Nationally syndicated radio talk show host Larry Elder announced this week he is running for California Governor in the Sept. 14 Recall Election of current Governor Gavin Newsom. Elder opened his daily radio show on Monday, declaring, "We've got a country to save." Starting with California, Elder added he will fight to rebuild the state's future following Newsom's disastrous policies. Elder said:
"I'm running for governor because the decline of California isn't the fault of its people. Our government is what's ruining the Golden State. Our schools are closed to both students and their parents. Our streets aren't safe from rising violent crime or the disaster of rising homelessness. And the scandals of Sacramento aren't going to stop on their own. It's time to tell the truth. We've got a state to save."
In addition to "The Larry Elder Show," Elder, 69, who has never run for public office, is an attorney, a bestselling author, award-winning documentary filmmaker, and newspaper columnist. Born and raised in South Central LA, Elder's parents moved to California and raised their three boys. Elder noted on his radio show that his mom was a stay-at-home mom, and they lived on his dad's salary, something that isn't possible in California today.
Elder has been vocal in his support for recalling Newsom, who he has referred to as "this arrogant Democrat Governor." Elder has pointed out the great lengths Newsom has taken to avoid a recall—like approving in Jan. $2.6 billion in rental assistance but only releasing less than 5% so far—all while California "schools are closed to both students and their parents. Our streets aren't safe from rising violent crime or the disaster of rising homelessness. And the scandals of Sacramento aren't going to stop on their own. It's time to tell the truth. We've got a state to save." Elder continued:
"I have common sense. I have good judgment. I'm born and raised here. I think I understand the state. I think this is a race between Gavin Newsom and me. I don't think about the other candidates."
Outrage against Newsom and his failed policies gained momentum when the governor was caught dining with friends at the swanky French Laundry restaurant while instructing California residents to avoid social gatherings and stay at home. Photos revealed Newsom sitting inside at a cozy table, not wearing a mask at the restaurant, where a white truffle and caviar dinner costs $1,200 per person.
Aware of the battle ahead, Elder remarked that the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) had poured $5 million into the anti-recall campaign, acknowledging "They're going to come after me with a vengeance." Elder explained that his name recognition, outsider status, and communication skills separate him from the crowd.
Speaking of Elder joining the race, Newsom campaign spokesman Dan Newman called Elder "another Trump supporter" bidding for a piece of President Trump's voter base. In the recall election, voters will be asked two questions: First, should Newsom be removed? And then, who should replace him? Voters will choose from a list of registered replacement candidates. However, the second votes only come into play if a majority votes yes on the first question. Republicans maintain Elder's presence in the race will further support the critical first question on the ballot. Several prominent GOP Leaders plan to join the race to replace Gavin Newsom in the recall election, which will cost approximately $276 million, according to the state Finance Department.
The deadline to file for candidacy in the recall election is Friday, July 16, 2021. To be eligible to enter the race, candidates must be a U.S. citizen, a registered California voter, and never convicted of a felony. If qualified, individuals must receive 65 to 100 nomination signatures and pay a filing fee of $4,194.94 before declaring their candidacy. As of July 14, 76 individuals had filed to run in the recall election. Among those are former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer (R), 2018 gubernatorial candidate John Cox (R), former U.S. Rep. Doug Ose (R), and Caitlyn Jenner (R). The complete list of candidates can be found here.