Davis recall is line drawn in the sand

A recall campaign against Gov. Gray Davis funded by $800,000
from a conservative Southern California congressman seems more and
more likely to reach the ballot, but this Republican-led drive to
recall Davis, a Democrat, is misguided and a waste of taxpayers’
money, and nothing more than a political party drawing a line in
the sand.
A recall campaign against Gov. Gray Davis funded by $800,000 from a conservative Southern California congressman seems more and more likely to reach the ballot, but this Republican-led drive to recall Davis, a Democrat, is misguided and a waste of taxpayers’ money, and nothing more than a political party drawing a line in the sand.

Recall advocates are misusing a rightful course of action that should be used to remove an official for corruption, abuse of power or office or serious malfeasance. In this case, however, recall proponents are using it as a way to overturn results of an election based only on political differences.

With Rep. Darrell Issa’s, R-Vista, money funding the drive, supporters say they have 700,000 of the 897,158 signatures of support, or 12 percent of the turnout in last November’s gubernatorial race, they must collect by Sept. 2 to put the measure on the November ballot.

Davis, a lame duck governor because of term limits, has the lowest approval rating of any California governor in 55 years, and carries reasons for Californians to be angry with the direction he has provided.

Proponents blame Davis for covering up the depth of the state’s fiscal woes until after his re-election last November and allowing a state budget shortfall to increase to $38.2 billion.

Davis blames the national recession for problems in California. He denied any cover-up, saying the problem was simply worse than budget experts had anticipated.

Initially, Davis had nothing to fear from the recall threat. Not one of the 31 campaigns against California governors has made it to the ballot.

But this one is fueled by the deep pockets of Issa, who – now get this – has already set up a gubernatorial campaign committee.

If this recall effort were to make it to a special election, it would cost taxpayers $25 million to $35 million, money the state doesn’t have. It would ask voters two questions: Should Davis be removed? If so, which of any number of candidates should replace him?

Issa has said the drive is a rightful action to give voters the right to select a more competent governor. We believe if Davis is recalled and those who have drove the campaign do not like the winner, another recall would rear its head.

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