tv The California Recall Special Election Coverage CNN September 14, 2021 9:00pm-10:00pm PDT
president, key democratic senators go out there. >> liz warren, barack obama did a commercial. >> exactly. and what they're trying to do is frankly take advantage of the fact that the former president isn't going away. just the opposite. he is commenting. he doesn't have his twitter feed, but he has his e-mail and he is doing everything he can to stay involved and to keep his people within the republican party front and center. and the more he's out there, the more democrats are trying to take advantage to use him as a foil. >> no, i think that's right. and the question is what will republicans do about it, right? they've got larry elder here who did horribly. everybody thought he would going into this. and there are other candidates who will be on the ballot in these coming months and years and possibly in 2024 trump himself on the ballot again. so if you're republicans, you're nervous about that. but you also know that trump has
a tremendous hold on the republican party. he has made them believe utter lies about 2020, and he just has a strong emotional connection to those voters and republicans who are running across the ballot know that. so this is i think a real kind of moment for republicans to take away what does this mean for their relationship to trumpism. and in some ways i think they've already figured that out. >> and again, i think the critical piece of this is the margin that we're seeing here for newsom. because i think we knew going into the night it was most likely that this was going to be the outcome, but we didn't know it was going to be this significant. and i think the question too, and i'm hearing -- i'm getting e-mails from both republicans and democrats. republicans frankly expecting this, a lot of them. but i've had some democrats get in touch to say that while they acknowledge there are a lot of challenges for national democrats, whether they're related to inflation, the economy, getting the agenda through congress, they feel pretty good about tonight
because republicans, again, are giving them so much to work with. >> and in fact, it was just a few days ago that larry elder said that joe biden had won in a fair election and then he took it back. he had to take it back because he too is afraid of the base. david chalian, we heard a very national speech just now from gavin newsom. tell us what you're picking up in the exit polls and more. >> well, as you noted in his speech, that one-two punch you guys were talking about is now the democratic playbook going forward, right? lean into science. lean into vaccine mandates. lean into management of the coronavirus. and at the same time trumpify the republican party as much as possible, which of course republican voters help you do because right now trump really is the life force inside the gop. those two things together, you heard it all throughout his speech. that wasn't just california. that was nationally. but looking inside these numbers, i will also say there
are some to-do items. even with this huge newsom victory there are some to-do items here for the democratic party. especially in less blue places. you see real concern among voters when it comes to the economy and to the cost of living in your community. inflation as casey was just saying. that's real. and every politician on the ballot in 2022 is going to need to deal with that, acknowledge that, and make sure they don't ignore it. that's one. and the other thing i would just note. we see some of the demographic trends, jake, that he with saw in 2020 still very much at play in this trump, post-trump era, which is that white college-educated voters are going more and more for democrats. we see this in the suburbs throughout the country. this is sort of the definitional thing of american politics at the moment. and we see that here for newsom as well. but as we also saw in 2020, trump made some inroads among latinos, among non-white voters overall but among latinos and
specifically latino men. and we see that here too as a warning sign or a to-do item for democrats to work on because gavin newsom had won latino men three years ago in his governor's race by 22 points. that's now down to six points in the exit poll. so it is something to be aware of, especially when you're looking at that battle for control of the house and where that vote may play so critically in some key house races. so there are items here to pay attention to, even in a big democratic victory for democrats moving forward as well. >> very interesting. david chalian, thank you so much. anderson? >> yeah, jake, i want to talk to jeff zeleny after hearing from david chalian about how this may impact the midterms. i'm wondering what you've been hearing. >> anderson, talking to a variety of democrats as we have been for the last several minutes and all evening from the white house to the house and senate committees, there certainly is a sense of confidence and quite frankly a sense of relief. had this gone the other way, had it even been a narrow race, it would have simply been
disastrous. but this landslide win is probably without question the biggest boost of confidence politically speaking for the biden administration. and actually as president biden was coming back to the white house after of course spending yesterday out in california and today in colorado, i actually asked him what lessons he can draw from this. and he said, well, it's too early, of course, the race hasn't been called -- hasn't been called in. but on vaccines he said he can draw lessons. and that is what democrats are going to do. they do believe that there is now more of a sense for vaccine mandates. now, the president himself said not among everyone. there's going to be a small percentage that does not accept them. but that is what this is going to essentially offer a road map for democrats going forward, to be much more serious about covid-19 on the mandates for mask wearing and for vaccines. but you know, we should also point out that history is never kind to a president's party.
so in closing here, anderson, one top democratic official i spoke to just a couple seconds ago, he said it's more of a warning sign for them than a positive message for us. but we will certainly take this tonight. so that of course the takeaway. bad news for republicans. certainly the era of trumpism was rejected tonight, anderson. >> jeff zeleny, thanks. let's go to our panel. what do you think is the message for republicans? >> the message is trumpism is not the future if you want to win. it's a losing formula. it's on display here in california -- >> there's not a lot of republicans, though, who seemed to believe that in d.c. >> there aren't -- well, the problem is not enough republican voters believe it. so hopefully there are still lessons taken away from this. hopefully they see that perpetuating the big lie of rigged elections is absurd on a night like tonight when the margin's going to be in the millions. there's no type of fraud going on here. we have to keep -- from my perspective as a republican that wants to move beyond trump we're going to have to keep
confronting this, battling it and knocking it down. it's going to probably take more time than we want. but it is a losing, losing, losing formula. >> but donald trump is not going anywhere. people i talk to, is a couple of republicans this past week, believe he's more like ly in fat to run again for vengeance now than he was even at the beginning of the summer. and you look at somebody like mitch mcconnell who is fighting for a majority and donald trump is endorsing people that mitch mcconnell doesn't want or doesn't think can win or doesn't think can help the republican party and believes will happen in the future what happened in georgia during the previous election. so what do republicans do about that? >> so trump fumbles -- contributes to fumbling the midterms. midterms should accrue to the republicans for sure. if there's any fumble there at all, trump then gets i think -- he gets taken on if he wants to run for that nomination again. if people like chris christie who i think may be able to do it
are really starting to lay down those markers. look, it's degrading i think by the day, the trump effect. but of course it hasn't gone away. but nights like tonight hopefully continue to degrade it. for the sake of the country, absolutely. but as a republican hopefully it degrades it so we can get back to opportunities to advance forward and win and broaden our coalition of voters in this country. >> yeah. you know, the dynamic, though, is the one that you can't win unless you get nominated and republicans in most places can't get nominated if they're seen as anti-trump. >> that's right. >> and that is the fundamental problem that they face. jeff is right. i agreed with the comment of the last democrat he mentioned. this was more a warning sign for republicans than necessarily, you know, a sign of great encouragement for democrats. there are these historical barriers and it's a redistricting year in which republicans are going to benefit from redistricting. democrats really start behind in
the race for the house. and so much is reliant on what happens, what course this virus takes, what course the economy takes. you know, the president may score some big victories this fall that could help him. but the real lesson here is don't make it a referendum on the president. don't play defense. you've got to play offense. and trump gives them the opportunity to play offense. >> i think one thing to say is i'm proud of gavin newsom. like this is his night. he had to -- he had a tough hand. he was going down. he was in a toilet starting to swirl and he figured out a way to get out of that situation. and i thought the guy you saw tonight was a guy you could respect. this is a guy who's had biblical level tragedies befall that state, wildfires, droughts, a plague, pandemic, a recall election. and he was able to stand there
and talk about not just himself, talk about the state, talk about the issues, talk about his kids, and walk away a winner tonight. >> yeah. >> that's tough to pull off. and when you see somebody pull something like that off on the national stage i think you've got to give him his -- >> let me just say they also ran a great campaign. >> they did. >> and i admire the campaign they ran. it was smart. as i said, they grabbed the definition of the race. they defined what the stakes were about. and they made the pandemic and trumpism and elder the focus of that race. and that's why they -- >> tough and smart. >> -- got this big victory. very smart and very well done. >> they were very agile at the beginning when they said just vote no, let's get rid of the rest of the democrats, let's make this a simple proposition here. just vote no. and then covid was obviously a problem for him at one point. but then when the delta variant came and people started feeling unsafe, they understood that the mandates might be important.
>> right. >> and then when elder rose to the top of the pack that sort of -- >> an opponent of mandates, an opponent of requirements. and in that whole mix everybody is watching the news from florida, the news from texas, and asks themselves -- you know, 2/3 of the voters today according to this exit poll either said that the measures that newsom has implemented were about right or not strict enough. >> right. >> well, those not strict enough people did not vote for recall. >> so they could nationalize the election. >> elder's the key to this. elder was the key to this. because early on in the campaign the newsom team tried to run against trump and trumpism. first ad showed scenes of the storming of the capitol on january 6th. and they tried to equate the recall to the storming of the capitol. and it didn't work. it wasn't believable. so this thing was in a vacuum and it was close. gavin newsom, yes/no. and then along came larry elder. so i agree, they have executed
an excellent campaign from the point elder came into the race. he almost didn't make the ballot. he wasn't going to be let on. and the judge put him on the ballot. case of wine to that judge from the neuwsom campaign. >> more tonight. don lemon picks up our coverage after a quick break. think of what peanuts have given humanity! fuel for vast migrations! sustenance for mountaineering expeditions and long journeys across the world! but most importantly? they give us something to eat when we drink beer. planters. a nut above. (brother) hi sis! (sister) you're late! (brother) fashionably late. (sister) we can not be late. (brother) there's a road right there. (brother) that's a cat. wait, just hold madi's headpiece. (sister) no. seriously? (brother) his name is whiskers. (bride) what happened to you? whose cat is that? (brother) it's a long story. (sister) oh my gosh. (farmer) whiskers! there you are!
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all right, everybody, time now for the big show in the big studio. i'm don lemon. this is cnn's continuing coverage of the california recall election. this is our breaking news right now. cnn is projecting that democratic governor gavin newsom will handily defeat the recall and he's going to remain in office. so speaking just moments ago, newsom saying that he is humbled and he is grateful but also saying there's more that unites voters than divides them and thanking voters for turning that recall back. so that is our breaking news right now. let's get the big picture now. we want to go over to the magic wall. cnn's phil mattingly here. phil, good evening to you. so we're over at the magic wall. is it magic or -- there it is. it magically appears. >> did you plan that? >> i did. it needed me to be over here. >> this is what it looks like? >> this is what it looks like.
you've seen the blue fill in. you've seen the red fill in. we've been through this drill many times. here's where things stand right now. we've obviously called this race. the no vote right now at 2.77 million more than the yes vote. remember, this ballot had two questions. you vote no on the recall, you're done. you vote yes, then you have 46 options to replace gavin newsom. clearly gavin newsom and the no vote are winning handily. here's why. i think it's important to dig into these results here. keep in mientd baseline. democrats have an almost 2-1 advantage in registration. so for republicans to have any shot whatsoever they needed independents to break their way, major democratic apathy, and you needed republicans to surge. i want to pick out three counties in particular just to start things off. you start with the biggest county in the state-s, los angeles county. gavin neuse wm a no vote 73% to a 26%. this was a blowout. however, this was an area they hoped there could be? republican votes or at least some apathy on the democratic side. look at this percentage right here. go back to 2020. where was joe biden at this point? gavin newsom right now doing
better percentagewise than where joe biden did -- what joe biden did back in 2020. that is obviously a very positive sign. joe biden won the state by 30 points. basically, the yes vote needed to blow away where joe biden was in terms of percentages. >> let's see tonight again. where we are. you said -- >> oh. right now 73% to 26%. >> a little bit better. >> no democratic apathy. a bigger spread. now, keep in mind they counted the mail vote first. mail vote trends democratic. these numbers will probably start to drop a little bit. but the reason it's as big as it is right now is because there's no democratic apathy at least that we've seen so far. track down the to the next county over, orange county. this used to be the republican base in the state. that has started to shift over the course of the last several cycles. but in 2020 even though joe biden won this county there were two republican house members who won seats around this county. where's the no vote right now? 57.9% to 42.1%. where was joe biden back in 2020? 53% to 44%. so it gives you a sense right now the margins are just well in
favor of where gavin newsom wanted to be. track down to one more. i think this is important. second biggest county in the state. san diego county. obviously home of san diego. the no vote 60.6%. yes vote 39.4%. why does this matter? again, inside this county was a republican-won district back in 2020. what did joe biden do back in 2020? pretty much matching it up. if you match up in a state that democrats won by 30 points one year ago, you're dead. they're matching up or doing worse almost across the board in all of the major blue most populous areas. that right now is why gavin newsom is up by 2.77 million votes. >> so when i asked phil before the show, what does california look like, he goes it looks like an eye, whatever. what it looks like is basically this is what was blue during 2020 is blue. what was red during 2020 is red. >> look at the counties joe biden won. the counties joe biden won in 2020. every single one of them except for one is still blue. and if you want to dig in on
that county and see would this have made a difference, no. butte county. this is the 27th largest county in the state and it's very, very narrow. everything that you saw in 2020 gavin newsom has replicated or done about thor than. the apathy -- >> phil. >> yes, harry. >> here comes harry. harry enten is here. >> what a surprise it turns out that the blue state is blue. and it turns out that the guy who had a 55% approval rating in the exit polls ends up turning back the recall. there's just like nothing really shocking to me in this. and the other thing i'll point out, though, which isn't shocking to me, is the polls all along, especially in the final week, had newsom overwhelmingly turn back the recall. i am so sick and tired of hearing folks bash the polls over and over and over again when there was a 15-point lead for no over yes in the recall and so far the results tonight if anything illustrate that the polls might have underestimated newsom's margin. >> why didn't you call it earlier, harry? we've been talking about this all week. >> don, you and i had a conversation on the phone last
flight. you called me up wondering about this race and i said basically that i might not have a job tomorrow if somehow yes was able to win in this race. and so far i'm still sitting in this chair. >> harry-u might have done that in a private phone call with don. i did not have that call. however, you harry did not say that publicly. you were hedging consistently throughout. and so i think -- >> what? >> you constantly hedged. so there was always a pathway even if it was small. this is making very clear there was no pathway. >> there's no pathway anymore. >> harry, let me tell you this. we've been saying the polls are off and you never know, 2016 or what have you. but that was the electoral college. this isn't electoral college. this is what we said, the major point was this is the popular vote. democrats outnumber republicans in california, what, 2-1, right? so that showed up in what happened tonight. you were thinking that's going to show up or happen the entire time. >> that's exactly right. and if you look back at the polls back in 2020, what did you find? you found that the final polls had joe biden winning the state of california by 29.2 points. what did he win by?
i believe it was 29.2, if my memory is correct, and usually it's pretty gosh darn good. in california the polls right again. if anything, it underestimated the no margin which is actually what happened in 2018 br the polls underestimated newsom's margin. so -- >> mr. ron brownstein is joining us from california. that was our conversation last night. how long have you and i been talking about this? >> we've been talking about it for a while. look there, was always only one question in this recall, given the inherent advantages the democrats have in the state, and that was whether democratic voters would sleepwalk through the vote. and that was the threat that was raised by that berkeley poll at the end of july that showed republicans were far more engaged in the race and as a result among likely voters as opposed to all voters it appeared close at that moment. what happened after that is significant because the core problem, we talked about this last night, the core problem the president's party faces in midterm elections is their voters are usually less motivated to turn out than the voters that are out of the white
house. and that is the problem that newsom faced. well, how did he solve that? he obviously solved it in a big way. he solved it by focusing not so much on what he has done but on what republicans might do if given power. and he centered that question on one very specific issue. the pandemic. vaccine mandates. mask mandates. and what you saw in this result in the exit poll was that given t that choice voters overwhelmingly wanted to stay the course on tougher measures. in the exit poll the voters who said that newsom's policies were too strict on the recall vo voted -- but they were only 1/3 of the vote. that was the same share of the vote that trump won in 2020. the remainder of the state, 62 -- roughly 62%, said either his policies were about right or not strict enough. and they gave him roughly 85% of
their vote. >> ron -- >> so for democrats there's a lesson here that there may be the ability to mobilize their voters. yes, california is unusually favorable to rain. but pointing out the contrast on how to respond to covid, tying republicans not only to trump but to florida and texas, cl clearly was a big wake-up call for democrats in california and i think some democrats are going to see it as a wake-up call -- >> ron, let me ask you this. this is just me. i'm not a political analyst. people just weren't dialed in. when there was so much consternation about oh my gosh, gavin newsom, you better look out, things are tighter, how much was people were just not dialed in at the moment, the polling was too early, they weren't ready to -- hadn't figured it out? >> just a quick -- my quick thought. among registered voters as harry knows, among registered voters he was always way ahead. the only time the race was close in the polls was when people did likely voter screens and found fewer democrats than republicans paying attention. >> one thing i would point out,
ron, which to me was very interesting, was as soon as elder entered the race what essentially you saw was as elder's vote started building in that second round that obviously never skam into play we saw at the same point the no vote also gain's steam. and it seemed to me that as soon as elder entered you gave newsom this opportunity to say look, it's p just a referendum on me, it's this choice. and when it becomes a choice between two candidates all of a sudden a state like california, the deep blue state that it is, i think that very much benefited gavin newsom. i think the question in my mind is whether you can really replicate that throughout the rest of the nation. perhaps so. perhaps maybe the coronavirus and the mandates might be able to be something that you could, say, use in other states. but i am yet convinced because obviously this is just one contest. >> yeah. right. absolutely. >> hey, ron, i want to ask you, you talked about joe biden and democrats. you believe that this was awakeup call -- i went to grab my phone to look at some of the
things we were texting. this is a wake-up call for democrats. what joe biden did with the mandates, you think it helped him. but also they saw the polling and what was happening with gavin newsom out in california and they possibly realized that they needed to be stronger with the mandates for masks and for vaccines as well. so this is a message or something that maybe democrats should be repeating around the country that they've learned from california. >> i agree with harry that you can't replicate the exact same policies in every state, obviously there's a different baseline but in general one of the clear messages of this is that everywhere democrats can lean into a tougher response to the virus than republicans are offering in whatever state. like in texas you might not argue for a statewide mandate. you would certainly argue against a statewide prohibition on local governments requiring vaccinations or masks. i think what happened here was that as the year began the
republicans got this on the ballot because of a backlash in the most conservative parts of the state to the stringency of what newsom was punctuated by the hip ok i are cy of him appearing at french laundry. as the year went on, particularly as the delta variant surged and newsom responded with some of the most aggressive policies in the country, mask manned yairts in the schools, vaccine mandates for government employees and health workers he was able to make that the central point of distinction in the race. when elder got in the race as harry said it gave him a foil. but you know, there were a lot of issues where elder is to the right of the state that newsom could have chosen to focus on. he chose to focus on the mandates and kind of following science and not allowing california to go down the path of texas and florida. and i think if nothing else that certainly energized democrats. also from the exits it seemed to work with independent voters. and in that sense i think it is reassuring to the president that
they are kind of on strong political ground in emphasizing -- republicans now, whether it's kevin mccarthy, ron desantis, greg abbott, their messaging is all about, quote, the rights and the choices of the 1/4 of americans who are unvaccinated. and i think what california showed is that there is a silent majority of the vaccinated who are ready for tougher steps to get those overall numbers -- >> you keep answering every question i have for you, you keep answering it before i can even ask it. this is a battle between the vaccinated and the unvaccinated. we've got a lot to talk about in the hours ahead here on cnn. stand by. this is what california looks like. phil mattingly is here at the wall. everything that was blue in 2020 is blue now. everything that's red in 2020 is red now. pretty much. >> for the most part. >> pretty much. for the most part. a lot to talk about. cnn is projecting that gavin newsom defeating an attempt to remove him from office. we're going to take a very quick break. more of cnn's continuing coverage of the california recall election on the other side of this. don't go anywhere.
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they have defeated trump, but trumpism is not dead in this country. the big lie. the january 6th insurrection. all the voting suppression efforts that are happening all across this country. what's happening with the assault on fundamental rights, constitutionally protected rights of women and girls. it's a remarkable moment in our nation's history. >> welcome back, everyone. this is our breaking news. cnn is projecting that california governor gavin newsom will defeat or has defeated the recall and the attempt to remove him from office. i want to get some expert analysis -- well, i don't know expert in bakari but we'll bring bakari in anyway. bakari sellers, alice stewart, mark preston and laura baron lopez in this very overcaffeinated room tonight. spoking for myself. could have nii and -- >> like three cups of coffee.
>> -- and soda back here. good to see all of you back in studio. i will ask you as the conservative here, gavin newsom said trumpism is not dead. do you agree with him? >> i agree with him. trumpism is alive and well, and rumors of the death of trumpism are greatly exaggerated. the problem is trumpism really just works for trump. and to some degree trumpism will work in a state like arkansas or a very red state. but to think you can do that in a state like california, it's absurd. if anyone heard harry like we all did, california is blue. it has been blue. it is blue. and will continue to be blue for quite some time. and you cannot run a ruby red campaign in a blue state. and look, we all know this started out as a referendum on the governor but it became a binary choice between he and larry elder. and the problem is the elder campaign didn't read the room, didn't read the state, and didn't realize you cannot run to the right of donald trump in a state like california.
and it came back and bit him in the butt. and it bit republicans in the butt. and i know that that's something, it's a lesson to be learned, but the key is trump might help in a republican primary in california but it's certainly not when you're face to face with a very democratic governor. >> why don't you say what you really feel next time? bit them in the butt. you like that political analysis. do you think elder was the problem here? if someone else would have a better chance -- look, we know he's a flame thrower. he's an internet troll. he's, you know, a talk show radio host. >> provocateur. >> provocateur. was he the -- >> he certainly wasn't the candidate. i think the biggest problem was that republicans weren't able to coalesce behind a more centrist republican, something who would talk just about business and not about abortion. someone to talk about jobs and how we're going to get people back to work but there may be mandates -- >> like governor arnold schwarzenegger, or candidate schwarzenegger.
>> that was a race i think we were all very -- we were shocked by. i mean, when he decided to run, when he won, i think there was shock. however, he proved to be a pretty decent -- >> but he was likeable. he wasn't a provocateur. there was no donald trump then. >> i'm sure that most people in california didn't even know who larry elder was. and there was, 20-plus people on the ballot anyway. >> what do you think, trumpism is not dead? does it work -- i don't even know if you can say it because california is blue. blue, blue, blue. does trumpism work when trump isn't on the ballot, laura? >> i think that to alice's point it can work in some places when trump isn't on the ballot. it can work in certain congressional districts. it can work in certain senate races, in more centrist or redder states. in a state like california no. but it also showed that to mark point that there is no moderation right now in the republican party when it comes to distancing from trump or trying to go more toward the
middle. that even in a state like california the fact they couldn't find some other candidate or coalesce around another candidate, that trump went full in for elder, that also before the election results even came in they started to go with the big lie again saying that the election was rigged and that elder was saying that if he loses that this means it wasn't a legitimate election, it portends for future elections down the road which is this is going to become the norm now where they constantly say that every election is stolen falsely. >> she said there was no moderation, bakari, but have they just hitched their wagon to him and they don't know what to do? >> so the answer is yes. this is donald trump's party. it's going to be donald trump's party. there's no question about that. but i'm hesitant about taking these -- i know we want to jump on tv and take these themes away and what democrats should do and the messaging for democrats, just a month ago people were telling me that eric adams when he won the democratic primary in new york, was the future of the democratic party. now people are saying that the
message we should take out of california is this and that. the fact is, i mean, i could have beat larry elder tonight. like that is not a difficult task in california. democrats -- >> so humble. >> that was an ounce of humility. a dash. >> i think he could have beat governor newsom tonight as well. >> i mean, but the fact is shawn clegg, ace smith, juan rodriguez were able to turn this election on their head and they were able to make this a referendum not on their candidate gavin newsom but a referendum on larry elder. and the problem the republican party has is that they have a long list of todd akins and is it -- catherine o'donnell, one that -- i'm not a witch. >> christine. >> christine o'donnell. they have these -- >> nice memory there. >> thank you so much. they have a long list of these type of candidates. they include larry elder. they include herschel walker. the list is long. and that is what you get with donald trump. and republicans have to realize one thing. trumpism works for donald trump. when donald trump is not on the
ballot, he drags down everybody else around him. and you can't swap in someone like larry elder and say we're going to be successful. gavin newsom if he would have run against a mitt romney type of republican was in trouble. there's no question about it. gavin newsom running against larry elder that they're trying to pass off as something substantive -- >> but how did that happen? >> because it's a sprint to crazy. with all due respect to my republicans -- and i'm from south carolina. i have a lot of good republican friends. more of them are like alice than anything else. but the republican party nowadays is a sprint to crazy. >> but the reality is this started off as a recall election to call attention and to hold the governor accountable for his failures with covid and the economy and how he handled the situation -- >> and he went to do his laundry at the french laundry -- >> do his laundry at the french laundry. >> no, he went to eat at the french laundry. >> whatever. >> but the fact is republicans wanted to get in. and it wasn't the california
republican party or the rnc that anointed larry elder. he got in and he ran and he became -- he became the top of the ticket. but there are some takeaways here and we saw this in 2020, we saw this in the race in georgia for the senate -- >> can you hold it on the other side of this break because i want to get this in. because there's someone i want to bring into the conversation i think is very important and can help us with that. so stand by, al sice and everyby here. i'm going to speak with california's secretary of state shirley webber after accusations of fraud by republicans. we'll talk about that and other topics when we come right back. don't go anywhere.
look at that gorgeous shot of los angeles. the l.a. skyline. and this gorgeous shot of our studio. we're back in studio. we're back, baby! >> i've never seen traffic move so freely. >> not a lot of traffic in l.a. at this hour. breaking news, cnn's projecting that california's democratic governor gavin newsom easily surviving the recall re-election -- recall election i should say, defeating the attempt to remove him from office. so as promised on the other side of the break i want to bring in shirley weber, california's secretary of state, who is a democrat, and we appreciate her joining us at this late hour. though it's not that late in california but she's been going all day and it's been very busy. so thank you very much for joining us, madam secretary. start with this first question. >> thank you -- >> both larry elder and donald trump have claimed without any evidence that the election is rigged and that it can't be trusted. what is your message to them and to california voters tonight?
>> well, i think the california voters demonstrated their faith in hopefully our democracy and voting in california itself. we've worked very hard to secure our elections. there's no evidence of fraud or mishandling of issues. and as secretary of state we've been very evenhanded in how we've handled every issue. even i was sued by the governor as well as by others because of some of the decisions we made that were fair and just and needed to be made in terms of ensuring that the election was fair. so i think california, as we look at what the results may be, we don't know yet completely but we know how it's trending, really is a statement that they believe in the process that we have, that they believe they could vote honestly and openly and express themselves. and so i'd like to say to those who continue to challenge this issue of fairness and justness and so on and so on, i always say to them where's the evidence? we are willing to accept the evidence as it is. not just simply open and empty allegations of fraud and deception. those things are easy to say.
but bev yet to get the information. we have yet to get the evidence there's been fraud and deception. we welcome comments about our election process. we believe we're in the process of always improving what we do. but we don't chase false allegations because that's a waste of our time as we continue to build the confidence of californians and begin to really strengthen our democracy in this country. >> well, a lot of election officials and secretaries of state have been tested throughout the past year or so in this country with these false allegations of election fraud. as a top official in the state in charge of election integrity, i know there are so many steps involved to ensure the security of the vote. there are transaction logs that monitor the tabulation process. there's a manual tally of ballots. ballot images are posted online to ensure transparency. sheriff's deputies are assigned to escort ballots from each of the polling locations. so again, all this -- all these claims of rigging, are they more
about making an excuse for losing than anything else? >> i think it's not only making an excuse for losing but it also is a way in which you can energize people against others and divide this nation at a time when we so greatly need to be together. and it's a way in which people who feel that there's something going on when there's no evidence of that, basically to organize them and keep them organized. and they're a small base. but nonetheless, they are persistent and consistent about what they believe in and someone is feeding it. you know, we have enjoyed in this democracy the honor and dignity of former elected officials that even though we disagreed with them on political issues they believed in this country, they believed in the vote and they believe in keeping this democracy together. we are in an unusual time where people really want to divide us and think that that makes them important and great because they can. and i am determined as the secretary of state in this state, the largest state in the
union, to make sure we continue to educate our children, we continue to push the issue of democracy, we continue to build on the fact that it is very unique to have a country where every vote counts and my vote, despite being secretary of state, is no greater than the person who comes and cleans my office's vote. that every vote counts in america. and we have to make that our rather than constantly weaken it with allegations. so i stand very firmly on that and most folks in the state know that. i know what it's like when you can't vote. my father was denied the opportunity to vote in arkansas for many years. i know what it's like when you can't vote and i also know when there is nothing to vote for. i have to ensure those are two things we keep on focus always. >> you just preached the word. those are auntie words. this panel has been trance fixed by your message, especially considering what we have been dealing with around the country
and suppression of folks especially of black and brown people. we really thank you for joining us. we know it's been a long day for you. i think you have a long road ahead anyways even without doing this interview. >> we do. >> thank you very much. you be well. >> we have a mission. thank you very much. you do the same. >> so we will take a quick break. cnn is predicting that governor gavin newsom defeats the recall. more of our coverage in just a moment. got my cashback match is this for real? yup! we match all the cash back new card members earn at the end of their first year automatically woo! i got my mo-ney! it's hard to contain yourself isn't it? uh- huh! well let it go! woooo! get a dollar for dollar match at the end of your first year. only from discover.
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here is the breaking news on cnn. cnn is projecting gavin newsom, governor there in california, will defeat the recall. back again with harry enten. >> mask mandates were more popular than any politician. 70% said they supported mask mandates in school. that 70% in california will transport itself to be a majority in the rest of the nation.
tough measures on covid wins. it is a good message for democrats going forward. >> there you have it. he knows all. what does chris call you again? >> the wizard of odds, my friend. >> not a good name. >> better than harry. >> standby. we have a panel of experts here we will get to them in just minutes on cnn. there is breaking news. cnn is projecting that governor gavin newsom is defeating the attempt to remove him from office. much more straight ahead on cnn's continuing coverage of the recall election. ♪ when technology is easier to use... ♪ barriers don't stand a chance. ♪ that's why we'll stop at nothing to deliver our technology as-a-service. ♪
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