FRESNO, California (KSEE) – Gov. Gavin Newsom will face a recall election. The Secretary of State confirmed Monday that more than 1.6 million signatures on recall petitions are verified – triggering the election expected sometime this fall.
The fate of the final year of Newsom’s term will now head to the voters to decide in a special recall election sparked by more than 1.6 million verified recall petition signatures, around 133,000 more than required for the recall to get on the ballot.
“This is serious business,” said Republican gubernatorial candidate John Cox. “This really is a chance for Californians to really get some change done.”
San Diego businessman John Cox lost to Newsom in 2018. He’s now on the growing list of Republicans vying for the office.
“We’ve got such great people, such great resources, we’ve got such great assets. What we haven’t had is leadership that really cares enough about the people to stand up to these special interests.”
Also in the running is former San Diego mayor and Republican Kevin Faulconer. In a statement, he said Californians from all walks of life took the opportunity to demand change.
Democrats, Republicans, and Independents are coming together to support this recall and get our state back on track. As the only candidate who’s won tough elections and enacted real reform, I am ready to lead this movement. Together, we will turn the page on Gavin Newsom’s failures and begin a California Comeback to reopen our schools, cut taxes for working families, and create jobs for the people of our state.
Reality television star Caitlyn Jenner has also entered the race. She is not the first celebrity to set eyes on the office. In the state’s only recall to date, Democrat Gray Davis was ousted by Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2003.
“I think it’s comparing apples to grapefruits,” said Steven Maviglio, Democratic strategist and former Press Secretary for Gov. Gray Davis. “There are so many things that are different, there are a lot more Democrats in the state that there were back in 2003. Gray Davis’ approval ratings were in the high 20%; Newsom’s is in the 40% [range]’.”
Maviglio thinks Newsom will succeed in the election, so long as a Democrat doesn’t enter the race and pending his job performance between now and then. State officials estimate the recall election would cost $400 million.
“I think a lot of us would rather see go to fighting real problems, fixing schools, fighting homelessness, but instead it’s going to be spent on this election – only to be redone if Newsom wins a few months later in a June primary and November election.”
Fresno County Democrat David Rowell is backing Newsom – calling the effort divisive and the governor an easy target.
“I think it’s a cynical political ploy,” said David Rowell with Fresno County Democratic Party. “I think the Republican party is just trying to capitalize on this extraordinary year.”
Voters who signed the petition now have 30 business days to remove their names if they choose. Counties have until Thursday to finish verifying signatures.