SACRAMENTO (KPIX) – CBS News predicted Tuesday night that the ‘no’ would win the recall election, meaning Gov. Gavin Newsom will remain in office.
Most Californians voting in the recall election said they approved of Newsom’s job as governor, and those who did so voted overwhelmingly against the recall which would have removed Newsom from office.
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Less than an hour after the polls closed, Newsom addressed his supporters.
“’No’ is not the only thing that has been expressed tonight,” he said. “I want to focus on what we said ‘yes’ to as a state. We said yes to science. We said yes to vaccines. We said yes to the end of this pandemic. We said yes to the right to vote for people without fear of fraudulent fraud or voter suppression. “
More than half of voters in this election said they believe Governor Newsom is “in touch” with the needs and concerns of Californians.
The “no” won out over most demographic groups: majorities of men and women, white and non-white voters, and voters of all age groups all voted against the recall.
Newsom avoided an upset defeat that would have sent Democrats scrambling ahead of the upcoming 2021 gubernatorial elections in New Jersey and Virginia, as well as the 2022 midterm elections.
The September 14 election was the sixth recall attempt against Newsom, but the first to meet the signature threshold needed to trigger an election. The recall began in February 2020, when a group called the California Patriot Coalition aimed to suppress Newsom for its policies on COVID-19, homelessness, immigration and taxes and the state’s affordability.
The recall effort really took off after Newsom was spotted dining at an upscale Napa Valley restaurant while his lockdowns on indoor dining were in place.
Leading GOP candidate and conservative radio talk show host Larry Elder has told his supporters to be “graceful in defeat” after booing his mention of Governor Newsom’s name.
“By the way, we might have lost the battle, but we’re going to win the war,” Elder added.
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Reality TV star and former Olympian Caitlyn Jenner entered the race but gained little momentum and left the state for part of the campaign to film a reality TV show in Australia.
Jenner spoke to supporters on Tuesday night, expressing her disbelief that Newsom had won so decisively.
“I can’t believe that so many people voted to keep him in power. It’s a shame, ”Jenner said.
California GOP Recall Candidate Caitlyn Jenner speaks after Governor Newsom’s impeachment vote failed: “I can’t believe so many people voted to keep him in power. It’s a shame . ” https://t.co/cagDpkFQdS pic.twitter.com/2cONQbrtMu
– CBS News (@CBSNews) September 15, 2021
“You kind of get the government you deserve,” she added.
California Democrats had a huge advantage in party registration, and no Republican has won a statewide race since 2006. But the current issues facing the state and the concerns that the special election could be an indicator that the 2022 elections have drawn national attention to the race.
According to election data company L2, the first polls had passed 52% of Democrats and 25% of Republicans.
DNC Chairman Jaime Harrison issued the following statement regarding the recall:
“Voters once again rejected the Republican Party’s denial of the pandemic sweeping our country and their subsequent refusal to deal with it, rejected Republicans’ refuted conspiracy theories of our election, and rejected unwavering loyalty Republicans to the man who caused it all – Donald Trump.
“Tonight is a victory for the bold agenda presented by President Biden, Governor Newsom and Congressional Democrats to build our country back better, deliver on its promises and get our country back on track. I am confident that we will continue to do so in 2021, 2022 and beyond.
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“Governor Newsom is providing the smart, knowledgeable and focused leadership needed to keep Californians safe and strengthen the state’s economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic. He has a strong track record of delivering to the people of California and I look forward to seeing him continue this vital work as governor. “