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Column: What Does the Only Other California Governor to Face a Recall Vote Have to Say Now?

Former California Governor and Loeb Of Counsel Gray Davis is quoted in a Los Angeles Times article about the recent September 2021 recall election of current California Governor Gavin Newsom.

In the article, Davis told the Los Angeles Times that while he believes gubernatorial recall laws should stay, changes should be implemented in order to reduce their flaws. For example, one of Davis’ concern is that the two-question structure of the recall is fundamentally undemocratic. The first question asks voters whether they want to recall the incumbent, and the second asks them to choose among a slate of replacement candidates.

The publication notes that the problem is that “a sitting governor could lose with, say, 49% of the vote — while the replacement governor could win with only 25%, 15% or less. You’d be replacing a more popular governor with a less popular governor, which makes no sense.”

“This is Russian roulette,” Davis said. “It’s going to happen sooner or later.”

Davis suggested doing away with the first question altogether and running the recall as an ordinary election — with all the candidates, including the incumbent, competing in a single race. The candidate with the most votes wins and finishes out the incumbent’s term.

Click here to read the article on the Los Angeles Times’ website.