California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) will remain in office as voters resoundingly rejected the Republican Party’s attempt to recall him, and one of the people who challenged him for his office is really not taking it well.
But even among the challengers who were defeated yesterday, Caitlyn Jenner had a weak showing. Only 1% of voters picked her to replace Newsom, putting her in 13th place among the challengers for the governor’s office. If she had won, she would have been the first out transgender governor in the U.S.
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“‘No’ is not the only thing that was expressed tonight,” Newsom said in his victory speech. “I want to focus on what we said ‘yes’ to as a state: We said yes to science, we said yes to vaccines, we said yes to ending this pandemic.”
Voters in California were asked two questions: whether to recall Newsom and who should replace him.
Over two-thirds of the votes have been counted, and “No” on the question of whether to recall Newsom is up by 30 points. The New York Times CNN, and the AP have called the election for Newsom.
On the second question, Jenner has only received 1% of the vote, with just 56,000 votes so far. She conceded at a party last night in Los Angeles and called out California voters for making the wrong decision.
“I can’t believe that this many people actually voted to keep him in office,” Jenner said. “You kind of get the government you deserve.”
She also attacked Newsom, saying he “didn’t campaign on not one of his successes, because he doesn’t have any.”
Caitlyn Jenner, a GOP candidate in California's recall, speaks after the vote to remove Gov. Newsom failed: "I can't believe that this many people actually voted to keep him in office. It's a shame." https://t.co/cagDpkFQdS pic.twitter.com/2cONQbrtMu
— CBS News (@CBSNews) September 15, 2021
Conservative radio host Larry Elder was the top challenger, getting over two million votes. He has already conceded, and, unlike Jenner, he took the high road.
“Let’s be gracious in defeat,” Elder said at an Orange County rally. “We may have lost the battle but we are going to win the war.”
The result might not be surprising because of the gaffes that plagued Jenner’s campaign, like complaining about seeing homeless people on the way to her private airplane hangar, flaking out of media appearances, lying about not voting last year, insulting other trans people and opposing trans rights, and flying to Australia during the campaign to participate in a reality show.
Her campaign started with high hopes. Jenner was able to hire experienced GOP strategists to manage her campaign, big names who have helped run successful national campaigns in the past.
While her early campaign centered on removing COVID-19 restrictions – before it became apparent that she was far more passionate about expressing her antipathy towards the unhoused – most voters apparently did not agree with her. Of those who did, they found other Republican candidates more appealing, like Elder, who opposes masks and vaccines for children.