Premium

In Depth: New CA Recall Poll Spells Bad News for Gavin Newsom, Good News for Larry Elder

AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File

It is no secret: California is an absolute disaster. Between the increasingly dangerous homeless situation and its accompanying rise in crime and the continued failure of the state government to provide a modicum of return for the highest taxes in the nation, it is an outright miserable place to be. Add in the ridiculous, unscientific, and unconstitutional mandates during the COVID-19 pandemic, and Gavin Newsom has little reason to believe he should be anywhere near the Governor’s mansion.  Recent polling conducted in the state suggests that California voters are increasingly in agreement with that sentiment.

An Emerson Poll now out spells increasingly bad news for Newsom as we jump into the final weeks of the recall election.  his latest poll in the series of three thus far shows that Newsom’s once comfortable six-point lead has now been whittled down to just two.

While many would suggest that the vote to keep Newsom is still ahead of the recall vote, the “vote to recall” option was able to convert the totality of the undecided conversions since the last poll, or 3% of the vote. This is bad news for Newsom because if the trend continues, it could lead to the remaining 6% of undecideds jumping on the boot-Newsom train. In the event that should happen, Newsom would be recalled.

Additionally of concern to Newsom are the increased lockdown and COVID-19 mandates that may be coming as a result of the Delta variant. Newsom’s polling numbers particularly suffered under his horrible handling of the COVID-19 lockdowns compounded with his continued hypocritical actions, including eating maskless at a high-end restaurant. Interestingly, the poll did not ask any questions about Newsom’s hypocritical behavior, which would have been an enlightening note.

Which brings us to the second part of this poll: Should Newsom be recalled, who would replace Newsom as Governor?  Right now conservative radio host Larry Elder enjoys a healthy 16-point lead over his next biggest threat, businessman John Cox, 23 to 7. Cox, who failed in his bid against Newsom in 2018, is statistically tied with reality star and Olympic Gold Medalist, Caitlyn Jenner. The field rounds out with California Assemblyman Kevin Kiley, who has been endorsed by RedState’s California Editorial Team, and former Mayor of San Diego Kevin Faulconer.  The race is still early, as 40% of respondents stated they remain undecided.

As many of you may remember from my previous pieces on polling, I often find a number of problems with the methodology, which can lead to outcomes that do not reflect the overall opinion of the voters that they are meant to reflect.  Oftentimes, the greatest issue with polling is in the sampling. Most polls, which are conducted by media organizations, contain oversampling of Democrats, usually by double digits. This poll nearly matched California party affiliation statistics.

My only concerns are 1) that the poll was conducted both on the phone and by online survey, which can lead to issues in results, and 2) that voter registration was self-reported, meaning that the respondents themselves stated they were registered, which sometimes is not accurate. Aside from that, I am very impressed with the result.

Of note from the crosstabs:

  • 22% of Democrats are voting to recall.  That’s huge.
  • 54.1% of Independents are voting to recall.
  • 16% of Republicans are voting to keep Newsom.  I have NO idea what planet they are on.
  • 7.5% of Biden Voters, are still undecided about the recall. That’s compared to just 2.2% of Trump voters.
  • Non-Binary voters (who classify themselves as neither male nor female) prefer Elder over Jenner.
  • 54% of Latino voters are in support of the recall.  That’s compared to 48% of white voters.
  • A majority of young voters (18-29) are voting to recall Newsom, 50% to 33%.  Ironically, Caitlyn Jenner does the best in this crowd.
  • Newsom loses Northern, Central, and Southern California, winning the “No” vote in Los Angeles County and the Bay Area.

Interesting crosstabs missing from the final data include party affiliation and method of voting.  A majority of voters said they are going to vote by mail, which in a way favors Newsom; however, if we could see how people planned on voting, we could better understand the issue. Certainly, weighed into this is the unconstitutional order to send ballots to every voter in California, which significantly increases the potential for fraud, but hey, we already know how this turns out.  The good news is, all of the people who claim this is undemocratic, may soon find that their “Republican recall” is actually the will of the majority of the people.