The Student News Site of Sonoma State University

Sonoma State Star

The Student News Site of Sonoma State University

Sonoma State Star

The Student News Site of Sonoma State University

Sonoma State Star

    Recalls and revenge on the ballot this September


    Sonoma County has a very small but significant ballot coming up on September 14. There are two items on the ballot: the recall contests of Governor Gavin Newsom and District Attorney Jill Ravitch. 

    This is the second time there has been a gubernatorial recall on the ballot in California. The other time was the successful recall of Governor Grey Davis in 2003. 

    The main reason for the recall of Newsom, as declared in the official recall statement, is that he “has implemented laws detrimental to the citizens of this state and our way of life.”

    Newsom’s response has been to put blame on the Republican Party. His official response to the recall was that “a handful of partisan activists supporting President Trump and his dangerous agenda to divide America are trying to overturn the definitive will of California voters and bring Washington’s broken government to California.” 

    According to the current polls have those wanting to recall Newsom at 43.6% versus those not wanting to recall him at 52.1%. They also place Republican talk radio host Larry Elder as the leading candidate with 22.6%. 

    FiveThirtyEight has Kevin Paffrath, a financial analyst and Youtuber, as the leading Democratic candidate with 10.2 % of votes. 

    There are 46 candidates running in the recall election. Of those, 24 are running for the Republican Party and nine for the Democratic Party. 

    The charges against Ravitch are varied. The official recall statement cites them as “pressing issues of inequality, injustice and fire safety failures.”

    This differs slightly from the Recall Ravitch website, which on the “Why Recall” page states nothing about “fire safety failures.” The website instead doubles down on supposed injustices, particularly that “Jill Ravitch has a history of cronyism and hypocracy [sic].” 

    The biggest contributor to the Recall Ravitch campaign is William Gallaher, a Sonoma county developer. 

    According to the latest filed committee campaign statement, Gallaher has contributed around $1.5 million dollars through 2020. He donated $632,000 in the month of August alone. 

    The Voters Opposed to Recalling Ravitch head Terry Price has called this a “revenge recall,” reports the Press Democrat. 

    A poll done by the Press Democrat in early August had 47 percent of respondents voting to not recall Ravitch but only 26 percent voting for the recall.  

    Unlike with Newsom, no replacement candidates were able to make it onto the local ballot. 

    Ravitch has served as district attorney since 2011 and had planned to retire following this term.

    Voters seeking to find out more information should visit the website for the Sonoma County Registrar of Voters. They can also find more information from Ballotpedia, a nonpartisan nonprofit, that according to their website, seeks to “inform people about politics by providing accurate and objective information.”

    Anyone who wants to register to vote should visit Unfortunately, the deadline to register for the September 14 election has passed, but you can still register for future elections. Anyone 16 or 17 can also pre-register at the same website.

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