San Diego

John Cox and Kevin Faulconer Talk Candidacy, Governor Newsom Recall Effort

While state officials have not announced a date for the recall election, two Republican candidates with San Diego ties have emerged hoping to land the job

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Organizers of the petition to recall Governor Gavin Newsom say they collected more than 1.6 million signatures which is well above the 1.49 million they needed to trigger a special election.

While we're still weeks away from an election budget being finalized and a date for an election being set, two politicians with San Diego ties have emerged as candidates for the job.

John Cox is a former businessman and attorney who ran for governor against Newsom in 2018. He also lives in San Diego.

"I think there are recalls when the state is in a sense of crisis and they feel like every single day makes a difference," Cox said.

Former San Diego Mayor and City Council Member Kevin Faulconer said replacing Newsom should be an urgent priority.

"It's time for a California comeback. It's time to really get our state back on track, to make our state more affordable and more livable for the average Californian," Faulconer said.

While the petition to recall Governor Newsom was launched before the pandemic, many political analysts say the Governor's decisions during the pandemic helped the recall movement gain momentum.

"What made this a political reality was the pandemic and the difficult and ultimately controversial decisions that Governor Newsom made to shut down parts of the state's economy, most of the state's schools, all of that and then his fateful decision to have dinner at the fancy French Laundry restaurant," said Thad Kousser, Ph.D. chair of UCSD's political science department.

On the actual ballot, there will be two questions. First is, "Do you think Governor Newsom should be recalled?" If more than 50% of the voters say no, then Newsom stays in office. If more than 50% say yes, then the state will refer to the second question, which will allow voters to pick a candidate they think should replace him. State officials are projecting the special recall election would cost approximately $215 million.

To hear more from Kevin Faulconer and John Cox on why they're running, tune in to NBC 7's "Politically Speaking" on Sunday, June 27 at 4:30 p.m.

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