Recalls in California History
The recall is a rarely used process that permits a public vote to determine whether a public official will be removed from office. Recalls are initiated by the circulation of petitions; for statewide offices, the number of signatures needed is 12% of the votes cast in the last election. For all other partisan offices, the number of signatures is 20% of the votes cast in the last election. In both cases, the petition circulators are on a sharp deadline; the signatures are due 160 days after the Secretary of State approves the language for the petition.
The high number of signatures needed is a major hurdle that most recall campaigns are unable to overcome; since 1913, only nine of the 161 attempted recalls (Source) have qualified for the ballot.
After signatures are approved by the Secretary of State and the election is called, it must occur in the next 60 to 80 days. The election ballot will feature two questions; the first asks the voter to vote on whether the official should be recalled (ex. "Shall Gray Davis be recalled (removed) from the office of governor?") and the second question asks the voter to identify the candidate that they prefer in the event that the recall is successfull. The two questions are independent and it is possible to vote no on the first question and still select a candidate in the second.
|2008||State Sen.||Jeff Denham||R||Fail|
|2003||Governor||Gray Davis||D||Pass||A. Schwarzenegger||R|
|1995||ASM||Doris Allen||R||Pass||Scott Baugh||R|
|1995||ASM||Paul V. Horcher||R||Pass||Gary G. Miller||R|
|1994||State Sen.||David Roberti||D||Fail|
|1914||State Sen.||Edwin Grant||D||Pass||Ed Wolfe||R|
|1914||State Sen.||James Owens||D||Fail|
|1913||State Sen.||Marshall Black||R||Pass||Herbert C. Jones||R|