Gas tax recall effort for Josh Newman grows


Perceived as the most vulnerable of the legislative Democrats who passed Gov. Jerry Brown’s gas and vehicle tax package by a razor-thin margin, freshman state Sen. Josh Newman, D-Fullerton, faced an intensifying campaign to turn him out of office, potentially depriving his party of the two-thirds majority that allowed them to pass Brown’s infrastructure bill in the first place. 

Targeted politics

“State election officials formally approved the recall campaign against Sen. Josh Newman of Fullerton on [May 8]. The recall is promoted by radio hosts Karl DeMaio of KOGO in San Diego and John and Ken of KFI in Los Angeles,” noted the Associated Press. “Recall organizers have until Oct. 16 to collect signatures from 63,593 voters.” 

Newman was singled out thanks to his narrow victory last year, in a district Republicans held before and believe they can reclaim with voter frustration on their side.” After besting favored Democrat Sukhee Kang last June, Newman squeaked out a surprise 3,185-vote win over Republican Assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang in November,” the Orange County Register reported.

“The seat had been held by termed-out Republican Bob Huff and the win gave Democrats the two-thirds majority they needed to pass tax increases without a single GOP vote. They took advantage of that on April 6, passing a $52-billion transportation package to be paid for by increased gas and vehicle registration fees. While there was one Democratic defection in the Senate, Democrats picked up the support of Sen. Anthony Cannella, R-Modesto, in exchange for $500 million in projects for his district.”

High stakes, big names

Although sinking Newman would be victory enough, DeMaio set his sights on breaking the two-thirds supermajority in Sacramento with room to spare. “After Newman is gone, DeMaio and his allies hope to pick off other Democrats, even those in rock-solid Democratic districts,” wrote Steven Greenhut at the Register. “He’s more than happy to help replace tax-supporting Democrats with those who oppose these transportation-tax increases. In fact, he doesn’t see this as a partisan issue at all, but as a ‘working-class families’ issue. And he doesn’t care who replaces Newman or others, as long as the new legislator opposes these increases.”

“No doubt, if Newman is bounced and the political lions start circling another vulnerable legislator, we might see a change in strategy within the Capitol herd. For now, Democrats and their interest groups are trying to protect Newman, as evidenced by recent comments by Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin de Leon. This is an important seat for them given the implications for their supermajority, which is why even former President Barack Obama endorsed Newman in the November race.”

Lending an additional hand was Gov. Jerry Brown himself, who helped shore up Newman’s shaky fortunes by throwing a special event for the lawmaker. Brown “thinks it is unfair that some activists are trying to recall Newman for his vote favoring an increase in gas taxes to pay for road repairs,” the Los Angeles Times reported, citing top aide Nancy McFadden. “The Brown camp also is skeptical that opponents of the gas tax bill will be able to carry out their threat of qualifying an initiative to repeal Senate Bill 1 but are prepared to do battle if it makes the ballot.”

“It is unusual for him to do an individual legislator’s fundraiser because if he did one he would have do to lots, but Josh is under unfair attack and so the governor wants to make sure he knows that he’s got his back – that’s why he is stepping out and doing this for him,” McFadden said.


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  1. Susan
    Susan 18 May, 2017, 17:37

    Jerry Brown has called taxpayers FREELOADERS! Huh?
    Check out the Josh Newman recall effort and do what you can.

    Reply this comment
    • Robert Curtis
      Robert Curtis 21 May, 2017, 00:06

      It is premature to recall a senator that (on paper) is overall very moderate, a veteran (former US Army Captain), Yale Graduate, a family man with a new born and a businessman that championed getting veterans jobs. Not a career politician he’s an easy target. I’m for recalling the recall…give the guy at least a full term if he doesn’t perform then vote him out…

      Reply this comment
      • darknagual
        darknagual 24 May, 2017, 13:46

        This guy stated he was against tax increases. New tax is never ends will increase with inflation. A good portion of this money will not be going to road repairs. More tax plans underway and there is the nightmare of single payer health.
        With a supermajority these clowns have carte blanche to raise taxes as they please.
        So no, this guy will not get a year to see what happens

        Reply this comment
  2. Dude
    Dude 18 May, 2017, 19:38

    Well, if Jerry thinks he’s ok, then… all means, let’s kick his corrupt behind out.

    Reply this comment
  3. Ulysses Uhaul
    Ulysses Uhaul 18 May, 2017, 22:03

    I guess politically ruling you doomers includes publically insulting you……if this drifts down to the bloodshot eye commuters, under paid distribution workers, the struggling working poor…….there will be voter wrath bigger than Herr Arnold’s “blow up the boxes”.

    Reply this comment
  4. bob
    bob 19 May, 2017, 09:30

    When you factor in the Cap and Trade tax Colliefornians (as Ahnode calls them) already pay the highest gas taxes in the country.

    And now the Old Brown Buzzard and his Demonrat buddies plus Anthony Corruptella Cannella want you to pay much more. (Gas tax to go up 12 cents in November and another 7 cents in a year after that and then the tax goes up EVERY YEAR after that as it is indexed to inflation. Diesel tax goes up over 20 cents a gallon and car registration goes up too. And all indexed to inflation so it will go up every year.)

    And guess what? You already paying the highest taxes in the nation don’t want to pay even more?

    Well, the Old Brown Buzzard says you are a freeloader!

    Revolt of the California Freeloaders

    “If you live in California, have a job and pay taxes Governor Jerry Brown would like you to know that you’re a freeloader and he’s tired of your complaining,”

    Brown has been a politician sucking off the gooberment teat his whole life, same with his dad…runs in the family. Only a parasite like that could call the people paying the bills freeloaders!

    Reply this comment
  5. Spurwing Plover
    Spurwing Plover 19 May, 2017, 13:56

    Moonbeam Brown is a total baffoon and a idiot a typical liberal with a walnut sized brain

    Reply this comment
  6. Bill Kilgore
    Bill Kilgore 19 May, 2017, 18:15

    Tax’em to the stone age, son!

    Reply this comment
  7. Dude
    Dude 19 May, 2017, 20:04

    Time to drain California’s swamp.

    Reply this comment
  8. Sammy the Bull
    Sammy the Bull 20 May, 2017, 06:38

    Pretty much the ONLY thing Californians seem to care about is the cost of gas. Seriously. They blow off EVERYTHING else as the years slide by in freeway and palm tree ‘paradise’. Absolute apathy. Then, out of some cloistered think tank comes a creature such as Mr. Josh Newman. Just LOOK at him: social engineer writ large. Hey Jerry Brown: pull your head out of Gavin Newsome’s splendid progressive anus long enough to see that HELL HATH NO FURY LIKE A CALIFORNIA VOTER THAT MUST SPEND 25% OF HER PAYCHECK JUST GETTING TO WORK!

    Reply this comment
  9. Queeg
    Queeg 20 May, 2017, 18:32

    Who do you trust?

    Yourself Comrades.


    Reply this comment
  10. Robert Curtis
    Robert Curtis 21 May, 2017, 00:05

    It is premature to recall a senator that (on paper) is overall very moderate, a veteran (former US Army Captain), Yale Graduate, a family man with a new born and a businessman that championed getting veterans jobs. Not a career politician he’s an easy target. I’m for recalling the recall…give the guy at least a full term if he doesn’t perform then vote him out…

    Reply this comment
    • ricky65
      ricky65 21 May, 2017, 08:53

      Newman voted for the gas tax/vehicle registration ripoff against the middle class and the poor and basically against his constituent’s interests.
      That tells you all you need to know about him.

      Reply this comment
      • Susan
        Susan 21 May, 2017, 11:16

        True — but if anyone wants more, Newman’s own campaign endorsement page is revealing, too: A long list of people and organizations whose efforts have helped to destroy California:
        “NewmanforSenate — Endorsements”

        Uh, sort of goes against the intended perception of a sensible, moderate candidate who would likely respect taxpayers and all good things; military background, family man, blah, blah, blah.

        And he campaigned in a cuddly bear suit — no comment

        Reply this comment
  11. Dude
    Dude 21 May, 2017, 09:37

    Hmmm, how about “No”. We’re going to fire his behind because he’s siding with Moonbeam’s royal tax decree. Jerry has the same problem as Obama, in that he has forgotten he’s a public servant, but instead thinks he’s the king.

    Reply this comment
  12. jSKI
    jSKI 26 May, 2017, 12:50

    Thank you CalWatchDog for keeping us informed when the media will not.

    Reply this comment
  13. GC
    GC 3 June, 2017, 12:53

    Newman’s recall opponents promote felonious petition signing and harassment of collectors:

    Reply this comment
  14. Dude
    Dude 5 June, 2017, 18:29

    Where’s the fund me site for getting this turd flushed? I’m ready to donate.

    Reply this comment

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