Turn Out to Vote NO on Recall to Prevent an Extremist Trumpster Governor Disgraceful recall process is an affront to democracy that could allow far right minority to torch Golden State’s progress

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The state of California has a flaw in our state constitution: the recall election.

This anti-democratic flaw allows a minority political party to endanger the orderly transfer of power in the most important state in these United States. It allows politically motivated, self-serving operatives whose political platform is so bankrupt and unpopular that they cannot compete in a conventional majority-rules election to run an off cycle election, when voter turnout is likely to be well below a general election, and gain power with a tiny minority of the vote.

As a result, in our state’s September 14 recall election, if more than 50% of those who show up vote yes to recall Governor Gavin Newson, then an unpopular right wing Trump-supporting extremist can emerge victorious with less than 15% of the ballots cast. This outcome would result in political chaos and could do serious damage, not only to the rule of law but to the American economic engine that is California.

This is important.  Even our middle sized counties like Contra Costa and Riverside have more citizens than states like Montana, Wyoming and North Dakota.  This is California, home of the greatest agricultural state in our nation. This is California, home of the Silicon Valley and birthplace of some of the most important entrepreneurial breakthroughs in the history of the modern world. This is the Golden State, where some of the most beautiful mountains and coastlines and farmlands and deserts are attracting people from all over the world as we build beautiful futures for our children and grandchildren.

The GOP is not grand at all as it tries to find a way to end run the will of the people and the popular voting majority of the great state of California.

Citizens who care about our future must turn out and vote NO on the recall, while letting friends and family know how important this election is.

The clown show that is front runner Larry Elder a Rush-Limbaugh like Republican misogynist who waved a gun at his fiancé and stated that women with children who are in the workforce should be discriminated against because they are not giving their employer their full attention, is a disgrace.

The Republican critics of Gavin Newsom are apologists for greedy corporations and multimillionaires while blaming the Governor for the housing shortages that are for real. Republicans like Elder have been fighting for generations to lower taxes on the wealthy while failing to invest in our children in their earliest years, despite the reality that virtually every major democracy on earth does. And let’s not forget that it was Ronald Reagan, a Republican Governor, who got rid of the state’s network of  Developmental Centers and pushed our drug addicted and mentally ill and alcoholic brothers and sisters onto the streets.

And it is the Republican candidates running to unseat Gavin who are in shameful denial about climate science and public health in the Covid-19 age. The worst of them, like those running to replace Newsom with a fraction of the votes he received during his election,  seem to be say, “Fiddle De De, we’ll worry about that tomorrow”, as we seriously endanger the health and well-being of our children.

I do not always agree with Gavin Newson nor do I always disagree with Republicans.  But the leadership that Newsom has shown in a very difficult moment in the history of the world is constructive and positive.  Do I wish he had done even more for children and their education? Yes, but I have no doubt that the Republican candidates running to oust him will do far less.  Gavin understands that the state Constitution says our first priority should be the education of children through institutions of higher education.  Most of the Republicans running to replace him have never even read the state Constitution and none of them are talking education, environmental protection, social justice or investing in the future.

Please step up and vote against the recall and for the future.  And let us fix this poorly conceived recall provision of the constitution that could allow some windy gasbag or mealy-mouthed apologist for unrestrained greed and a would-be dictator to sneak on to the political stage and create misery for millions in our great state.

Fair is fair. Make sure the Governor of California is elected by a majority of the people of California. It is, after all, about democracy.

Governor Newsom won his election in 2018 with more than 7.7 million votes. That was 3 million more votes than his Republican opponent.  Because of a flaw in California’s constitution, an extremist Trumpster like Larry Elder, with no political experience, might replace him with less than one-fifth that number of votes. All this will take is a low turnout rate among Democrats.

In the near future, California’s legislature should fix this anti-democratic recall process, which is so problematic that the Dean of UC Berkeley’s law school titled this recent New York Times Op Ed,  “There Is a Problem With California’s Recall. It’s Unconstitutional.”

For the sake of democracy and California’s future, please vote NO on your recall ballot, and ask your friends and family to do the same.


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Delaine Eastin

Delaine Eastin served as the California State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SPI) for eight years from 1995 to 2003, the first and only woman in history elected to that position. As an elected constitutional officer, Delaine managed more than 40% of the California budget and oversaw the education of 6.1 million children. While serving as SPI, she advocated for reduced class size in K-3, better technology and more hands on learning, a restoration of arts, career and technical education, school gardens and improved nutrition for children, school libraries and a longer school year, state academic standards and assessments aligned to those standards. She was the architect of the first Net Day, an electronic barn raising, copied in 40 states and 40 countries. She also advocated for Universal Preschool and full day mandatory kindergarten which she continues to advocate for.

Prior to serving as SPI, Delaine served 8 years in the California State Assembly where she chaired several committees including the Education Committee. She authored what was the largest school bond in history. She also authored legislation to provide for better financial oversight of schools and a host of other educational improvements.

After retiring as SPI, Delaine was the first Executive Director of the National Institute for School Leadership in Washington, DC and then a Distinguished Visiting Professor of Educational Leadership at Mills College in Oakland. She now does speaking and consulting. A native Californian, Delaine is an avid reader, gardener, cook, traveler and advocate for children. Delaine holds a BA from UC Davis and an MA from UC Santa Barbara.

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