What you need to know about voting in Newsom's reminder

With some 22 million ballots arriving in Californians’ mailboxes this week, voting began in Governor Gavin Newsom’s recall election . B...


With some 22 million ballots arriving in Californians’ mailboxes this week, voting began in Governor Gavin Newsom’s recall election.

By September 14, voters will decide whether Newsom, a Democrat who won in a landslide in 2018, should be replaced – and if so, by whom.

Although the effort to recall the governor was once considered unlikely, a recent poll shows that it is now a dead end, as my colleagues reported on Tuesday.

Newsom has raised more campaign funds than all of his challengers combined, and less than a quarter of the state’s electorate is Republican, but neither will matter if they don’t. There aren’t enough Democrats voting in the election to counter Republicans’ enthusiasm for the ouster.

As the election season heats up, I have answers to all of your voting questions in the reminder.

Monday was the last day for counties to send out the ballots, so yours should be on its way if it hasn’t already arrived at your house.

As with last year’s presidential election, each active registered voter will receive one ballot in the mail. If you want to know exactly where yours is, sign up for the free state ballot tracking service.

Not sure if you are registered? To verify here and register here. There is still time to receive a ballot.

Just two questions: should we call Newsom back? And which candidate should succeed him?

If you answer one question and not the other, your ballot will still be counted.

There are 46 candidates for governor on the ballot. A complete list of their names is here.

If a majority of voters answer no to the first question, should Newsom be recalled? – then the governor keeps his post. If a majority votes yes, he is out.

But then things get a bit more complicated. If voters choose to replace Newsom, the new governor will be the person who gets the most votes in the second question, even if he is far from a majority.

Here’s how it might play out: Current favorite, talk radio host Larry Elder, has around 20% support among people who want to remember Newsom, according to a recent poll.

Suppose 51% of voters choose to recall Newsom and 20% choose Elder as their replacement. Elder would be our next governor.

This one is complicated. Newsom urged Democrats to ignore the question of who should replace him.

“One question. One answer. No on the reminder. Pass. Send the ballot”, Newsom said at a press conference during the weekend.

But some Democratic strategists think this is unwise, because it “could produce a new governor chosen by only a small fraction of the electorate”, The Los Angeles Times reports. There are nine Democrats on the ballot, though none have significant support in the polls.

Newsom’s first question response strategy is likely an attempt to avoid what happened in 2003, when Governor Gray Davis was recalled and replaced by Arnold Schwarzenegger.

In this election, a prominent Democrat, Cruz Bustamante, was one of the replacement candidates. Some believe Democratic voters may have voted to recall Davis because they believed he would be replaced by Bustamante, another Democrat.

The easiest way is probably to put it back in a drop box.

Here are links to the drop box locations for the 10 most populous counties in the state: Los Angeles, San Diego, Orange, Riverside, Saint-Bernardin, Saint Clare, Alameda, Sacramento, Contra Costa and Fresno. Residents elsewhere should visit their county’s website for information.

You can also mail your ballot as long as it is postmarked by September 14th. Or you can vote in person anytime between September 4 and September 14.

Newsom’s replacement would rule for about a year, until Newsom’s term ends in January 2023. There will be another election in November 2022 to choose who will serve the next four-year term as governor of California.

In the event of a recall, Newsom can run again.

For more:

To celebrate the centennial of their Craftsman home, a San Diego couple went to the county registrar’s office last year to cross out a phrase in their home’s deed of ownership – a line that prohibited anyone “from” other than white or Caucasian ‘to own their home.

For much of the 20th century, racial alliances were used across the United States. And although they are now illegal, ugly language remains in many property records. Read more.


These crispy cornmeal waffles are a weekend staple and the perfect base for Fried Chicken with Berry Jam.


Today’s California travel tip comes from June Oberdorfer, a reader who lives in San Jose. June recommends Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park near Nevada City:

It was the world’s largest hydraulic gold mine, causing significant environmental damage both on site and downstream. There is a small town (original name: Humbug) and a number of hikes: a loop through the mine floor where you can see how nature reclaims the destroyed area, and a longer loop around the cliffs above.

Tell us about the best places to visit in California. Email your suggestions to CAtoday@nytimes.com. We will share more in future editions of the newsletter.


A 29-year-old man in Riverside recently reconnected with his father after finding him on Ancestry.com, The Los Angeles Times reports.

After decades of separation, the two have discovered that their left eyes both squint when they smile and share a love of reading. For the couple, the reunion “was the bright spot in a gloomy pandemic year.”


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