The Recall Election Is Only A Few Weeks Away - If You Didn’t Know
• Upcoming recall election something to think about now and for the future of California.
California, typically a heavily Democratic state, has turned into a battleground state as it prepares for a rare gubernatorial recall election. For just the second time in state history, the governor, Democrat Gavin Newsom, will face a recall, which will take place on Tuesday, Sept. 14.
A recall election is when a governor or other elected official has to face an election during his or her term. Gov. Newsom’s term began in January 2019, meaning that his four-year term runs until January 2023. However, by gathering 1,719,000 signatures from California voters, recall organizers forced the September election.
The recall process is a complicated process in the state of California. Just 19 states allow their citizens to recall, or remove, elected state officials mid-term.
California’s recall ballot looks different than many states. Instead of the incumbent governor going head-to-head with the other candidates (like he would in a regular election year), voters are simply asked whether or not they wish to remove the governor. If more than 50 percent vote yes, for his removal, Gov. Newsom will lose his job. Then, at the bottom of the ballot, voters are asked which candidate they wish would replace Gov. Newsom if he is removed from office. All voters can vote on this section of the ballot, even if they do not wish to recall the governor.
Because of the unorthodox election style, 46 candidates appear on the bottom half of the ballot this September. However, a candidate does not need 50 percent of the votes to win the governorship.
If Gov. Newsom is removed, his replacement will likely receive only about 20 percent of the votes and serve the rest of his term, meaning he would face reelection in November 2022.
Every Californian has been sent a vote by mail ballot for this election. Voters can also choose to vote at a polling site on or before Sept. 14. Los Angeles County polling places can be found at the county’s website, lavote.net.
Polls show that the September election will likely be very close. As of August 25, the Real Clear Politics average of polls shows Gov. Newsom being recalled by 0.5 percent, obviously very close and well within the margin of error. If the governor is recalled, Republican talk show host Larry Elder leads the Real Clear Politics average to replace Newsom by 10.8 percent.
On Sept. 14, California will get its first competitive statewide election in many years as Gov. Newsom fights to prevent the deep blue state of California from flipping red in 2021.