(The Center Square) – Hundreds of protestors gathered Sunday outside the state Capitol building in Sacramento after the RecallGavin2020 campaign announced it had gathered more than 1.9 million signatures to force a special election to recall Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom.
Independent reporter Brendan Gutenschwager tweeted a video of protestors chanting "goodbye Newsom" near the end of the rally on Sunday. A
The RecallGavin2020 campaign made its latest signature announcement at the Hyatt Regency Sacramento hotel located across the street from the Capitol. Its spokesperson, Randy Economy, said, "We would like to announce as of today we have 1,950,000 signatures. That is more than enough to have this special initiative qualify for a special election."
That’s an increase from just five days prior when the campaign announced on March 3 that it had gathered more than 1,927,000 signatures.
According to state law, 1,497,709 verified signatures are required to trigger a recall election.
Orrin Heatlie, chairman of the California Patriot Coalition and head of RecallGavin2020 Committee, said, “We have cleared another milestone, and now we are entering the final stretch of this part of the official campaign to remove California Governor Gavin Newsom from power and office.”
The deadline to submit additional signatures is March 17.
If enough signatures are declared valid by the secretary of state’s office, a special election will be held between 60 and 80 days from the announcement.
A spokesperson for Newsom told CBS News13 Sacramento, "The Republican recall scheme is a transparently partisan attempt to install a Trump supporter as governor of a state that elected Newsom and rejected Trump in historic landslides."
Yet Democrats note that the recall movement is comprised of a wide range of Californians that expands beyond political parties.
And Republican State Assemblyman Kevin Kiley, who has successfully sued the governor over his executive orders, says supporters of the recall represent first-time voters as well.
Kiley has held 25 recall events, traveling as far south as San Diego and as far north as Yreka.
“I talk to a lot of people on this tour … a lot of Democrats,’’ Kiley told Politico. “And the thing I hear most – and this is what I think makes the recall powerful – is that they’ve never been involved in politics before, they’ve never paid much attention to it. And now they’re out gathering signatures and recruiting their friends. I think that’s a fundamental change.”
The last time a California governor was recalled was in 2003 when voters removed Democratic governor Gray Davis and replaced him with Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger.
If Newsom is recalled, he will be the third governor to be successfully recalled in U.S. history and the second in California history.