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California Gov. Newsom is second in state's history to face recall election

The 1.5 million threshold was passed in April, but there was a 30-day period to withdraw signatures. Just 43 were withdrawn.
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The effort to recall Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom has more than enough signatures to proceed, the state's election official said Wednesday.

Backers of the recall passed the 1.5 million signature threshold in April, but there was then a 30-day period where people who wanted to withdraw their signatures were given a chance to do so.

Just 43 signatures were withdrawn, leaving 1,719,900 verified signatures to initiate the recall election, the California Secretary of State's Office said in a statement. Secretary of State Shirley N. Weber on Wednesday notified the state finance department of the result.

According to the Secretary of State's Office, there have been 54 efforts to recall California governors since the power was put in the state constitution in 1911.

Only one succeeded. Gov. Gray Davis was recalled in 2003, and he was replaced by actor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Only 10 recall efforts have actually made it on the ballot since 1913, and only Davis' involved a governor. Three state senators and two Assembly members have been successfully recalled.

The state Department of Finance will now estimate the cost of the recall. State analysts have estimated the cost to be $215 million.

The lieutenant governor will set the date, although state laws affect that.

Once on the ballot, voters will be asked whether Newsom should be recalled and to select a replacement candidate.

Among those who have said they are running are former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and John Cox, a businessman who ran against Newsom in 2018 and lost by double digits.

Caitlyn Jenner, the former Olympian and longtime Republican, has also announced she will run with the pledge to be a "compassionate disruptor."

Newsom has been criticized for restrictions put in place amid the coronavirus pandemic, which include businesses and religious services being curtailed.

Newsom has called the effort a "partisan, Republican recall" and vowed to fight it.