The media is filled with lots of arm-chair quarterbacking about the California recall and lessons learned. Our pals at Electoral-Vote did the work and gathered the headlines:
The dust has settled a bit in California, so lists of takeaways are starting to pop up. Here are a few of them:
- A strict pandemic policy is a winner
- Will Elder run against Newsom in 2022?
- Lessons from California may not apply elsewhere where Elder is not on the ballot
- In the end, Elder didn’t claim the election was stolen and refuse to concede
- The huge cost of the election is prompting calls for recall reform
- Does Newsom have a mandate now to push liberal policies?
- Will constant claims of rigged elections depress turnout for Republicans in the future?
- COVID-19 put Newsom in jeopardy but also saved him
- Larry Elder was not a good candidate and Newsom would love to face him in 2022
- Recall reform is likely to happen now
- Republicans started this and they got crushed
- A big win in California doesn’t protect the Democrats from losing the House in 2022
- Republicans might not even need Orange County to take over the House in 2022
- The threat of a Trumpist winning is still a powerful motivator for Democrats
- Being famous doesn’t mean you win—just ask Larry Elder
- Elder won’t have any impact on 2022
- The polls were pretty good and in a tough election to poll
- The SurveyUSA poll was an outlier, but it caused people to panic even though outliers are normal
- Most of the political handicappers got it spot on
- Newsom’s margin was even bigger than expected
- Donald Trump is hurting the GOP
- Vaccinated voters are pro-vaccine
- Mobilization of voters still works and has implications for 2022
- Polling averages are better than individual polls
- Newsom is back in the national conversation
- Democrats have the cover they need to pursue recall reform
Gov. Newsom says that Democrats needs to “lean in” on COVID-19 prevention:
“So, what I’m saying here is, be affirmative. Don’t be timid. Lean in. Because at the end of the day, it’s not just about formal authority of setting the tone and tenor on masks — on vaccines and masks. But it’s the moral authority that we have: that we’re on the right side of history and we’re doing the right thing to save people’s lives.”
…but here’s my blunt assessment: it was more about Trump/Elder than it was about Gavin Newsom & the Trump-Virus. And because this was wide-open and not machine politics, the Republican base chose their preferred candidate and the Republicans didn’t have a chance. Tiger Beat on the Potomac (thanks Charlie) says:
Elder drew more than five times as many votes as his nearest Republican rival, former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, in the initial vote tally.
The Pod Save Whatevs guys’ email thingie:
- Unfortunately, we can’t count on landslides to smother the zombie Big Lie in most elections, and it’s not about to fade away: In a new CNN poll, 59 percent of GOP voters said that believing Trump won the 2020 election is an important part of being a Republican. And while GOP candidates casually fold Donald Trump’s fraud narrative into their own campaigns, Trump is going around systematically endorsing Big Lie-promoters for secretary of state positions, in preparation to take another stab at stealing the presidency in 2024. Not great!
That ass-kicking Elder got was a proxy for Trump; the Republicans have a YUGE problem if the base keeps nominating nut jobs that can easily be lashed to Hair Füror.