California’s second gubernatorial recall election in history is shaping up to be pretty different from the first.
Just 46 candidates filed all the paperwork necessary by the July 16 deadline to run to replace Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom in the Sept. 14 recall — a field that includes GOP politicians, a reality TV personality, a YouTuber, a retired detective, a cannabis advocate, several business owners and even a new-age shaman.
What it doesn’t include: Anyone with the star power that actor and body builder Arnold Schwarzenegger enjoyed when he disrupted the political scene in 2003 and ousted then-Gov. Gray Davis. It also doesn’t include any prominent Democrats who might be seen as a viable alternative to Newsom by California’s overwhelmingly blue electorate.
That’s good news for Newsom as he fights to keep his job, said the man who managed Davis’ unsuccessful campaign against the 2003 recall.
“The biggest problem was Arnold getting in and galvanizing the recall vote. And the second biggest problem was (Democratic Lt. Gov. Cruz) Bustamante getting in,” said Democratic consultant Garry South.
“In this current field, there is nobody who can have that kind of impact.”
But a lot will hinge on how many Californians decide to vote. Polls show that Republicans are enthusiastic about the recall, while Democrats are not very tuned in that it’s happening. Even though, overall, Democrats…