ORLANDO, Florida — Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) is “absolutely” in favor of recalling California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), he told Breitbart News in an interview during the Conservative Political Action Conference.
Issa, one of 11 Republicans who won House seats in the deeply blue state in November, spoke on the issue as signatures have been accumulating to recall the governor, asserting Newsom’s slipping approval rating is indicative of his job performance.
“The governor has about a 44 percent approval rating and dropping for a reason,” Issa said as he railed against Newsom’s handling of coronavirus. “Our lights are going out in California, and he’s doing nothing about it. He locked down the state and isn’t distributing vaccines effectively, and yet we have some of the highest side effects. If you’re right here in Florida, your chances of getting COVID-19 are the same or less while the state is wide open comparatively and while the state’s economy is thriving while California — we’ve lost a third of our restaurants to closure.”
California, the country’s most populated state, hovers around the middle in coronavirus case rates by state, according to Statista. However, Newsom has imposed relatively strict mandates related to the virus, including a statewide mask mandate and two statewide lockdowns.
As a New York Times article titled “Hurt by Lockdowns, California’s Small Businesses Push to Recall Governor” recently observed, the “stop-start-stop” of the lockdowns has “created a groundswell of anger toward Mr. Newsom, a Democrat in the third year of his first term, that is increasingly fueling a movement to recall him from office in one of the bluest of blue states.”
Florida has a lower coronavirus case rate than California, and Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) has, by contrast, rejected mask mandates and lockdowns. DeSantis said at the end of last year that Florida would have “no lockdowns, no fines, no school closures. No one’s losing their job because of a government dictate. Nobody’s losing their livelihood or their business,” he said, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
Leaders of the recall campaign against Newsom announced Sunday they had gathered nearly two million signatures, which is well over the 1.5 million needed to force a recall vote.
In addition to the Newsom recall, Issa commented on the success California Republicans saw in their 2020 House races, in which three seats flipped to the GOP, and Rep. Mike Garcia (R-CA) also kept his seat in November after handily defeating Democrat Christy Smith in a runoff election last May to fill former Rep. Katie Hill’s (D-CA) seat.
Issa described it as “the most Democratic seat held by a Republican” and said, “It was an incredible rebuke of the Democratic Party.” Garcia’s win marked the first time a Republican had flipped a House seat in the Golden State in more than two decades.
Write to Ashley Oliver at [email protected].