Photo by Matt Gush via Shutterstock

Supporters of the Recall Gavin Newsom campaign need 1,495,709 signatures to trigger a recall election. Right now, just over 680,000 have been validated. 

“I think it’s frustration, it’s anger, it’s helplessness,” said RecallGavin2020 Campaign Senior Advisor Randy Economy to Scriberr News about why thousands of people are signing the petition.

“You know when you shut down the fifth largest economy in the world for a year in the name of a virus of a pandemic––yes it’s a very real situation––but the collateral damage that one man did to California was reprehensible, and that person was Gavin Newsom,” he said.  

Newsom found himself in hot water when photos surfaced of him attending a birthday dinner at the French Laundry, unmasked, with more than five people while he enforced mask mandates and the stay-at-home order during press conferences. 

MARCH 17 DEADLINE

Californians have until March 17, 2021 to sign their name in favor of a recall election and individual counties have already started validating those signatures. 

While the petition has received close to 2 million signatures, not all of those signatures will be verifiable. Once counties begin the verification process, about 15% of those signatures are thrown out. Economy says they have a validation rate of roughly 82%. 

VOLUNTEER EFFORT

There are thousands of volunteers working to secure more signatures while the March 17 deadline quickly approaches. They pop up at grocery and retail stores, restaurants and any location which allows the organization to work on their property. 

California resident Paige Mckeown has volunteered by gathering signatures on the weekends since March of last year. 

“When [Newsom] wanted to lock down California he said it was going to be a couple weeks and then it went on longer. I knew it was going to bring our state into further decline,” Mckeown said to Scriberr News.

“Especially since I lost my job and I wasn’t able to work. I don’t think it’s fair to force people on the unemployment system.” 

Mckeown calls this a nonpartisan effort and says she has seen voters signing in favor of the recall election across party lines. She feels like “California is not the way it used to be,” citing skyrocketing living expenses, the homeless population and political leaders like Gavin Newsom as the reason why some Californians are choosing to move away. 

FUTURE RECALL ELECTIONS

Economy said their goal is not just to recall the California Governor, they hope to change politics as we know it across the nation. 

“The recall movement and the recall proviso, you can’t do it in every state. But you can do it in a lot of states,” he said.

“So we’re getting people from throughout the country who have already reached out to us and said ‘Hey, I don’t like my governor in Michigan, I don’t like my governor in Texas, I don’t like my governor in New York.’. What can you do to advise us, what did you do that we could do here to help try to change our system?”

Many of the aforementioned governors have faced backlash over coronavirus related restrictions. While the Recall Newsom organization hopes to share their knowledge and experiences with other concerned citizens, Economy says their first goal is securing the recall election in California. 

“Our only focus right now is California and recalling this governor and to make sure we do everything legally allowed to us in the state constitution and election laws to be able to be successful,” Economy said. 

PAST RECALL EFFORTS

However, records show that almost every California Governor since 1960 has faced a recall election, which means it may be a wide margin that Newsom would be stripped of his position. Only one governor was voted out, Gray Davis, in 2003. 

Written ByAshley Grams

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