Biden: California recall results will be felt nationwide
LONG BEACH, Calif .– President Joe Biden put Democrats’ approach to the coronavirus pandemic at stake on Monday, questioning the California recall that could impeach Gov. Gavin Newsom as an opportunity for voters to show to the nation that “leadership matters, science matters.”
“The eyes of the nation are on California because the decision you are about to make will not only have a huge impact on California, it will reverberate throughout the nation, and frankly, this is no joke. , around the world, ”the Democratic president said at a rally in the city of Long Beach, southern California.
The closing speech by Newsom and his most prominent Democratic ally came a night before the end of the vote in the race that could remove the governor from the first term. He is only the fourth governor in US history and the second in California to face a recall. Californians removed Democratic Governor Gray Davis in 2003 and replaced him with Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger.
“Gavin will be a governor who will help us finish the job,” Biden said of the pandemic.
Just half an hour south of where Biden spoke, Republican leader and radio host Larry Elder was urging his supporters not to give up the vote among fellow Republicans, friends and neighbors over the past 24 hours. hours of the race. The party needs a strong election day protest to catch up with Democrats who performed better in early votes, mostly by mail. Almost 8 million Californians have already voted by mail.
“Make sure your friends vote, vote, vote and try to get 10 other friends to vote and answer every call, make every call, knock on every door, we’re going to win this thing if we vote,” he said. said Elder from the ballroom of a hotel in the town of Costa Mesa, Orange County. He then went through his standard stump talk about what he sees as Newsom’s failures in public education, water, wildfires and crime.
Biden easily won California, although Trump garnered over 6 million votes in the state. California has more than 22 million registered voters.
California Republican Party President Jessica Millan Patterson called it “puzzling and insulting” that Biden had embarked on a political event while some Californians remained stranded in Afghanistan.
“It is clear that protecting those they have been elected to serve comes after politics,” she said in a statement.
Amateur Republican political organizers unhappy with Newsom’s approach to crime, homelessness and immigration launched the recall campaign in early 2020, but the coronavirus pandemic brought it to the polls. Newsom was the first governor in the country to issue a statewide home support order that closed many businesses for months and barred children from entering classrooms.
“There is no front I can think of where this man has done a good job – not on schools, not on the homeless, not in the way he closed this state,” Elder said earlier. Monday.
Voters are asking themselves two questions: should Newsom be recalled, yes or no, and who should replace him? The results of the second question only matter if a majority wants to remove Newsom. Recent polls from the Public Policy Institute of California and others showed Newsom defeated the recall.
The recall’s main organizer, Orrin Heatlie, said neither Biden nor Trump should weigh in on the contest because it involves California issues. Meanwhile, he said Trump’s statement on Monday calling the election rigged risked decreasing Republican turnout.
“When people aren’t confident, if they don’t have confidence that their vote is going to count, then they’re not going to waste their time voting,” Heatlie said.
There has been no confirmed evidence of widespread fraud. Elder’s campaign website links to a website called “Stop CA Fraud” where people can sign a petition demanding a special election to investigate the election, even if the election is not over.
Ahead of the rally, Biden visited the wildfire damage in northern California. He praised Newsom’s leadership in its response to climate change, which is helping California wildfires become bigger and more destructive. Elder and Republicans say Democratic leaders have failed to properly manage California’s forests, leaving more fuel for the fires.
The other prominent candidates in the race are Republicans Kevin Faulconer, Kevin Kiley and John Cox, and Democrat Kevin Paffrath.
Ronayne reported from Sacramento. Associated Press reporter Alexandra Jaffe contributed from Long Beach.
Catching up with AP Recall Coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/california-recall