California Gov. Gavin Newsom says recall effort against him is unfair

California Gov. Gavin Newsom said the recall effort against him, if successful, would have impacts will be felt ‘across the country’ by causing a ‘weaponization’ of the recall process.

Newsom’s comments came during an interview with the editorial boards of California newspapers – including The Sacramento Bee – on July 30.

When asked what was at stake in the recall, Newson responded; ‘My sense is, trying to be as objective as someone who is the target of this recall as I possibly can be, I think it will be quite pronounced for many, many years.

‘I think it will be felt all across the country. I think people haven’t really thought that through. I don’t think they’re asking that question. I don’t think the national Democratic Party is asking themselves that question.’

California Gov. Gavin Newsom said the recall effort against him, if successful, would have impacts will be felt ‘across the country’ by causing a ‘weaponization’ of the recall process

Newsom added that being the second incumbent governor of California recalled in the last 20 years would encourage ‘the weaponization’ of the recall process ‘even more than it currently is.’

California will hold a recall election on September 14 after petitions qualified for the measure to be added to the ballot after receiving more than 1.5 million signatures from voters, state election officials announced in April.

Newsom faced fierce criticism from Republicans relating to the state’s response to COVID-19, crime rates and homelessness.   

Since 1913, there have been 179 recall attempts of state elected officials in California, according to the office of the California Secretary of State

Of those, 11 recall efforts collected enough signatures to qualify for the ballot and though only six lawmakers have been removed from office.

If the recall effort is successful, Newsom would become only the second California effort to be recalled in the state’s history. 

Gov. Gray Davis, a Democrat, became the first to be recalled in 2013. Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican, replaced him when he was elected his successor.

The recall efforts are unlikely to be successful, as 46.1% of the states roughly 22 million registered voters identify as Democrats while only 24.2% identify as Republicans.

Additionally, a recent UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies poll conducted with the Los Angeles Times survey found that 47% of likely California voters support recalling Newsom, and 50% oppose the effort.

During the interview with McClatchy, Newsom indicated that a recall effort would further encourage the weaponization of future recall efforts among party lines.

‘I think the opportunity for the Republican Party with the midterm elections coming up, in Kevin McCarthy’s backyard, in Nancy Pelosi’s state, in Kamala Harris’ home state, with California and the values we profess and practice that would be judged in a different light if this was a successful recall,’ he said.

‘I think it would have profound consequences nationwide.’

Newsom noted that, no matter what the results of the recall election are, he’s still a ‘future ex-governor’. He could still lose during the primary election next year – and, if not, would still be limited to just four more years as governor.

The California state constitution limits the governor to serving two terms of four years, with a limit of two terms.  

Newsom said: ‘Look, if you don’t like me, just vote me out at the start of the primary next year.’ 

During the interview, Newsom also noted he was most proud of the state’s record-breaking education spending budget he negotiated this year,

‘If they kick me out. I’m gonna feel good about what we just did, and not ever regret a damn thing,’ he said. ‘We put it all out there on this education budget.’

The newspaper’s boards later published editorials after the interview encouraging California residents to vote ‘no’ on the ballot and not support the recall efforts. 

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