[Wikipedia-l] Calif recall candidates --

Ray Saintonge saintonge at telus.net
Tue Aug 19 00:56:44 UTC 2003

Richard Grevers wrote:

> On 18 Aug 2003 23:15:00 +0200, Till Westermayer <till at tillwe.de> gave 
> utterance to the following:
>> I'd say there is a difference between the local level ("Canterbury
>> Regional Council", "Indian electoral districts", "Orange County School
>> Board") and the sub-national state level ("England", "States of India",
>> "California"). These difference is especially visible in the
>> significance to the rest of the world.
> Well even the smaller states of India are more populous than most US 
> states. 

I think that there is a "market" for some of this oddball information.

> Excuse my ignorance of the US electoral system, but are there 
> gubnertorial contests happening in some or all of the other states at 
> the same time? If there are, then why should California be singled 
> out, other than for the reason that California tends to be self 
> aggrandizing? And the reason for that might be that it is home to the 
> third-largest film and TV industry in the world and the accompanying 
> media circus?

The media circus only adds flavour of the event.  Each US state has its 
own rules to determine the length of term of office for state officials, 
often even with some logic to the matter.  The current events in 
California are irregular in that it first involves an attempt to recall 
the current governor, Gray Davis, from office in the middle of his term. 
 This way the California process won't be upstaged by any similar events 
in other states.  (I'm sorry but the states of India with the same 
reverance in the mind of the average American, even if there are more 
West Bengalis than Californians.)  
Californians will receive two ballots on October 7.  In the first they 
will be asked if Gray Davis is to keep his job; that matter can be 
decided by a simple majority of votes cast.  If he does keep his job the 
second vote will be moot.  The real fun begins in the very likely 
possibility that Californians shoose to give him the boot.  The winner 
will be the top vote getter in a list of 135 candidates who have bought 
lottery tickets.  In theory the winner could be governor with the 
support of less than 1% of the voters... which then means very much less 
than 1% of Californians.  

The laughter is being shared by citizens of the other states equally 
with those of other countries, and perhaps wryly even with some 
good-humoured Californians.


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