Recall Election: Two questions for Californians

With an election closely approaching and early voting ongoing, many are still confused on what the Gubernatorial Recall Election entails.

By Matthew Royer, Political News Editor

Ballots for California's 2021 Gubernatorial Recall Election ask voters if Gavin Newsom should be recalled and who should replace him. (Graphic Illustration by Don Anthony/The Valley Star)

To keep Gov. Gavin Newsom, or not to keep Gov. Newsom, that is the question. The first question at least.


Voters will head to the polls once again for a special Gubernatorial Recall Election brought upon by a successful petition to Sec. of State Dr. Shirley Weber’s office. According to Weber’s government website, “to qualify a recall of the Governor for the ballot, proponents need a minimum of 1,495,709 valid petition signatures. This is equal to 12 percent of the votes cast for the office of Governor in 2018, which is the last time the office was on the ballot.”


While early voting has started, with ballots being sent out to every registered voter in California, some voters may remain confused about the two questions being asked in the special election. The first question placed on the ballot will present a yes or no question, “Shall GAVIN NEWSOM be recalled (removed) from the office of Governor?”


If a majority of voters vote in the affirmative, Gov. Newsom will be removed from the office of governor. His replacement would be selected based upon the result of the second question on the ballot.


The second question presented to voters will ask, “Who shall replace GAVIN NEWSOM if he is recalled?” according to Yahoo News.


Voters will have their pick of candidates for the second question, this including former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer (R), radio-host Larry Elder (R), YouTuber Kevin Paffrath (D) and former gold-medal winning Olympian Caitlyn Jenner (R) among others.


If the first question passes the 50% threshold, the candidate who receives the most votes will replace Gov. Newson upon the certification of the election.


Voters can decline to vote on the Yes or No question, while still voting for a candidate on the second question. Conversely, voters can choose to vote Yes or No, while declining to vote on the candidates.


The Recall Election is not a first for Californians. Gov. Gray Davis was recalled by 55.39% of voters in 2003 and was replaced by Actor Arnold Schwarzenegger who finished Davis’ term and won reelection in 2006. Schwarzenegger is the last Republican to win state-wide office in California.


Election Day in California is currently scheduled for Sep. 14, but to vote in the election voters had to have been registered to vote by Aug. 30.


While in years past Valley College has been used as a voting center, in the Recall Election students can find the closest voting centers to campus at James Madison Middle School, Van Nuys Recreation Center, Van Nuys Middle School and Studio City Recreation Center, according to LAvote.net.