California Governor Gavin Newsom under threat of being removed from office

After being seen breaking his own social distancing orders, Governor Newsom is facing substantial backlash

Protestors+in+support+of+recalling+the+governor+gather+at+the+steps+of+the+California+State+Capitol.+

Sophia Harimoto

Protestors in support of recalling the governor gather at the steps of the California State Capitol.

Since January of 2019, Governor Gavin Newsome has served as the 40th governor of California. When the number of COVID-19 cases started to rise in America, Newsom immediately shut down the state with strict stay at home orders that left many people struggling to make ends meet. Many people became panicked and angry, causing a new surge of recall attempts. 

Efforts to recall Newsom have been happening off and on for months, but when Newsom was spotted eating at The French Laundry restaurant early in November where his own lockdown orders were not upheld, tensions rose even higher amidst this COVID-19 reality. 

“Everyone is being caught doing double because we live in an electronic age now….What anybody does today will be headlines tomorrow,” said Randy Economy, a senior advisor in the Recall Governor Gavin Newsom 2020 Committee, a lead organization in recalling efforts.

Although the governor has given a public apology for breaking his own safety guidelines, many people are finding this incident to be a huge reason to call for his removal. A formal petition organized by the Recall California Governor Newsom 2020 organization has been made and now has over 800,000 signatures. It needs just under 1.5 million valid signatures in order for the recall to be seriously considered. 

A few Granite Bay High School students, however, believe that these reasons are too rash. 

“I think people are really acting in the moment and it’s a very incendiary petition to get rid of Newsom…(Newsom breaking his own guidelines) is something we need to criticize, but it’s not a make or break deal for me,” said Olivia Matthews, one of the co-presidents of the High School Democrats of America club.

Matthew’s co-president, Denali Lasko, agrees. Denali also argues that since these recall attempts have been happening for months, the fact that Newsom was sighted breaking his own rules isn’t the real reason for the petition. 

(Recall efforts) are always in the background and then they flare up when people get really angry about something.”

— Denali Lasko

“(Recall efforts) are always in the background and then they flare up when people get really angry about something,” Lasko said. “Many of the people who are for the recall efforts don’t care about the social distancing guidelines. I’ve driven past them many times, not wearing masks and not social distancing. They don’t care about the restrictions, they are just looking for another reason for the recall efforts.”

The official website that is recognized by the secretary of state is Recall California Governor Gavin Newsom (2020). On their website, there is a list of reasons to recall Newsom that have nothing to do with Newsom being sighted in public. Economy says that because of these reasons, people do have a duty to speak their mind by becoming involved in the recall efforts. 

“I think all of us have the responsibility, especially in this day and age, to not sit on the side lines anymore,” Economy said. “That’s why I took the opportunity to get involved as well as take this responsibility as a senior advisor position which I’m very excited, honored and thrilled about.”

Economy also says that despite the pandemic, people are still really becoming involved in politics. 

“Maybe the pandemic is turning out to be a blessing as far as political activism is concerned,” Economy said. “It’s letting people know and understand that the government truly can completely control every aspect of your life.”

Aside from that, the pandemic has also made outreach much cheaper.

“If we were to have to do this in the traditional sense of television advertising and mass mailing and phone banking, we would have probably already spent over 150 million dollars,” Economy said. 

There are many other websites that claim to have the same goal of recalling Newsom.

“There are a lot of other shadow groups that have nothing to do with the recall, so don’t waste your money on them. RecallGavin2020.com is recognized by the Secretary of State, “ Economy said. 

Regardless of the political stance one takes, it is important to note that even during this pandemic people are voicing their opinions to create change.

“We’re all equal at the ballot box,” Economy said.

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