Voters elect total recall for Davis:
Arnold to eliminate license fees
October 10, 2003
For the first time since Lynn Frazier received the boot as governor
of North Dakota in 1921, it has happened.
The California recall, despite its perpetual uncertainties during its
short life, has come full circle. Gov. Gray Davis is out. Action hero Arnold
Schwarzenegger is in.
During his campaign, Schwarzenegger kept most of his details about fixing
California's budget and cleaning up Sacramento behind an enigmatic shroud.
On Tuesday, Californians took a leap of faith.
"In this kind of an accelerated race, people who are charismatic
don't have to give us too many details about their plan," said Gitty
Amini, assistant professor of political science at the University of La
Verne. "There is a danger in that."
However, the time of reckoning is upon Schwarzenegger. Tumultuous times
lie ahead. A looming $8 billion deficit nags California in the coming fiscal
year. This deficit could increase by $4 billion if Schwarzenegger achieves
his first order of business: rescinding the recently tripled car tax.
During his campaign, Schwarzenegger pledged to rid California of this
deficit without raising taxes. As of Wednesday, the Governor-elect was touting
his plan to negotiate with Indian tribes to increase the state's cut in
"We are in a financial crises now, and I want them to participate,"
Schwarzenegger said during a press conference Wednesday.
Also, an independent audit of the state's books will take place before
program cuts are revealed.
Schwarzenegger, who drives and helped make popular the gas-guzzling
Hummer, also articulated interest in promoting clean air and water through
hydrogen fuel cell technology.
Helping undocumented immigrants sparked the governor-elect's interest.
He wants to provide immigrants with temporary work permits, along with providing
undocumented immigrants who came to the United States before August 2003
the opportunity to apply for visas; this is based on a bill introduced by
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz).
In Tuesday's election, Schwarzenegger won the support of the support
of nearly 50 percent of California voters including 25 percent of Democrats,
beating out Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante by more than 15 percentage points.
Schwarzenegger received 48.7 percent of the vote, which translated to
just more than 3.7 million. His closest competitor, Bustamante, received
2.4 million votes, or about 32 percent.
The body-builder-turned-actor-governor-elect may nevertheless be looking
at an abbreviated honeymoon period in Sacramento. He will be battling a
largely Democratic state legislature, much of which is still clutching to
a sense of hostility raised by the recall.
To vote the "Terminator" star into the state's top job Tuesday,
voters made their way to the more than 15,000 polling precincts to decipher
one of 80 versions of the ballot, on which the order of names was shuffled
to prevent any advantage of being listed toward the top.
So what happens now? First, the election must be certified, which
includes an arduous process of vote tabulation that could take around a
Tabulation of votes received by the precincts Tuesday began yesterday.
This is continuation of the official canvass, which started with the certification
of absentee ballots that were received prior to election day. Counties
must work at least six hours a day-excluding weekends and holidays-tabulating
the official canvass until completion.
During this time, officials must count all valid provisional and absentee
Then, after counting all valid write-ins and reproducing any necessary
damaged ballots, officials conduct a hand count of the ballots cast in 1
percent of randomly chosen precincts.
Twenty-nine days after the election, the official canvass must be completed,
and, by the 35th day, counties must submit a report to Secretary of State
As for this election, the Secretary of State's office said it was too
early to determine when the counties will be completing their official canvasses,
but counties generally take right up until the deadline.
"I just don't have an estimate," the Secretary of state's
press office said yesterday.
The Secretary of State then has until Nov. 15 to swear Schwarzenegger
in as the new governor of California.