LOS ANGELES: California voted overwhelmingly to retain its Democratic governor on Tuesday (September 14) and completely rejected a Republican attempt to oust him in a special recall vote due to mask mandates and COVID-19 lockdowns.
Gavin Newsom practically survived an effective vote of confidence that could have seen him replaced by a Republican with only minority support in one of the most liberal parts of the United States.
With more than 60 percent of the vote counted, NBC, CNN and Fox News said Newsom would win, with two-thirds voting against the effort.
“” No “is not the only thing expressed tonight,” Newsom of Sacramento said minutes after the race was called.
“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 ending this pandemic.”
Newsom acted quickly when the pandemic took hold in California, ordering people to stay home and close schools, in moves praised by researchers.
But businessmen blamed him for suffocating his businesses with his rules, and parents were ashamed to keep their children at home.
The vote had been eagerly seen by politicians across the deeply divided country as a possible indicator of how those executives who listened to doctors – instead of angry voters – would fare at the ballot box.
Newsom’s main opponent was Larry Elder, 69, a right-wing radio star who has proudly spoken of his support for former President Donald Trump.
Before the polls even closed, Elder took a page from Trump’s 2020 election book and launched a website alleging voter fraud, demanding that government officials “investigate and improve the twisted results” of the election.
But what the elders had previously described as a “victory party”, he urged his supporters to be “gracious in defeat”.
“We may have lost the battle, but we will win the war,” he told an audience sprinkled with red “Make America Great Again” hats.
The vote was a two-part referendum, with the first asking if 53-year-old Newsom would stay.
The other, who had only recorded if a majority wanted him gone, asked which of the 46 candidates would take his place.
Traditional politicians competed with a YouTube star, a “Billboard Queen” and Caitlyn Jenner for the booty.