poll from the Public Policy Institute of California that also shows the recall failing.

How Larry Elder has helped Gavin Newsom in California's recall election

  How Larry Elder has helped Gavin Newsom in California's recall election Earlier this year, when California Gov. Gavin Newsom was searching for the right message to convince disengaged Democrats to vote against the effort to oust him in Tuesday's recall election, it would have been impossible to imagine a more perfect foil than conservative talk radio host Larry Elder. © Ringo H.W. Chiu/AP California Gov. Gavin Newsom is photographed during a TV interview before a rally against the California gubernatorial recall election on Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021, in Sun Valley, California.

The results will be picked apart for clues on how voters are feeling heading into the 2022 midterm elections, when control of Congress and more than half of governorships are up for grabs.

“The outcome of this election is going to be fuel for 2022, period," Romero said.

Amateur political organizer Orrin Heatlie launched the recall in February 2020, before coronavirus became a full-fledged public health crisis in the United States. He was upset about Newsom's support for immigrants in the country illegally and other liberal policies.

By the time he began collecting signatures, the coronavirus dominated.

Newsom was the first governor to issue a statewide stay-at-home order, and when he dined at the French Laundry eight months later, the state had gone through whipsaw reopenings and closings that left small-business owners, parents of schoolchildren and others overwhelmed and confused.

FILE — In this March 27, 2021, file photo Orrin Heatlie, the main organizer for the Recall of California Gov. Newsom campaign, poses with a banner before recording a radio program at KABC radio station studio in Culver City, Calif. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history, and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021. The coronavirus has been a dominating factor in the recall, which was first launched last year. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File) © Provided by Associated Press FILE — In this March 27, 2021, file photo Orrin Heatlie, the main organizer for the Recall of California Gov. Newsom campaign, poses with a banner before recording a radio program at KABC radio station studio in Culver City, Calif. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history, and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021. The coronavirus has been a dominating factor in the recall, which was first launched last year. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

California was facing an uptick in infections and hospitalizations, and Newsom's administration was urging people not to gather with more than three households. While Napa County, where the French Laundry is located, allowed outdoor dining and limited indoor seating, the dinner party brought together a dozen people from more than three households.

On final day, Californians cast votes to keep, oust governor

  On final day, Californians cast votes to keep, oust governor California voters headed to the polls Tuesday to cast final ballots in an election focused on whether Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom should keep his job. Voters were asked to answer whether Newsom should stay in his post and if he doesn't, who should replace him. Dozens of candidates, most of them Republicans, are running for the seat. Many Californians voted in recent weeks by dropping off their ballots at designated boxes or by mail. Others chose to cast their ballots at vote centers on Tuesday, the last day to do so.

FILE - In this Thursday, April 1, 2021, file photo, In an effort to encourage Californians to get vaccinated Gov. Gavin Newsom receives inoculation from Dr. Mark Ghaly, Secretary, California Health and Human Services, at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza in Los Angeles. The coronavirus has been a dominating force in the Sept. 14, recall election Newsom is facing.(AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File) © Provided by Associated Press FILE - In this Thursday, April 1, 2021, file photo, In an effort to encourage Californians to get vaccinated Gov. Gavin Newsom receives inoculation from Dr. Mark Ghaly, Secretary, California Health and Human Services, at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza in Los Angeles. The coronavirus has been a dominating force in the Sept. 14, recall election Newsom is facing.(AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

News of the Nov. 6 dinner broke a week later, on a Friday when Newsom had no public appearances. In a statement, he said he and his wife “followed the restaurant’s health protocols and took safety precautions" but “should have modeled better behavior and not joined the dinner." When he appeared in public that Monday, Newsom said it was an “outdoor restaurant" but acknowledged he made a “bad mistake."

The next day, a Los Angeles TV station obtained cellphone photos calling into question that the dinner was outdoors. The photos showed the table set back in a space with three walls and one side open with a sliding glass door. Newsom and the other guests were sitting close together and not wearing masks.

FILE In this March 9, 2021 file photo, California Gov. Gavin Newsom delivers his State of the State address from an empty Dodger Stadium as his wife Jennifer Siebel Newsom listens, in Los Angeles. Newsom suffered severe political backlash after it surfaced that he and his wife attended a party Nov. 6, 2020, with a dozen friends at the pricy French Laundry restaurant in wine country north of San Francisco. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history  (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File) © Provided by Associated Press FILE In this March 9, 2021 file photo, California Gov. Gavin Newsom delivers his State of the State address from an empty Dodger Stadium as his wife Jennifer Siebel Newsom listens, in Los Angeles. Newsom suffered severe political backlash after it surfaced that he and his wife attended a party Nov. 6, 2020, with a dozen friends at the pricy French Laundry restaurant in wine country north of San Francisco. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File)

Anne Dunsmore, campaign manager for the pro-recall group Rescue California, said it reinforced the narrative that Newsom says one thing and does another. It also aligned with the image that Newsom's detractors have pushed — that he's an out-of-touch politician.

Gov. Gavin Newsom easily survives California recall election, AP projects

  Gov. Gavin Newsom easily survives California recall election, AP projects California Governor Gavin Newsom withstood a recall election on Tuesday in a closely-watched race that drew national attention and campaign visits from President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, NBC News, the Associated Press projected less than an hour after polls closed in the state. Not only did COVID-19 rank as the No. 1 issue on voters’ minds, ahead of homelessness, wildfires, crime and the economy, but just three in 10 California voters said Newsom’s pandemic policies were too strict.

“The French Laundry was an incredible boost to the effort," Dunsmore said.

The recall campaign similarly tagged Newsom as elitist when his children returned to class in person at a private school while most public school students were stuck with virtual learning.

Ace Smith, Newsom's longtime political consultant, disputes the dinner's importance in the recall's march to the ballot. He views the presidential election, also that November, as an important marker, saying Donald Trump's loss created fresh anger for the recall campaign to seize on. Six million people in California voted for Trump.

FILE - In this March 26, 2020, file photo, an indoors sitting bar is closed inside the Gelson's Market in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles.   Newsom suffered political backlash after it surfaced that he and his wife attended a party Nov. 6, 2020, with a dozen friends at the pricy French Laundry restaurant in wine country north of San Francisco. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File) © Provided by Associated Press FILE - In this March 26, 2020, file photo, an indoors sitting bar is closed inside the Gelson's Market in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles. Newsom suffered political backlash after it surfaced that he and his wife attended a party Nov. 6, 2020, with a dozen friends at the pricy French Laundry restaurant in wine country north of San Francisco. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

“They realized that they had bottled up this intense anger among the Trump base, and the trick is they only needed a fraction of the Trump base to get this thing qualified" for the ballot, Smith said.

Neither explanation would have mattered had recall organizers not won four more months to pitch voters. A judge granted the extra time because the coronavirus stalled traditional in-person signature gathering outside stores or at farmers markets.

Newsom's team never appealed the judge's decision, a move widely seen as a tactical mistake. Then-Secretary of State Alex Padilla had said recall organizers were not showing signs of a serious campaign.

FILE — In this April 7, 2020 file photo food is loaded into vehicles at a food distribution center in the Crenshaw district of Los Angeles.   Gov. Gavin Newsom  suffered political backlash after it surfaced that he and his wife attended a party Nov. 6, 2020, with a dozen friends at the pricy French Laundry restaurant in wine country north of San Francisco. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021.AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez,File) © Provided by Associated Press FILE — In this April 7, 2020 file photo food is loaded into vehicles at a food distribution center in the Crenshaw district of Los Angeles. Gov. Gavin Newsom suffered political backlash after it surfaced that he and his wife attended a party Nov. 6, 2020, with a dozen friends at the pricy French Laundry restaurant in wine country north of San Francisco. Newsom is facing the second recall of a governor in California history and the last day to vote is Sept. 14, 2021.AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez,File)

The judge sided with recall organizers in a tentative ruling, and neither side showed up to argue it in court on Nov. 6, making it final.

The two main recall committees raised roughly $2 million in November and December, five times what the effort had raised before, and ultimately collected 1.7 million valid signatures.

Newsom launched his “Stop the Republican Recall" campaign in March, weeks before the signature gathering ended, painting the effort as one driven by Trump-supporting extremists. He's made the state's response to the pandemic and the economic fallout a central theme of his campaign.

The highly contagious delta variant blunted his early message of California “roaring back," and in the final weeks before the election, he's warning that the choice before voters is “a matter of life and death."

Elder is the target of much of Democrats' attention. They warn the conservative talk radio host would roll back mask and vaccine mandates and reverse progress on a host of liberal issues.

It's part of a calculation by Newsom's team to turn the recall from a referendum on the governor and his actions into a choice between Democratic and Republican values.

“If you sit around and let it become a referendum on the person in office, it doesn't matter how good or how positive they are, you're always at a disadvantage because you're playing defense," Smith said. “We need to be in a place, very simply, where we're playing offense."

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See AP’s complete coverage of the California recall election: https://apnews.com/hub/california-recall

Gavin Newsom Survives Recall, Crushes Trumpism in California .
The Democratic governor has, for months, characterized the recall targeting his office as an effort driven by Trump supporters.CNN, Fox News and the Associated Press have all called the election for Newsom, with 67.4 percent voting against the recall with about 61 percent of votes counted, as of 11:54 p.m. ET.

usr: 1
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