Unofficial results of the election were released on the evening of Sept. 14, leading to Gov. Gavin Newsom claiming an early victory and Elder addressing a crowd of supporters in Costa Mesa.
“We may have lost the battle, but we are going to win the war,” Elder said.
Elder proceeded to suggest his efforts to win the recall were over before the official election results were released. Newsom addressed Californians on Twitter shortly before 9:00 p.m. while ballots were still being counted.
“’No’ is not the only thing that was expressed tonight,” Newsom said in a Sept. 14 speech. “I’m humble and grateful for the millions and millions of Californians that exercise their fundamental right to vote and express themselves so overwhelmingly by rejecting the division, by rejecting the cynicism, by rejecting so much of the negativity that has defined our politics.”
Crystal Myers-Barber, a resident of Costa Mesa told The Epoch Times the media was calling the election before the counting process was complete.
“I remember back in 2018, I was watching the elections, and AP news called it, and people were still standing in line,” Myers Barber said.
Myers Barber said she encountered Orange County residents at polling sites who were told their vote had already been cast.
“I’ve met people today who were voting at our precinct, and one lady saw that she already voted,” she said.
The Epoch Times reached out to the Orange County Registrar’s Office on Sept. 14 regarding a similar situation in Newport Beach and was told by the office they would respond at a later time.
Juan Rivera, a 21-year-old resident of San Martin was present at the Costa Mesa event after campaigning in favor of the recall. He hoped the recall would bring about change, citing a deep division among Californians.
“I’ve spoken to a lot of Latinos that are Democrat that says they are tired of being used as a political pawn … and they want change,” he said. “People are tired of the high prices. Taxes are going up and homelessness in every single community. … A lot of people are struggling right now, and Gavin Newsom gave stimulus checks, but he did not bother giving it to people that are in communities that actually need the money.”
“I would go to mostly the areas that were Democrat and I knew that they were. I would explain to them, I’m not urging you to vote ‘yes,’ but please consider doing your proper research. And when people actually did the research, they knew that this was not a Republican recall.”
Israel Sandez, a former Democrat, told The Epoch Times the unofficial election results were “rough,” but there is a need for change within the state.
“I was once a Democrat, I was raised a Democrat, and I felt that the times are changing, and the Democratic Party is becoming so divisive,” he said. “When I saw someone like Larry Elder as a uniter, not merely just as a person of color, but someone who understands from the background. I’m Latino, but I identify with someone that understands my socio-economic background. When he’s running for office, he’s not a divider, he is a unifier.”
Sandez began advocating for the recall after becoming dissatisfied with Newsom’s “failed policies.”
“The election so far, it’s been a rough campaign. California has been increasingly Democratic. Elections are unpredictable. The people who did the recall, to sign the petition—we put it on the ballot, we made our voices heard. We were dissatisfied with what Gavin Newsom was doing to our state.”