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Politics Gavin Newsom beats back Republican recall effort, remains governor of California

09:50  15 september  2021
09:50  15 september  2021 Source:   salon.com

California recall election: Will the state keep or remove Gov. Gavin Newsom? Results could take time.

  California recall election: Will the state keep or remove Gov. Gavin Newsom? Results could take time. Tuesday is decision day in California and voters in the Golden State will decide whether they will keep Gov. Gavin Newsom or remove him from office.It's been a winding path to get here, but polls show the Democrat is likely to keep his job leading a state that is known nationally as a liberal trendsetter.

Gavin Newsom wearing a suit and tie © Provided by Salon Gavin Newsom

California Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks during a press conference at The Unity Council on May 10, 2021 in Oakland, California. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Less than one hour after polls closed on Election Day, California's Democratic governor, Gavin Newsom, declared victory over a multi-million dollar recall effort.

With 59% of precincts reporting, the Associated Press called the election for Newsom with 66.8% of voters — far above the requisite simple majority needed to survive — voting "No" on the question to recall the governor. It looks like the recall effort was not even close.

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

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

"Tonight I'm humble, grateful, but resolved in the spirit of my political hero: Robert Kennedy."

Far from striking a celebratory tone, Newsom acknowledged that his victory is tempered by a "spirit of reconciling" with the Californians — led by Republican leaders in the Golden State — who voted to oust him from office.

The recall was originally launched back in June of last year due to grievances over Newsom's handling of the COVID-19 crisis, which ravaged a number of high-density cities throughout the state, namely Los Angeles. Frustrations grew largely out of Newsom's decision to quickly enforce public health precautions, like mandatory school shutdowns and business closures. However, Newsom implemented these measures with a relatively on-again, off-again approach, leaving many Californian parents and business owners upset over the lack of state consistency.

How the recall election against California Gavin Newsom will work

  How the recall election against California Gavin Newsom will work The election will be just the second recall election for governor in state history. The other took place in 2003 when Democratic Governor Gray Davis was recalled and Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger became governor. Here's what you need to know about the recall. How did we get here?In February 2020, a group called the California Patriot Coalition began circulating a petition to recall Newsom, citing his administration's policies on immigration, homelessness, the state's drought emergency and taxes. Newsom had faced five previous recall attempts, but such petitions require 1.

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The effort reached fever pitch back in November, when Newsom was exposed dining out at a Michelin star restaurant in California's wine country, apparently flouting his own COVID-19 guidelines. By April of this year, state officials announced that the recall effort garnered enough signatures (1.5 million) from California voters to prompt an official ballot vote.

California voters were faced with 45 different candidates in the election, with Larry Elder right-wing talk radio host Larry Elder as the frontrunner by way of polling and fundraising.

Elder has a past besieged by controversy. Throughout the years, the host has made numerous incendiary comments about women, race, and LGBTQ+ issues, once even suggesting that the descendants of slave owners should benefit from reparations. The radio host has also been accused of sexual harassment on multiple occasions.

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.

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Elder has repeatedly backed Donald Trump's baseless claims of widespread election fraud, and this month propounded similar skepticism about the California gubernatorial recall election – of which he is a part – telling voters to expect election "shenanigans."

"We may have defeated Trump but Trumpism is not dead in this country," Newsom said after the race was called for him, describe the past year as a "remarkable moment in our nation's history."

Newsom's attempted recall marks the second of its kind in the state's history when it comes to recalls that reached an election. According to The New York Times, state budget officials estimate that the total price tag of this year's recall hovers around $276 million. The Times reported that Newsom raised a total of $70 million to fend off the recall, allowing him to saturate the airwaves with far more advertisements than his competitors.

Expectedly, policies around COVID-19 remained hot button issues in the recall election. Over the last year, Newsom has aggressively pushed for pro-vaccine policies, mandating a vaccine requirement for K-12 public school staff and other state employees.

Newsom first entered public office back in 1998, when he filled a vacancy in San Francisco's Board of Supervisors. Later, at 36, he was elected as the youngest mayor in the city's history. He earned a reputation as a progressive princeling back in 2004, when he ordered a city-county clerk to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples back in 2004, just four years before the 2008 passage of Proposition 8.

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.

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