DEMOCRACY EMERGENCY!

We’ve got a democracy emergency here in California. We’ve got this recall election of the Governor coming up on September 14. It is a completely undemocratic, and even unconstitutional event. We need to work really hard starting now because people are now receiving their mail-in ballots, and keep it up until Election Day. Otherwise, we could end up with a right-wing Republican governor for our fair state.

Don’t let the Republicans fire our democratically elected Governor!

That’s right. A right-wing Republican Governor is a very strong possibility unless we bust our asses until September 14th to get the word out to vote “No” on the recall.

Run — Don’t Walk — to Stop Newsom Recall!

California Republicans, mostly from San Diego, the most conservative city in California, pay to circulate petitions calling for a special election to recall an elected official. If you have enough money, you can get pretty much ANYTHING on the ballot.

Larry Elder, who will very probably be Governor if Newsom loses, is a right-wing Republican talk show host who has used his platform to spread the lies of anti-vax conspiracy theorists. Elder wants to abolish the minimum wage and bring back capital punishment. He is a Black man who believes racism is not a problem in America. It would be a catastrophe for this state if Larry Elder ends up Governor.

And it very well could happen.

Gavin Newsom hasn’t committed any of the outrages that cause people to want to throw a Trump or a Cuomo out of office before their term is up. This recall movement has no horrible abuses or violations of oath of office that they can point to. No, his opponents just don’t like the decisions Newsom has made, like abolishing capital punishment. They will NEVER forgive him for that. Fine! Then they should run someone who represents their side in the next election, which is in 2022, only one year away. That’s democracy. But they really have very little chance of winning a normal election for governor in this very blue state. Their chances of undoing the last election through a recall are much better. It costs the taxpayers a lot of money to hold an election. So Republicans are forcing the state to spend $276 million (according to the state Dept. of Finance) on this undemocratic recall. Suddenly, saving taxpayers’ money isn’t important to Republicans if it gives them a chance to grab power they could never grab otherwise.

Many Democratic voters don’t even know that the recall is happening. They just aren’t paying attention. Or, if they do know, they think that California is so blue, that defeat is in the bag.

But it’s not in the bag, and every vote to stop the recall is important.

The Republicans know this is their only chance to grab the governor’s office, and they have been very busy contacting all the people who:

  • Want to bring back capital punishment
  • Want to eliminate the minimum wage, and…
  • Demand the freedom to catch the delta variant any damn way they please.

This is a time for ACTION. Click here to donate, volunteer & find more info on the recall.

I signed up to phone bank and canvas. It felt so good. I’ll definitely phone bank this week, and I’m hoping I’ll be doing door-to-door canvassing. That’s the most time-consuming way to campaign and also the most effective. There’s nothing like a heart-to-heart chat with an undecided voter. While masked and distanced, of course. I’m also putting a sign in my window.

Volunteer. Donate. Put a sign in your window. Tell everyone you know how important it is to vote “No” in the recall. Forward this blog far and wide to Californians you know.

And I would ask all of you non-Californians — many of whom have lived here — to donate money to the “No” campaign. Any amount will help. A right-wing governor here will be very bad news for the whole country.

Governor Newsom was the first in the nation to mandate that all school staff be vaccinated or tested weekly. I’m grateful to him for that. I want him to be in charge while we deal with the Delta variant. We are in danger of replacing Newsom with someone who gives a radio platform to anti-vax conspiracy nuts, a man who believes the freedom to infect others is a god-given right.

Newsom was elected in 2018. He has one more year in office. He deserves to finish his term.

You know, even though I’m a native, I’ve never thought very much about what it means to be a Californian. I’m very identified with my city and with my country. But a state, especially one so big, is an abstract concept. It’s defined by invisible lines — sometimes drawn quite literally in the sand. All of California’s borders are like that — except of course the western border, the Pacific Ocean.

California didn’t use to be so Democratic. After all, the voters here sent Reagan on his political journey. Many, including me, feel Reagan seeded the low-tax anti-government pro-big business movement that fully blossomed under Trump.

But our state has come to be a place where the future happens — be it gay marriage (thank you, Gov. Newsom) or Clean Power. At this moment in our political life, it would truly be a tragedy if an undemocratically elected right-wing Republican became governor. If Elder had been Governor, he would have appointed a Republican to replace Kamala Harris as Senator, giving the G.O.P the Senate majority. The fierce struggles now going on in the Senate would not be happening. The progress we’ve made under Biden would be a distant dream.

Sometimes the most important thing you can do is stop something bad from happening.

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Terry Baum is an actress, director, teacher, filmmaker, political activist, and award-winning lesbian playwright. Her blog BAUMBLOG is a “Top 100 LGBTQ Blog.”