On Sept. 14, California voters will be asked whether to recall Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom and, if so, who will replace him.
As Newsom would seem to be inadvertently indicating, he doesn’t like his chances all that much. And he also has no idea what possibly could have precipitated such a rebuke of his infallible authority.
Gavin Newsom tells the Sac Bee he doesn't "regret a damn thing." This is why there's a Recall. He hasn't learned a damn thing.
— Kevin Kiley (@KevinKileyCA) August 2, 2021
Rather than entertaining the notion that the blowback stems from California’s high taxes, crime and homelessness — coupled with the soft authoritarianism of its unchecked Democratic ruling class — Newsom has tried to undermine one of the top candidates to replace him, conservative radio host Larry Elder, by calling him a supporter of former President Donald Trump.
Shock Poll Shows Gavin Newsom Losing Recall Vote By Double Digits https://t.co/RHVNFUYhLA#RecallGavinNewsom#WeveGotAStateToSave
— Larry Elder (@larryelder) August 5, 2021
The governor has also smeared Elder with the sort of foolish attacks that lose their bite with each passing day Democrats employ them in place of supportable positions of their own.
“The leading candidate thinks climate change is a hoax, believes we need more offshore oil drilling, more fracking, does not believe a woman has the right to choose [and] actually came out against Roe v. Wade, does not believe in a minimum wage,” Newsom said of Elder, according to the Los Angeles Times.
His opposition being the devil incarnate aside, Newsom’s chief pitch is thus: “At the end of the day, this is all about turnout. They may turn out in record numbers. But there are more of us, meaning more that believe like us — including many Republicans that just reject Trump and Trumpism.”
There lies the Democratic political strategy of the day. Persuasion of the middle and compromise with the other side can be done away with so long as enough votes can be cobbled together to consign everyone else to irrelevance, even if that requires appealing to the prejudices of minority groups and pitting them against an evil opposition.
But registered Democrats, who outnumber California Republicans nearly 2-1, don’t boast an enthusiasm edge in this race so far.
This has not been lost on Newsom, who — like a man breaming with confidence in his ability to put down challengers — has pleaded with voters to “just vote me out at the start of the primary next year” if they don’t like him that much.
This recall has little to do with Donald Trump or evil Republicans or a right-wing vendetta against Newsom for winning in 2018, as he suggests.
The recall effort is a rebuke of left-wing authoritarianism that should ring loudly across the country with national Democrats trying to market a rejection of Trump himself as an endorsement of policy that would make Fidel Castro rosy in the cheeks.
The reason that Newsom is being challenged is that he is an awful governor who subjects his residents to criminal activity by refusing to police illicit behavior, which he blames on a system that he happens to be head of, and who has permitted homelessness to run rampant, to the detriment of those suffering on the streets as well as those residents paying laughable tax rates to encounter hypodermic needles and human feces on their sidewalks.
Gavin Newsom slammed for mask 'hypocrisy' and 'ignoring science' by GOP gubernatorial candidate Larry Elder https://t.co/7W5wHxeb6O
— Fox News (@FoxNews) August 2, 2021
The Democrat is being challenged because he is an authoritarian who shuts down businesses, closes schools and forces his residents to stay home without work, entertainment or educational opportunity — all without any data to justify their “sacrifice.”
And, perhaps above all, Newsom is being challenged because he is a hypocrite who, like Stalin with his dacha, feasts maskless at classy restaurants with lobbyist pals while his people languish under his suffocating rule.
EXCLUSIVE: Full story re: photos of Gavin Newsom at Napa dinner party we obtained. Responses from Newsom's team as well as Jason Kinney's team included. His team also referred us to a Town & Country magazine photo describing the seating as outdoors. https://t.co/LmQ2yIggGf @FOXLA
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) November 18, 2020
Under Newsom, California has lost population (and an electoral vote), experienced bloated death rates from COVID-19 relative to other well-populated states that were governed in accordance with data, and suffered a state-sanctioned embrace of pseudoscientific nonsense that has undermined residents’ trust in their institutions — the consequence being the need to force people into compliance because persuasion has been rendered difficult.
Gavin Newsom has been a disaster for the state of California, and the recall effort at his expense is richly deserved.
Successful or not, the reasons for it should encourage Democrats to temper their top-down authoritarian tendencies or themselves risk a premature return to the private sector.