Patricia Boe can’t imagine why anyone would support the recall.
And the Santa Ana resident – a Republican turned Democrat – doesn’t understand why a woman would vote for Tory talk show host Larry Elder, the top GOP candidate to replace Gov. Gavin Newsom if he is recalled in the election. September 14. .
Boe is a member of Moms Demand Action, which advocates for stronger gun laws. She is grateful to Newsom for supporting gun control legislation. She fears the erosion of reproductive rights, especially since Texas has just passed the most restrictive anti-abortion law in the country.
“I can’t even understand if California has followed the same path as Texas,” said the 42-year-old. “And with someone like Larry Elder in the governor’s office, we would be on that path. This is not where I want to see my condition go.
Newsom could have problems, as the recall looms, northern California burns down and COVID-19 rises, but courting female voters is not one of them.
The latest non-partisan Public Policy Institute of California poll released Thursday shows 62% of likely female voters approve of the governor’s job to lead the world’s fifth-largest economy. What about the men? Only 43% approve of the director general of the state.
Even more women – 66% – told the institute they were against the recall. In comparison, more than half of the men likely to vote want to remove Newsom from office before the end of his first term.
There is some logic to supporting women in governor and opposing dismissal. Polls last year show Democrats strongly oppose the recall; women constitute the majority of the Democratic Party in California.
“Democratic women voters are a very, very important source of support for Gavin Newsom,” said Mark Baldassare, President and CEO of PPIC. “For Newsom, it’s all about participation – that this main constituency sends its ballots by mail.”
So far, Newsom has not been very successful in translating support into action. As of Tuesday, women had cast 51% of the mail-in ballots that had been returned.
But political sociologist Mindy Romero, director of the USC Center for Inclusive Democracy, notes that Newsom has made his campaign increasingly urgent in recent weeks as polls have tightened. He turned the choice into a “matter of life and death”, focusing on the pandemic. COVID-19, she said, is a topic that has had a greater impact on women than on men.
Historically, Democrats have focused on issues that matter to women, especially single women and those of color – issues such as reproductive rights, health care, insurance and education.
“For the women who follow all of these things and care about these issues, then you have the ultimate healthcare crisis,” Romero said. Candidates for the replacement, she said, offer “a different kind of argument: the absence of policies,” such as mask and vaccination warrants.
In a tweet accompanying a 30-second ad posted in August, Newsom’s campaign posted: “As far as the COVID-19 vaccine goes, this recall election is a matter of life and death. GOP leader Larry Elder has said he will repeal every vaccination mandate on his first day in office. “
This argument works for voters like Michelle Seow, a licensed marriage and family therapist. As she strolled through Old Town Monrovia on her way to pick up her children from school, the 43-year-old said she heard “a lot of anxiety about COVID and the world” from the community. from his patients.
“I think [Newsom’s] doing a good job, a good job protecting us from COVID, ”she said. “I like the way he thinks about people’s needs. … I follow him on Instagram. He goes to different sites where the fires are. It gives me the impression that he is invested.
Deborah Engle, a 72-year-old woman from Laguna Beach, said she was baffled by the motivation behind the recall.
“I just don’t understand why people would want to recall a governor who has tried everything to help people deal with the COVID crisis,” she said. “I was happy that he took care of us older people when he said early on that we had to stay home.”
The mask warrants the governor rendered from 2020, she said, were not “something strange that he just invented to make people uncomfortable.” It was to protect us, and I appreciated that approach.
The feeling that Newsom cares about the needs of ordinary people is also why Yessenia Contreras, 45, a driver for the Shipt grocery delivery service, is opposed to the recall.
On Thursday afternoon, she was packing her own groceries in her trunk at Boyle Heights Food 4 Less and getting ready to pick up her son from Roosevelt High School.
“I love what he does for my community,” Contreras, who lives in the heavily Latino neighborhood, said of Newsom. “From what I’m seeing, I think he’s doing a good job on things like rental programs for low-income communities and food gifts.”
And she is not surprised, she says, that women support his candidacy: “He’s a handsome guy. Maybe that could be the reason.
Another key finding from the PPIC poll is that 61% of likely female voters said the current effort to recall the governor is not an appropriate use of the recall process (compared to 44% of men). And 47% of women said life in California would be worse if the recall was successful (compared to 34% of men).
“I’m not sure why the recall is happening,” said Stacey Storey, a 31-year-old Democrat from Monrovia, as she looked for lunch in Old Town, walking with her pit bull mix, Agnes. “I voted for no recall. I’m sick of there being so much politics. I have the impression that we are hanging around.
India Shoush, a registered independent who is considering voting no on the recall, said Thursday afternoon that “this is not how the process is supposed to work.”
She’s not a big fan of the governor. When asked what she thought of him, the 37-year-old replied, “Hey. He’s a handsome politician. We could probably do better. But, as she stood in line to buy tamales at the Me Gusta food truck at the El Segundo farmer’s market, she argued, “there is no good enough reason to call it back.”
“We have an election soon,” she said, noting that voters can dump Newsom when he runs in 2022. “The economy is coming back. And I believe in mask mandates.”
Women, however, are far from a monolithic electoral bloc. After all, while 56% of likely female voters are Democrats, 44% are not. The PPIC estimates that 25% are Republicans and 17% registered without party preferences. Of the likely male voters, 40% are Democrats, 27% are Republicans, and 27% registered without party preference.
Shannon Quintana, 45, said she didn’t know who Newsom was until COVID-19 forced widespread stay-at-home orders in California.
“That was literally the first day that they started shutting everything down, and he popped up on the screen, and I was like, ‘Who is this guy? “” said the Huntington Beach Republican.
As the pandemic progressed and business closures continued, she quickly began to dislike him – enough to vote for his ouster. Over the past year or so, she has watched small business friends struggle to stay afloat. It appeared that the pandemic was not affecting Newsom in the same way, she said.
“People were losing their livelihoods and its wineries remained open,” she said. Newsom is a partial owner of the PlumpJack vineyard group, which he placed in a blind trust before becoming governor. “It was good for him, but other people were hurting.”