What to Know
- Statewide, 9,137,428 ballots were cast in the California recall election.
- Ventura, Orange, San Bernardino, Riverside and LA Counties all voted in favor of keeping Gov. Gavin Newsom in office.
- Republican candidate Larry Elder was the front runner among voters who wanted to replace Newsom, by a large margin of those voters.
On Tuesday night, California voters definitively chose not to recall Gov. Gavin Newsom, voting "no" in the effort to oust him from office.
Voters were only asked two questions in this special election: whether or not they want to recall Newsom from his position and, if so, who should replace him.
Statewide, 9,137,428 ballots were cast in the recall election, according to the California Secretary of State's office, with 18,185 of 18,185 precincts reporting results.
The statewide results break down to 3,297,145 votes, 36.1% of the total, in favor of recalling Newsom, versus 5,840,283 votes, or 63.9% of the total, who chose to keep Newsom in office.
But how did Southern California vote?
Here's what we know from the current numbers available on Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021.
Live Election Results
Note: For Governor Gavin Newsom to be removed, a majority “yes” vote is needed. If that happens, the candidate with the most votes will succeed him.
Source: California Secretary of State
Los Angeles County
According to the official count from the LA County Voter Registrar/County Clerk's office, LA County voters were even more strongly in favor of keeping Newsom in office than the state as a whole.
A total of 2,263,071 ballots were cast in LA county alone. An overwhelming 1,598,140 of those votes were "no" votes, with 70.85% of voters in the election choosing to keep Newsom in office.
The remaining 657,584 ballots were "yes" votes in favor of recalling Newsom, coming up to 29.15% of the county's total votes in the election.
The top three candidates that received votes on the LA County ballots that voted in favor of recalling Newsom were Republican talk show host Larry Elder, Democratic real estate agent and YouTube creator Kevin Paffrath, and Republican former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer.
Elder received 498,173 votes, or 44.09% of the total recall candidate votes in LA County. Paffrath received 113,027 votes, 10.0% of that total, while Faulconer received 97,250 votes, or 8.61%.
A breakdown of the votes received by all 46 recall candidates can be viewed at the LA County Registrar website.
Of the over 2 million ballots cast in LA County during the recall election, a whopping 1,860,102 ballots, or 82.1%, were vote-by-mail ballots. The other 17.81%, or 402,969 votes, were ballots cast at in-person vote centers.
In Orange County, which has historically elected Republican candidates, 52.59% of voters who cast ballots in the recall election decided to keep Newsom in office.
With a total of 885,145 ballots cast — 49% of the 1,807,081 registered votes — there were 464,164 orange county voters who said "no" when asked if they wanted to recall Newsom. The other 47.41% of Orange County ballots, 418,362 in total, voted "yes."
Elder received 324,556 votes, or 57.63% of the total candidate votes, among voters in Orange County. Paffrath came second with 45,370 votes, or 8.06%, while Faulconer came third at 44,919 votes and 7.98% of the candidate votes.
An even greater percentage of Orange County voters sent in Vote by Mail ballots than in LA County, with 755,298 voters, or 85.3% of the total 885,145 ballots cast in the recall election, arriving by mail. The other 129,847 ballots were cast in Orange County vote centers.
Ventura County saw 46.52% of its total population of 509,797 registered voters come out to vote for the recall election, with 237,167 ballots cast, according to the Ventura County registrar.
Of those, 59.54% were "no" votes, making for a total 140,083 registered voters who wanted to keep Newsom in office. Those voters made up the majority of the county.
The other 40.46%, or 95,203 ballots, were in favor of ousting the governor.
Elder was once again the frontrunner out of the large pool of recall candidates, with 74,654 votes — or 54.80% — of the 136,238 people who selected a replacement if Newsom were recalled. Faulconer came second on the list of replacement candidates, with 8.06% or 10,963 votes, while Paffrath was third for Ventura County, at 10,823 or 7.94%.
San Bernardino County
San Bernardino County has 1,133,110 registered voters, according to the county registrar. Of those voters, 33.85% (383,504 people) cast their ballots in the recall election.
A majority 52.03% of the county residents who voted in the election, or 198,709 people, voted "no" when asked if they wanted to recall Newsom. The other 47.97%, totaling 183,168 voters, decided to oust the governor.
Among San Bernardino voters who chose a replacement for Newsom, Elder was once again the most popular candidate with 59.76% of the votes and 141,688 ballots. He was followed by Faulconer, who had 5.60% of the votes and 13,274 ballots. Paffrath, who had 5.38% of the votes and 12,749 ballots, came in third.
In Riverside County, 502,859 of 1,293,611 registered voters cast their ballots in the California recall election. Only 501,376 votes were listed on the Riverside County voter registrar's website as deciding either "yes" or "no," as of Wednesday morning.
Of the registered voters who answered that question, 52.4%, or 262,850 people, were in favor of keeping Newsom in office. Conversely, 238,526 people, or 47.6% of those voters, wanted a new governor.
In total, 313,812 Riverside voters chose a replacement candidate for governor. Among those individuals, Elder was, once again, the most popular option at 182,126 ballots and 58% of the votes in his favor. Faulconer came in second place for replacement candidates at 20,105 ballots and 6.4% of the votes, while Praffath came in third at 19,837 ballots and 6.3% of the votes.
Since vote-by-mail ballots postmarked by Sept. 14 must be counted, results will continue to roll in for weeks across all five SoCal counties, at which point the election will be certified.