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State lawmakers call for reform following costly recall elections – CBS San Francisco

SACRAMENTO (KPIX) – A day after California voters flatly rejected an effort to recall Governor Gavin Newsom, two state lawmakers are pushing to fix what they call a flawed recall system.

Assembly Member Marc Berman and State Senator Steve Glazer are leading the charge to reform the recall process.

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The price to pay for the California recall election was $ 276 million, according to the state Department of Finance.

In the end, the state’s strange laws allowed for an election that wasn’t close to happening, at huge expense, just 14 months before Newsom was on the ballot anyway. to vote for his re-election.

“A waste of $ 276 million just to reaffirm 2018 results with an election coming up in 2022,” California Assembly Speaker Kevin Mullin tweeted Tuesday evening.

Glazer and Berman said all of that money was spent only on a majority of voters to confirm what they had already said in 2018. Both lawmakers say they are open to any ideas, but are very adamant about it. ensure bipartite engagement with any reform.

They qualify the recall process from the Manipulative State and explore possible arrangements for a more clear and defined procedure. Currently, California is one of 19 states that allow voters to remove state officials before their term expires.

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No reason is needed to initiate a recall; the only requirement for putting a reminder on the ballot is to collect enough voters’ signatures. The total number of signatures must be 12% of voters in the last election for office and must include voters in at least five counties.

Glazer and Berman say the requirements are too vague and there needs to be more accountability. They say they are ready to talk about the best conclusion to help restore public confidence given the current poisonous political climate.

“They don’t want the partisan manipulation that allows a small minority to force an election and win a candidate with less than a majority vote. It’s undemocratic, ”said Glazer.

“The process is as important as the policy,” Berman explained. “So it’s important that we have a transparent process and that we bring together a bipartisan group of experts, stakeholders and colleagues, and that we also have this conversation with the public. “

Mullin said reforms should include raising the lieutenant governor to the state’s chief executive if a governor is successfully recalled, rather than letting voters choose a replacement on the same ballot. .

Newsom’s campaign urged voters to vote ‘no’ on whether to recall him, and then leave the second question – who should replace him if he were to be recalled – blank. This strategy appeared problematic when polls showed a close race without a viable Democratic candidate if Newsom was recalled. But it ultimately helped Newsom’s campaign turn the contest into a one-on-one with Elder.

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