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How to vote in the gubernatorial recall election? Step one – vote!


By Roberta Millstein

If you are registered to vote in CA, you should have received your ballot for the election to recall Governor Gavin Newsom by now.   If for some reason you aren’t registered, August 30 is the last day to register to vote; after that, you can “conditionally” register and vote at your county elections office or polling location after the voter registration deadline, up to and including Election Day (Sept 14).

Voting is easy!  In Davis, there are several voting assistance centers and ballot drop boxes.  See the graphic at the top or this page for details.  Or you can mail in your ballot – it has to be postmarked by Sept. 14. Each ballot will come with prepaid postage. So no excuses not to vote.  If you're not in Davis, check out your local options.

And your vote really matters in this election – even more so than usual – so please take the time to vote!

The biggest challenge that Governor Newsom has to overcome is voter apathy – people thinking they don’t need to vote because Newsom is a slam dunk (how’d that work out for Gray Davis?) or who just aren’t that excited about Newsom.  Well, I have to admit I’ve not always been happy with his decisions, either.  But then again, I can’t think of any politician in my lifetime I’ve been totally happy with. 

Governor Newsom has done nothing bad enough to deserve a recall and the candidate everyone thinks will most likely win, Larry Elder, would be terrible.  Elder thinks that people who are concerned about climate change are “alarmists,” he supports overturning Roe v. Wade, and he wants to eliminate the minimum wage (link).  He would be terrible for California, especially if he had the opportunity to appoint a Senator if Senator Feinstein were to retire.

Davis tends to overwhelmingly vote Democratic, as does California as a whole.  So if we mobilize to vote “NO” on recalling Governor Newsom, we can help make sure that California doesn’t head down a dangerous path.  So please vote “NO” on question 1 on the ballot.

Question 2 is more complicated.  The Democratic party and most Democratic organizations are either giving no advice on question 2 or advising people to skip that question. I think that’s a mistake. Apparently, they are worried people will be confused and think that they aren’t allowed to vote in the second question if they vote “no” on the first.  I assure you, it is perfectly legitimate to vote “no” on the first question and still vote on question 2.

I mean, again, I hope that a majority of people vote “no” on question 1, making question 2 moot.  But if that doesn’t happen, we want to make sure that we at least get the best person we can, and not Elder, or someone like Elder, who (by California’s ridiculous recall rules) can get elected with less than a majority of the votes.

I plan to vote for Daniel Kapelovitz for question 2.  I fully admit that I have not researched all of the candidates.  But he seems to have a reasonable amount of backing, he is a defense attorney (which I think provides some relevant experience), and he has a good platform, focusing on animal rights, action on climate change and the Green New Deal, Medicare for all, and more policies that I wholeheartedly support (see his platform here).  He himself advocates voting “no” on question 1, which I admire.  But if the majority votes “yes” on question 1, he is someone I’d be comfortable with in the governor’s office. 

But if he is not the candidate you’d prefer, I urge you to look them over and vote for someone who you do like.  To answer a frequently asked question – no, you cannot vote for Newsom, or write in Newsom, for the second question.

My point in recommending Kapelovitz is in the hope that we can focus our efforts on one alternative to Elder and the other Republicans.  So please consider him, and, most importantly, please take the time to vote against the recall.


Nancy Price

Thank you, Roberta-AND let’s not forget - the ultimate prize for Republicans would California’s 55 Electoral College votes!

Alan C. Miller

I'm voting for Larry Elder. It's time we had a conservative for California governor. And I'd be cool to have to have a black man for governor who is also conservative - it would like blow people's minds, man. Newsom is a clown. Newsom's cure for Covid-19, when our meters for Covid-19 (color codes) don't make us look good, break the meters so no one can see! And when they are needed, don't bring them back!

Voting for Elder would make the Davis Vanguard very happy -- to have a black man as governor -- because, y'know, it's all about race. And my primary goal in life is to make the Davis Vanguard happy. As a Libservative (don't EVER call me a Coniberal!), I don't agree with Mr. Elder on many things, but do I agree with him about a lot more than I do Newsom (when you remove the trigger-fuse abortion issue - always dragged in to IED any conservative except Arnold from holding highest office in DemLibofornia).

Listen to Mr. Elder's talk show some time - you might find you agree with him on some stuff - and that he isn't the devil incarnate. Mr. Elder and I see eye-to-eye on removing the minimum wage (money should be a means of trade, nothing more, unless you manipulate it politically). And seriously, this one-party, super-majority Democrat-Party mono-state needs a major enema :-| Mr. Elder will be that perfect enema. Vote California enema! Vote Elder!

Roberta L. Millstein

Just to follow up on one thread of your post, Alan... if you think Newsom didn't take a strong enough line against COVID (and I agree), then you're not going to be too happy with the way that Elder deals with it, who doesn't think we need to be masked or vaccinated.

Ok, and one more thing -- abortion actually is relevant here because of the possibility of the governor replacing Senator Feinstein. And, you know, it's a very personal issue for some of us. Just sayin'.

Alan C. Miller

I do respect that the abortion issue is personal; I just hate seeing it used to destroy any conservative in a left-leaning (tipping, over) state. OK, hadn't realize Elder was against masks and vaccines - I'll have to read more on his nuances on that matter. Ok, then, vote Jenner!

Roberta L. Millstein

Here is a page that talks about candidates' views on masks and vaccines:

There might be a better one.

Ron O

I view a vote for Gavin Newsom as synonymous to a vote for Scott Wiener.

Robin Wiener

Thank you, Roberta!


Time for a change, let's vote to get rid of the phony career politician and all of his hypocritical actions.

Ron O

The State Assembly (including Aguiar-Curry) approved SB 10. It will now head back to the Senate for final approval, and then to Governor Newsom.

The following link lists open space protections around California that are threatened by SB 10:

Below is another article, regarding the impact of SB 10:

"That rhetoric is hard to square with sprawl-inducing SB 10, which Wiener is carrying for its sponsor, California Yimby."

"SB 10 would encourage projects like the obscene Tassajara Parks development that the Contra Costa Board of Supervisors just approved on a 4-1 vote."

Wake up folks - a vote for Newsom is essentially a vote for Wiener.

And (sorry to say) but Aguiar-Curry is in that same camp.

Ron O

Here's one more, regarding SB 10. Of course, Newsom will likely sign this:

"The bill allows city councils and boards of supervisors to override voter-adopted initiative measures in exchange for higher-density housing, setting a troubling standard that could eventually render the initiative power meaningless."

"Packaged as yet another silver bullet to California’s housing crisis, SB 10 is aimed at increasing housing supply in areas that are already developed; however, loopholes could still allow building in undeveloped areas."

But by all means, keep supporting the Democrats behind these efforts. After all, they're the "good guys", right? :-)

Ron O

So, apparently (both) SB 9 and SB 10 have been approved by the state legislature, and will now head to Newsom's desk for approval. Assuming that the governor signs these bills, I guess we'll see if that increases the chance for a successful recall.

"As Governor Newsom faces a recall, 46% polled say they would view California Governor Gavin Newsom less favorably if he supported or signed two real estate development bills now making their way through the California Legislature."

Op-Ed: "The absolute wrong way to solve California’s affordable housing crisis"

Ron O

Though I'm not sure if the two bills (SB 9 & SB 10) will reach the governor's desk prior to the recall election. So, perhaps he can "ignore" this warning, partly depending upon how the media covers it:

"By 2-1, a cross-section of Californians oppose more market-rate housing as a solution to the crisis. It's a warning to Gavin Newsom."

Newsom will be challenged again in 2022, regardless.

Roberta L. Millstein

I would not be happy if he signed those bills. (Perhaps we need a new article to talk about them explicitly: hint, hint). But still:

* Signing them does not, in my mind, constitute a reason for a recall. I believe recalls should only be for violations of law or gross mismanagement.

* Even though I am not fully happy with Newsom, I prefer him to the alternatives on the ballot -- certainly the Republican alternatives.

* Even though housing issues are important to me locally, on a bigger statewide scale other issues take more precedence, especially environmental issues. Again, not that Newsom has been everything I'd want in those areas, but not recall-worthy and better than the alternatives.

Ron O

I understand, Roberta.

But for me, I'm willing to "send a message". And, there's others besides Republicans who can complete the rest of his term.

The Republicans are apparently the ones against the YIMBY housing bills.
Regardless, I figure that there isn't much damage that a Republican can do (with approximately 1.5 years remaining in Newsom's current term).

Newsom lives on a sprawling, multi-million dollar compound himself, while forcing others to "do as he says, not as he does".

Same thing with masks, really. (But I was more concerned about "who" he thought it was so important to meet with, at the French Laundry.)

There's also this:

He's no Jerry Brown.

I'm also more that a little sick of the influence that special interests exert, as well. More than $18 million for Newsom's campaign (from various unions, alone), as of August 13th.

I'm done supporting this type of thing. In my opinion, Gray Davis was recalled for far less.

Roberta L. Millstein

"... others besides Republicans who can complete the rest of his term. "

Yes, and that's why (as I said in my original article) that I voted for Dan Kapelovitz on the second question. I just worry that without some sort of groundswell he (or another non-Republican) won't get enough votes.

I agree that there is far too much money in politics -- an issue that most Republicans and Democrats have alike -- and Newsom is no different from the rest in that regard. It's one reason why I supported Bernie and why I've tried to support other non-corporate candidates when I can.

One big piece of damage that a Republican could do is selecting a replacement for Feinstein, should she retire. Another is Florida or Texas-style COVID policies.

I think the recall system is broken. It shouldn't be this easy to recall, and the consequence of a recall should be that the Lt. Governor takes over, not that there is this weird-ass "election" where more people can vote "no" than vote for the replacement, and yet the replacement takes over. That is not a democratic (small-d) process, in my opinion.

Ron O

"In theory, a single-family home could be transformed into eight units if SB9 is signed."

"Gov. Gavin Newsom, who hasn’t taken a public position on the bill. He has until Oct. 10 to sign or veto the bill."

"It has been a busy week for state housing legislation. On Monday, the Assembly passed Senate Bill 10, which allows cities to forego environmental review and override local land-use restrictions when approving developments of up to 10 units on single-family lots."

(Gee, what a "surprise" that Newsom hasn't taken a position - I assume on either of these drastic bills. What courage.)

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