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Voxs German Lopez is here to guide you through the Biden administrations burst of policymaking. .
A Republican win would havemajor implications for the states pandemic response policies over the next year . But the biggest consequence could be national: The United States Senate is divided 50-50, and the oldest senator is 88-year-old Dianne Feinstein of California. If she were to die in office, as , Californias governor would choose her replacement and a Republican governor could flip control of the Senate to Mitch McConnells GOP.
Democrats are optimistic that all of these challenges will be overcome, and that the fundamental partisan dynamics of California will reassert themselves and save Newsom. Most polls show Newsom narrowly leading on the recall question. But that outcome can hardly be taken for granted. In oddly-timed elections, weird things can happen, as Democrats learned when Scott Brown won a Massachusetts Senate seat in January 2010, or as Republicans learned from Doug Joness Alabama Senate seat victory in December 2017.
So there is a possible slow-motion disaster unfolding in California for Democrats but theres also still time for them to avert it, if they can communicate the stakes to their base voters.
What Happens After Sept 14
Counties can begin releasing results on election night at 8 p.m.;
Like other elections in California, the race may not be decided on election night if there are still a large number of outstanding mail-in ballots.;
Counties must finish counting ballots and certify their results by Oct. 14. The Secretary of State will certify the results on Oct. 22. If the governor is recalled, he will need to vacate the office by that date and the winning replacement candidate will be sworn in.;
If Newsom is recalled, his replacement will finish the rest of his term, which ends in early 2023. They would have to run for re-election in 2022 if they want to stay in office after that.
What Do Party Preferences Mean When Listed With Candidates’ Names On The Ballot What Are The Qualified Political Parties And Abbreviations Of Those Party Names
The term “party preference” is now used in place of the term “party affiliation.” A candidate must indicate his or her preference or lack of preference for a qualified political party. If the candidate has a qualified political party preference that qualified political party will be indicated by the candidate’s name on the ballot. If a candidate does not have a qualified political party preference, “Party Preference: None” will be indicated by the candidate’s name on the ballot.
Similarly, voters who were previously known as “decline-to-state” voters are now known as having “no party preference” or known as “NPP” voters.
Abbreviations for the qualified political parties are:
- DEM = Democratic Party
How Are Primary Elections Conducted In California
All candidates for voter-nominated offices are listed on one ballot and only the top two vote-getters in the primary election regardless of party preference – move on to the general election. Write-in candidates for voter-nominated offices can only run in the primary election. A write-in candidate will only move on to the general election if the candidate is one of the top two vote-getters in the primary election.
Prior to the Top Two Candidates Open Primary Act, the top vote-getter from each qualified political party, as well as any write-in candidate who received a certain percentage of votes, moved on to the general election.
The Top Two Candidates Open Primary Act does not apply to candidates running for U.S. President, county central committee, or local office.
Who Can Run In A Recall
Candidates to replace the governor must be U.S. citizens registered to vote in California, and must pay a filing fee of about $4,000 or submit signatures from 7,000 supporters. They cannot be convicted of certain felonies, and they cannot be the governor up for recall. They have until 59 days before the election to file.
The ballot asks voters two questions: Should the governor be recalled? And if so, who should be the new governor? If the majority of voters say no to the first question, the second is moot. But if more than 50 percent vote yes, the challenger with the most votes becomes the next governor.Critics of the recall contend this is a major flaw because 49.9 percent of the voters could theoretically vote to keep Mr. Newsom, and he could still lose and be replaced by a challenger whose plurality makes up a far smaller sliver of voters. A legal challenge to this effect is pending in federal court in Los Angeles.
The 2003 winner, Mr. Schwarzenegger, had only 48.6 percent of the vote.
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Newsom Has Been Hit With A Perfect Storm Of Bad Timing
At any given moment, there are always recall petitions circulating against every California governor. But they generally fail to obtain the number needed to secure a ballot line in the limited time made available . The Republicans who began a recall drive against Newsom because of his generally progressive views got very lucky in two respects. First, a state judge gave them a four-month extension of the qualification deadline because of the difficulties in signature collection created by the COVID-19 pandemic, which was a bit ironic since Newsoms support for COVID-19 prevention policies soon became central to the recall campaign.
But what really sent the campaign into overdrive was a gaffe committed by the governor on November 6, 2020, when he violated his own policies restricting indoor gatherings by attending a birthday party for a wealthy lobbyist friend at one of the states most exclusive restaurants, the French Laundry, in the Napa wine region. Aside from Republicans, small-business owners and public-school parents who were already chafing at Newsoms stay-at-home orders and restrictions on in-person instruction exploded in anger at his apparent hypocrisy, and the petition campaign reached its goals with relative ease.
Why Isnt Californias Lieutenant Governor Automatically Made Governor After A Recall
In some states, such as Oregon and Michigan, if a governor is recalled by voters, the lieutenant governor automatically gets the job. But California law states that voters must choose who replaces the governor in an election.
Of the 19 states that allow recalls of state officials, most leave the choice of replacement in the hands of voters.
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How Californias Gavin Newsom Could Lose His Job To A Republican In A Recall
How does a relatively popular Democratic governor in one of the bluest states in the country find himself at serious risk of losing his job to a Trump-supporting Republican?
The answer in the case of Californias Gavin Newsom is a mix of excitement among conservatives, apathy from everyone else, a confusing process and tensions heightened by the pandemic. Californians will vote by Sept. 14 on whether to kick Newsom out of office three years into his first term. If they do, the candidate currently most likely to replace him is an anti-mask-mandate conservative radio host who cuts against the states liberal slant.
Heres what you need to know to follow the California gubernatorial recall election.
Whos Running In Newsom Recall Politicians Activists Californians Of All Stripes
Larry Elder: A conservative talk radio host based in Los Angeles. Compared to other candidates, Elder jumped into the race late but has surged in fundraising, bringing in nearly $4.5 million in July. The longtime broadcaster is an ardent supporter of former President Donald Trump. He has said the minimum wage should start at $0 and be negotiated between workers and employers.
Kevin Faulconer: Before the recall, the former mayor of San Diego was widely seen as a Republican frontrunner to challenge Newsom in 2022. Faulconer has campaigned on his experience leading one of Californias largest cities and working with Democrats on the San Diego City Council. The Republican has proposed zeroing out income taxes for the first $50,000 in earnings. He also says he would increase funding for wildfire prevention.
John Cox: The San Diego businessman faced Newsom in the 2018 governors race and lost by a historic margin. Cox is self-funding his recall bid and has brought props on his statewide tour, including a live bear and an eight-foot ball of trash. Like Faulconer, the CPA and business owner has also proposed a large tax cut for Californians. In a recent debate, he advocated for the completion of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Former Congressman Doug Ose dropped out Aug. 17 after experiencing a heart attack.
What Are The Key Issues Driving The Recall
Initially, the Republicans who started the recall disagreed with Mr. Newsom on issues like the death penaltyand his opposition to President Donald Trumps policies. The effort was widely viewed as a long shot.
Then two particular factors boosted the campaign: A judge allowed more time for leaders of the recall to gather signatures because of pandemic lockdowns. And growing frustration among some Californians over health restrictions came to a head when Mr. Newsom was seen dining maskless with lobbyists at an expensive, exclusive Napa Valley restaurant called the French Laundryafter asking Californians to wear masks and stay home.
As the pandemic dragged on, recall supporters focused their arguments on the governors response, criticizing it as overly restrictive. Prolonged school closuresdrew ire during the last school year, as did pandemic unemployment fraud.
More recently, proponents have argued that broader social ills such as homelessness have worsened during Mr. Newsoms tenure, that Democrats have de facto one-party rule in California and that the high cost of livingis driving Californians out.
Mr. Newsoms Democratic allies charge that the effort is an undemocratic far-right power grab by Trumpian extremists who would otherwise never see a Republican elected to Californias top state office.
Why Pick On Newsom
Mr. Newsom, 53, the former mayor of San Francisco, has long been a favorite target of Republicans.
His liberal pedigree and deep Democratic connections push an array of G.O.P. buttons. His aunt, for instance, was married for a time to Speaker Nancy Pelosis brother-in-law. Mr. Newsom, a wine merchant, got his start in politics and business with support from the wealthy Getty family. In 2004, he and his first wife, the cable news legal commentator Kimberly Guilfoyle, appeared in a spread for Harpers Bazaar shot at the Getty Villa and titled The New Kennedys.
As mayor, Mr. Newsom made headlines for sanctioning same-sex marriage licenses before they were legal. As governor, he has remained a progressive standard-bearer. He championed ballot initiatives that legalized recreational marijuana and outlawed possession of the high-capacity magazines often used in mass shootings. One of his first acts as governor was to declare a moratorium on executions.
Mr. Newsom is now married to Jennifer Siebel Newsom, a filmmaker, and is the father of four small children. Ms. Guilfoyle is Donald Trump Jr.s girlfriend.
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Isnt It Hard To Recall A Democrat In California
California is less liberal in the aggregate than its reputation. Some six million Californians voted for Donald J. Trump in the 2020 election. Thats roughly quadruple the number of signatures proponents needed to put a recall onto the ballot, and those were the voters who were targeted.
And increasingly, California races have drawn national money and interest as both parties have come to view the Democratic-dominated state as a stand-in for liberal governance on the national level.
But Democratic voters outnumber Republicans nearly 2-1 in California. The math alone gives Democrats an advantage statewide.
And although Mr. Heatlie and his group describe themselves as mainstream, a significant portion of the energy behind the recall is coming from the fringes. Early rallies to promote it were heavily populated by Proud Boys and anti-vaccination activists. Backers of Mr. Heatlies campaign have made social media posts bashing immigrants and depicting the governor as Hitler.
Microchip all illegal immigrants. It works! Just ask Animal control, Mr. Heatlie himself wrote in a 2019 Facebook post. He now says that the remark was a conversation starter that he did not intend to be taken literally. Polls have shown Mr. Newsom holding his seat handily among all voters, but it is unclear who will vote in this unusual, off-year special election. Polls of likely voters show a far tighter race.
Should California Republicans Unite Behind Larry Elder
The radio host is leading GOP polls ahead of the recall election
California Republicans are not falling in line behind a single candidate in the recall against Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom.
The California Republican party voted not to endorse any of the candidates running in the states upcoming recall during a Saturday morning online convention. The decision comes as right-wing firebrand Larry Elder has surged in recent polling, overshadowing the establishment favorite, former San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer. The candidate who received the endorsement would have been given additional funding and campaign infrastructure. Instead, none of the candidates on the September 14 ballot will have the partys backing.
Originally, party delegates were set to choose between four candidates in different voting rounds where each candidate would be eliminated until the final round. To receive the state partys endorsement, the candidate must meet a 60 percent support threshold among the delegates. Twenty-four hours before the convention, however, party leaders began lobbying delegates to scrap the vote and issue no endorsement, GOP state officials told The Spectator.
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The Mail Ballot Factor Is A Wild Card
Early on, California election authorities decided to proactively send mail ballots to all registered voters, just as they did in the pandemic general election of 2020. They can be returned via enclosed postage paid envelopes or dropped off at voting centers on September 14. So, if California Democrats do become motivated to vote, it wont be hard for them to do so. And you do have to wonder if Donald Trumps demonization of mail ballots during and after the 2020 presidential election might still inhibit Republicans from voting that way, even if there remains an option for turning in ballots in person.
Republicans Introduce 253 Bills To Restrict Voting Rights In States Across The Us
Republican lawmakers in 43 states have introduced a total of 253 bills aimed at restricting access to the ballot box for tens of millions of people. Republican-controlled states, including Southern states that employed lynch law terror to block African Americans from voting during the decades-long period of Jim Crow segregation, are flooding their legislatures with measures to effectively disenfranchise working class, poor and minority voters.
The laws largely focus on tightening voter ID requirements, purging voter rolls and restricting absentee and mail-in ballots.
In the United States, state governments have the authority to oversee elections and determine election procedures and rules, including for national elections. Within each state, individual counties have a great deal of latitude in the conduct of elections.
Republicans control both the lower and upper legislative houses in 36 of the 50 states, and both the legislatures and governorships in 23 states, making it very possible for far-reaching barriers to the ballot box to be imposed across much of the country.
Despite opening the door for a return to restrictive and discriminatory voting practices, the 2013 ruling met with little resistance on the part of the Democratic Party. Neither the Obama White House nor the congressional Democrats mounted any serious effort to reverse the evisceration of the Voting Rights Act by enacting new legislation in the years since the reactionary Shelby ruling.
What If Governor Newsom Is Recalled But He Still Has More Support Than Any Challenger On The Ballot
It doesnt matter. The recall question is determined by majority vote. If more than 50 percent of the voters vote yes on the recall, Mr. Newsom must step down as governor.
The replacement question is determined by who gets the most votes among the challengers on the ballot. So 49.9 percent of the voters can back Mr. Newsom, and he can still lose to someone who is supported by only, say, 20 percent of the electorate. On the replacement question, the winner does not need a majority to be named the next governor.
What Parties And Others Are Saying
President Biden:Biden released a statement saying registered California voters should vote no on the recall election by September 14 and keep California moving forward.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi:Pelosi said that recalling Newsom would “not good for children and other living things,” and urged Californians to vote “no” in the election.
Los Angeles Times Editorial Board: The Times Editorial Board urged voters to say “no” to Question 1. The boards suggestion for a replacement? Former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer “the least terrible of all … bad options.” The board, which is a group of opinion journalists who are not part of Times’ news coverage, said voters should not skip Question 2: Leaving it blank “would hand the decision-making power to others who do vote and those voters may be uninformed, irrationally angry and looking for someone to take a far-right turn on issues like climate change, environmental protection, civil rights, policing and vaccination. Thats too great a gamble. Were left to conclude that voters who oppose the recall should also vote for a replacement even if they have to hold their noses to do so.”
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