California Gov. Gavin Newsom could be on his way out of office due to a Republican-led push to recall him. But the Republican-led effort to oust a Democrat who won the 2018 election with nearly 62% of the vote may be more difficult than it seems. 

After months of gathering signatures, Tuesday marks the final day for voters who signed the petition for the recall to have their names removed. If the required number of signatures remains on the petition, it means a special election will most likely take place in autumn.

In order for a recall to happen in California, a petition needs to be signed by “enough registered voters to equal 12% of the turnout in the last election for governor” and about 1% of the last vote for the office in at least five counties.

Signatures on the petition must then be verified by the California secretary of state. From there, the state finance department will determine the cost of a special election within 30 days, followed by a joint legislative budget committee, which has a month to review calculations.

Next, the petition must be certified by the secretary of state and the lieutenant governor will then set an election date. A reason for the recall is not required but is often given by petition organizers.

Although residents in California initially approved of Newson’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, the inconsistent mandates and constant shutdowns for businesses and schools pushed some voters to their limits.

Many appeared to reach their breaking point when photos of Newsom, maskless at an expensive restaurant, were leaked in November.

But the tide may have turned and Democrats and unions appear to be rallying in support of Newsom. On Saturday, California’s largest teachers union pledged to defend him in the recall election. In May, the Democratic Governors Association contributed $500,000 to Newsom and the California Democratic Party has contributed over $690,000, Politico noted.

The move to oust Newsom only marks the second time a recall attempt against a California governor has qualified for the ballot. In the 2003 recall, Democrat Gray Davis was removed from office and Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger was elected governor.

Political strategists have noted that there is no Republican in the current field who has wide-reaching appeal to win. Some of the candidates include businessman John Cox and reality show personality Caitlyn Jenner.

Goveror Gavin Newsom signed a new California law that requires rideshare firms such as Uber and Lyft to treat its contract drivers as employees Goveror Gavin Newsom signed a new California law that requires rideshare firms such as Uber and Lyft to treat its contract drivers as employees Photo: GETTY IMAGES / JUSTIN SULLIVAN