California Democrats try to rig the recall in favor of Newsom
The recall effort that seeks to remove California Gov. Gavin Newsom from office has plenty of verified signatures to make the ballot. But before that can happen, California law requires a number of additional steps and evaluations that can take several weeks to complete.
Or at least that’s what the law says right now. California Democrats, who control both state legislative chambers, are actively working to change the recall procedures they created in order to protect Newsom. It’s not going over well. The San Francisco Chronicle – which in no fan of the recall – writes:
…while tinkering with the scheduling of an election is not as offensive to democracy as suppressing votes — the preferred approach among Republican legislatures — it does undermine Democratic criticism of such manipulation even as the party pushes crucial voting rights legislation in Congress. Last week, Newsom himself accused Republicans in Washington of trying to “rig the rules of American elections” in their favor, which is what his own party is doing for him.
Moreover, in moving to give themselves the option of skipping a 30-day legislative review of the estimated recall costs, California Democrats are effectively undoing rules they invented to try to save one of their own a few years ago. The Legislature instituted the review period and other steps in 2017 to slow-walk a recall election targeting state Sen. Josh Newman, an Orange County Democrat, also for perceived partisan advantage. (It didn’t work.)
Finally, the Legislature moved to speed up the recall even as it was working to delay the election of a U.S. senator. A bill passed by the Assembly is designed to help keep Newsom appointee Alex Padilla in Vice President Kamala Harris’ vacated Senate seat for nearly two years before voters get their constitutionally mandated say in the matter.
Democrats, rigging elections to suit their own, narrow political ends? Of course – that’s what politicians do. Including Democrats. And it stinks to high heaven.