Whenever there’s an election in California, hunger is always on the ballot. Next week’s election is no different. Legislation and government accountability is critical to our mission, and every election can have enormous impact. The governor plays an immense role in determining legislation, budgets and appointing officials that shape our communities.

It’s been 18 years since the last recall election and we’ve received a lot of questions about it. We don’t blame you, it’s confusing! It’s important every voice is heard, and to help navigate next week’s election we’ve reached out to ACCFB’s Government Relations Manager, Alex Boskovich and Community Organizer Henry Easton Koehler for a little help understanding how this all works.

Your Recall Questions, Answered

What’s a “recall election” and how does it work?

It’s actually pretty simple: A recall election is one where voters determine whether the current governor gets to stay in office.

If a majority (50% plus 1) of the ballots vote “NO”, Governor Newsom stays in office. If a majority choose “YES”, then the governor loses his job.

OK, we’re following. What happens if more than 50% of the ballots vote yes to recall?

In the case of a recall, Governor Newsom loses his job as governor, and the replacement candidate with the most votes assumes the role of governor. It does not require a majority. In fact—with 45 replacement candidates—in the case of this recall, it’s likely a candidate with less than 20% of the vote would be the governor.

Wait…you’re telling me that a candidate that gets, say, only 15% of the vote could be California’s governor?


I’m confused. Why isn’t Governor Newsom listed as a candidate?

No worries – it is confusing! Think of this as a two-part question. You may answer both, but aren’t required. Governor Newsom can’t run against himself – so if you want Newsom to remain governor, a “NO” on the recall is technically a vote to keep him in office. Whether you vote NO or YES, you may also select a candidate to replace him, which would only happen in the case he is recalled.

If only I knew sooner! I tossed/lost my ballot. What do I do?!

You can start by calling the Alameda County Registrar of Voters to request a new Vote by Mail Ballot: (510) 272-6973. If you don’t live in Alameda County, you can find your county elections office here.

Make sure you can get your replacement ballot in time to vote by 9/14. If you aren’t going to be able to receive a new ballot in time, you can always vote at a voting location starting September 11th. You will be asked to fill out a provisional ballot.

What if I’m not registered to vote?

You can do same-day registration at any voting location or at the county elections office! You will be asked to fill out a provisional ballot.

So…how should I vote?

As a nonprofit, we do not endorse candidates or political parties, nor we will tell you how to vote. This is your decision to make. However, we strongly recommend you research all the candidates including Governor Newsom and make the most informed decision based on what you believe is best for you, our community, and the State.

Check out accfb.org/vote to make your plan to vote!