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8.07.2003

BeeBlogger Daniel Weintraub offers this analysis of the recall election. To me the most interesting idea comes towards the end, with Weintraub writing

And to those still wringing their hands about the effect all of this has on the "political process," I have this to say. Tonight and Thursday, more people will be talking and thinking about California politics and government than ever before. And from the looks of it, those people will have more viable choices in an election for governor than ever before. Commentators have been complaining about the lack of civic engagement and the lack of decent choices for a long time. Now we have engagement, and we have choices. Relax. Enjoy it.

I agree with his conclusion about engagement, but the first sentence shows some sensitivity to criticism of the recall based on its lack of political viability. My point -- which I made in an as yet unanswered email to Weintraub -- is that this criticism of the recall is a nonstarter. Why? It's written into the constitution of the state, that's why:

CALIFORNIA CONSTITUTION
ARTICLE 2
VOTING, INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM, AND RECALL

SEC. 13. Recall is the power of the electors to remove an elective officer.

CALIFORNIA CONSTITUTION
ARTICLE 2 VOTING, INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM, AND RECALL

SEC. 14. (a) Recall of a state officer is initiated by delivering to the Secretary of State a petition alleging reason for recall. Sufficiency of reason is not reviewable. Proponents have 160 days to file signed petitions.


California constitution provision shamelessly lifted from Calblogger Justene Adamec.

Where's the debate? Is a matter of lack of frequency of recalls in the past? Is it that -- gasp -- petition signatures were bought and paid for? Why should this be a problem? Politicains are always for sale . . . why not petition signers? Could the real plaint behind this be that there's great unpredictability in this for the political class as a group? I think we have a winner!

Blogreference: see Robert Musil's take on this: he already has a prediction . . . and it's not looking good for Davis!

UPDATE: Okay, okay, here's Musil's money graf:

My prediction: Simon, McClintock and Ueberroth will throw their support to Arnold Schwarzenegger within days.


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