Joe Biden Says Gavin Newsom’s Recall Victory Affirms Covid-19 Strategy, Vaccine Requirements

President Joe Biden delivers remarks about a national security initiative on September 15, 2021 in the East Room of the White House. (Photo by Oliver Contreras/Sipa USA)(Sipa via AP Images)

President Joe Biden sees Governor Gavin Newsom’s resounding win in California’s recall as an affirmation of robust Covid-19 protocols, including vaccine requirements and school safety measures.

The White House released a statement from Biden on Wednesday in which he said that the vote was “a resounding win for the approach that he and I share to beating the pandemic: strong vaccine requirements, strong steps to reopen schools safely, and strong plans to distribute real medicines—not fake treatments—to help those who get sick. The fact that voters in both traditionally Democratic and traditionally Republican parts of the state rejected the recall shows that Americans are unifying behind taking these steps to get the pandemic behind us.”

According to the latest vote count, the “No’ on the recall led with 63.9% of the vote and the “Yes” side had 36.1%, with about 70% of the vote in. Major networks began calling the race for Newsom about 40 minutes after polls closed on Tuesday.

Biden campaigned with Newsom on Monday evening. The president called Larry Elder, seeking to replace the current governor, a clone of Donald Trump and out of step with the state’s voters.

Elder held a wide lead on the recall’s second question of who should replace Newsom, as the radio talk host had almost 47% of the vote. But that question is moot because voters rejected the recall on the first ballot question. Elder conceded the race in a speech to his supporters on Tuesday evening, but vowed to continue on in politics in the state.

Perhaps the best known of all the 46 candidates vying to replace Newsom was Caitlyn Jenner. But she was trailing with just 1.1% of the votes.

“I can’t believe that this many people actually voted to keep him in office,” Jenner told reporters on Tuesday night. “It’s a shame. Honestly, it’s a shame. You kind of get the government you deserve.”

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