A Palm Springs woman running for Congress is at least the second Republican to launch a potential recall drive against Gov. Gavin Newsom.
On Friday, author and speaker Erin Cruz submitted a “notice of intent” to recall with 90-plus signatures, officials said. In so doing, she outraced a similar effort by La Jolla physician James Veltmeyer — twice a candidate for Congress.
Cruz, 42, ran in the June 2018 primary for U.S. Senate, taking sixth place in a race that ultimately saw incumbent Dianne Feinstein turn back fellow Democrat Kevin de León. Cruz received 267,494 votes — 4% of those cast.
Between 2004 and 2008, she worked at UC San Diego as a secretary and academic personnel officer, according to her LinkedIn profile.
She didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment, but her notice echoes the reasons behind the Veltmeyer effort.
Grounds for recall, Cruz says, include “over a decade of proven mismanagement of policies, public monies and resources, and lack of infrastructure (that) have led to deterioration of California communities, poor schools, crumbling infrastructure, outrageous rise of costs from gas to utilities, mass housing crisis, frightening increase in homelessness and insurmountable debt.”
The notice also cites supposed Newsom efforts to push “Medicare for All … and laws protecting and helping illegal aliens.”
She says Newsom is putting Californians and U.S. citizens, “including veterans,” last.
On Monday, the Veltmeyer campaign said it had served Newsom with a recall notice.
Late Tuesday afternoon, a spokesman for Secretary of State Alex Padilla says Veltmeyer filed a notice via email. It included 100 “proponent” signatures, including many from San Diego County.
Andrew Russo of Hollister-based Paramount Communications is helping Veltmeyer’s Californians to Recall Gavin Newsom group. He said Tuesday that his group is not associated or affiliated with Erin Cruz.
Does the competing Cruz effort complicate his?
“Not at all,” Russo said via email. “During the Gray Davis recall, there were several groups working on it. Every group can bring its strengths to the table.”
According to the Secretary of State’s Office, Newsom has a deadline to answer the Cruz-backed “notice of intent.”
“We are still reviewing the Notice of Intent and awaiting for signature verification from county elections officials,” said Sam Mahood, Padilla’s press secretary. “Friday is the deadline for the governor to submit an ‘answer’ in response to this recall, should he wish to do so.”
The governor’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on the Cruz recall effort.
If a recall petition is authorized, advocates would need nearly 1.5 million signatures to force a recall election like the one that led to Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger succeeding Democrat Davis in 2003.
According to an official list of California recall attempts, Cruz in mid-March failed to qualify for ballot recalls against Newsom, Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis, Attorney General Xavier Becerra, Secretary of State Padilla, state Treasurer Fiona Ma, Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara and state Controller Betty Yee.
According to her website profile, Cruz is a Tea Party Republican and “Constitutional Conservative with the ability to transcend traditional party lines.”
She is the author of “Revolution America, Communication Toolbox for the Modern Conservative American Woman,” listed on Amazon.com for $8.83 (paperback).
Updated at 6 p.m. Aug. 6, 2019
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