International news agencies project that Democrat Gavin Newsom will continue as governor of California, following a recall vote held on Tuesday (14).
With 62% of ballots counted, Newsom was ahead by 32 percentage points: 66% of voters saying he should stay in office and 34% saying he should be removed. The Associated Press (AP), Reuters and CNN International project a victory for the Democrat, who will remain in office until his term ends in January 2023.
The official result will still take a few days to be released and will only be certified in October.
Newsom already celebrates victory. “The voters said yes to science, to the vaccine, to the right to vote without fear, to diversity, to inclusion and to women’s rights,” she said.
Understand why there is a recall election
California’s electoral rules allow for this type of recall – recently, there were changes in legislation that made it easier to convene this mechanism: it is necessary to gather the equivalent of 12% of voters who participated in the last ballot.
For Newsom’s public call, it was necessary to gather the signatures of 1.5 million voters (California has 40 million inhabitants).
The campaign to repeal Newsom’s mandate has gained traction with conservatives, who disagree with policies on LGBTQI+ rights, crime and immigration. They were even more upset with the management of the pandemic (schools were closed and masks and vaccines are mandatory).
Newsom was elected in 2018. He won nearly 62 percent of the vote over John Cox, who received 38 percent. The result was not surprising, as California has a leftist bias in American politics. Democratic Party members outnumber Republican Party members by a ratio of two to one.
The vote was the first ballot box match between Republicans and Democrats since the troubled 2020 presidential election. The Democrats’ victory was already expected as the party has more registered voters in the state.