The Results Are Coming In From California

All of the votes haven’t been counted yet but it seems pretty safe to say that Gavin Newsom is going to survive the recall.

Am I disappointed? Of course. I can’t stand Gavin Newsom and it’s hard for me to understand people who do. Anyone who is serious about getting people vaccinated or masked should resent a politician like Gavin Newsom, one who can’t even follow the same rules that he imposes on everyone else.

Am I surprised? Not really. There was a point when the Republicans could have defeated Newsom but they didn’t take advantage of the moment. Instead of duplicating Schwarzenegger’s strategy of trying to appeal to all voters, Larry Elder concentrated only on Republican voters. You’re not going to win in a deep blue state like California by only trying to appeal to hardcore Republicans because there’s just not enough of them to swing the election. Newsom was able to shift the focus away from his own failings as governor and California’s naturally blue tint carried him to victory.

From the point of view of someone who enjoys following politics, an upset victory is always more interesting than a predictable win, which is why it was enjoyable to fantasize about the media freakout if Newsom had been recalled. (Also, I’d be lying if I said that nostalgia for the truly wild 2003 California recall wasn’t a factor when it came to my interesting in the current rcall.) In this time of intense polarization, it seems more likely that unexpected victories are going to become something that happens in primaries but not general elections.

Newsom survived so expect to hear a lot of talk about how this proves Biden is more popular than people realize. It’s like when the Republicans convince themselves that Ossoff losing a House race meant that 2018 wasn’t going to be as bad as everyone thought it was going to be. That’s the general rule of politics in the 21st Century. Elections only matter when your side wins.

California, have you voted yet?

Today is the California recall election!

I’ve been pretty up front about how much I dislike Gavin Newsom and I do think that it would enjoyable to watch the media freak-out if he was replaced by Larry Elder.

But, to be honest, I expect Newsom will survive.  Hopefully, the polls will be slightly off and the vote will be narrow enough that it will end any speculation about Newsom as a presidential candidate but, given that he’s a Democrat, I doubt we’ll see too many negative takes on him regardless of how the vote goes.

Times have changed since Gray Davis has recalled in 2003.  As much as I dislike him, Gavin Newsom is a better politician than Davis.  And Larry Elder is not as strong a campaigner as Arnold Schwarzenegger.  If the recall fails, Elder will probably get much of the blame.  That’s not quite fair, of course.  But that’s how politics goes and the media will be more than happy to play their part.  There’s nothing scarier to those people than the thought of a black Republican winning a high-profile election.

If Newsom’s recalled, expect to see the story played down.

If Newson survives, expect at least a week of “The Democrats are back, baby” cheering.

Mostly, just get out there and vote!

Vote Yes On The Recall and Larry Elder

The last time this blog endorsed someone in an election, it was Andrew Yang for New York City mayor.

We all remember how well that went.

It’s enough to make me consider that maybe I shouldn’t endorse anyone or, at the very least, I should avoid endorsing people running in elections in which I’m not even eligible to vote.

Then again, what fun is that?

The California recall election is a week away. Pop Politics endorses voting yes to recall Gavin Newsom, a politician who represents everything that people hate about the professional political class. If you want to know how you ended up with people voting for someone like Trump, it’s because people got tired of politicians like Gavin Newsom. Recall Newsom now so we don’t have to suffer through a Newsom presidential campaign in 2028 or 2032.

After voting to recall Gavin, vote to replace him with Larry Elder. I can’t really say that Larry would be a great governor. But the media freak-out following his election would be fun to watch.

Getting Caught Up

Looking back on the last few days, I feel like this country went through a year in one week. Biden’s botched withdrawal from Afghanistan may have dominated the news but it’s hardly the only thing going on in the world.

First off, Ida made landfall. New Orleans is currently without power. There are people in Louisiana who are currently trapped in their homes, waiting for be rescued. None of this is good, especially not during a public health crisis.

The Delta Variant is still out there and it’s still scary. Even those of us who have been vaccinated know that we can still get ill. Our chances for survival have increased but COVID is still nothing to shrug off.

In California, Sirhan Sirhan has been recommended for parole. It falls to Gov. Gavin Newsom to approve it and considering that Newsom is currently in the fight for his political life, I doubt Sirhan is going to be getting out any time soon.

Having finished spreading COVID through Washington, the idiot Texas Dems finally returned to Austin. The voting rights bill that they tried to stop has now passed. I assume that self-described “brave Texas Democrat” Michelle Beckley is still running for Congress.

Meanwhile, crime continues to increase and the economy continues to struggle.

It’s at times like this that you realize why we need a real President and not a figurehead who was planning on spending four years eating ice cream.

About That California Recall Poll

That poll out of California showing that 51% of the voters support recalling Gavin Newsom?

Sure, I liked seeing it. I can’t stand Gavin Newsom. I’d love to see him recalled. But there’s no way that poll could be right, could it? There’s no way the race could have shifted that much, right? Either this poll is incorrect or the earlier polls understated the popularity of the recall. With the current state of polling, it’s hard to say which is true.

So many people were surprised by the majority support for the recall that they failed to notice the 2nd part of the poll, which has a popular YouTuber as the top-ranked candidate to succeed the current governor. Newsom discouraged any well-known Democrats from getting involved in the race, leaving a 29 year-old, German-born Kevin Paffrath as one of the few Democrats to enter the recall. Paffrath has a narrow lead over Republican Larry Elder, mostly because Paffrath’s one of the only six Democrats on the ballot and the only one who had any sort of real following before entering the recall. Kevin Paffrath made his money as a landlord (which is not exactly the Left’s favorite profession), called Gavin Newsom a “weanie baby” in his campaign announcement, and supports using the National Guard to relocate the homeless. He may be a Democrat but he’s clearly a very different Democrat from Gavin Newsom.

While I obviously would be disappointed if Newsom getting recalled didn’t lead to Larry Elder serving as governor (even if it was just for a few months), it’s also hard not to be amused by the idea of a guy going from being a YouTube star to the leader of our most populous state simply because of Gavin Newsom’s hubris.

It’s all speculation right now, of course. Newsom’s in some trouble. He could lose this. But just because it could happen doesn’t mean that it will.

Elder’s In

Elder Wins Recall Legal Victory, Shakes Up CA Race

Larry Elder has won the right to appear on the California recall ballot. If Gavin Newsom is recalled (and that’s a big if), Elder is currently the favorite to succeed him. That could change as the campaign progresses, of course. Elder has a following but this is also the first time he’s run for office. However, due to the way the recall is set up and the lack of a run-off for recall elections, Elder could easily win with just 10% of the vote. Recalls favor name recognition and, among Republican voters, that’s what Elder’s got.

Again, it all depends on whether or not Newsom is recalled. Right now, the polls are still in his favor but they’re tightening and there’s a lot that can happen, especially with the return of masks and crime. If you asked me right now, I was predict that Newsom’s going to survive but that could change depending on the next few weeks.

California Recall: The 2021 Edition

Who’s in? California recall candidate list draws confusion

A California thinks that they can keep Larry Elder off the ballot? I think not. Hopefully, that will soon be resolved.

Looking at the initial list of candidates for the California recall, it doesn’t look like 2021’s recall is going to be as much fun as 2003’s recall. Of course, in 2003, it was hard not to enjoy Gray Davis’s fall from grace because Gray Davis represented everything that turns people off about Democrats.

Gavin Newsom, on the other hand, seems far less likely to be recalled. In many ways, Newsom is even worse than Davis but California is now a far more Democratic state than it was in even 2003. For many of us, the main appeal of recalling Newsom would be that it would mean not having to suffer through the inevitable Gavin Newsom presidential campaign. Hopefully, having Kamala as the heir apparent will keep Newsom from running for president in 2004.