Letters to the Editor: If Larry Elder is elected, why not try to recall him?

A sign urging people to vote yes on recalling Gov. Gavin Newsom sits in a storefront window in Burbank on Aug. 25.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: In its Aug. 22 editorial, The Times imagines the “what ifs” of a recall loss by Gov. Gavin Newsom, with Larry Elder — an unqualified purveyor of alarmingly extremist policies — “winning” the second question on the ballot and and becoming governor, only to be defeated by Newsom himself in the regularly scheduled gubernatorial contest in 2022.

Why wait so long to right an unconstitutional, undemocratic wrong? Instead, why not immediately launch a second recall election, this time for Elder, especially since there are no required grounds to initiate a recall?

In this second recall election, in heavily Democratic California, Elder likely gets recalled, and Newsom, appearing now as a replacement candidate, likely regains his job.


This would do two things: It would restore Newsom to a position from which he should not have been taken in the first place, and it would so highlight the insanity of a recall system that permits such electoral shenanigans to occur — including even, this second recall election — that it might actually (and finally) spur efforts to reform or even eliminate it.

Scott Roth, Sherman Oaks


To the editor: Among the Republican candidates running to replace Newsom, Elder is the most dangerous of that group.

Elder has a history of making racist remarks. He has frequently insulted Blacks, Latinos and minorities on his radio show.

Enacting his positions would be disastrous. He opposes social programs for the needy, ignores climate change, advocates for no minimum wage, opposes police reform and denies the existence of systemic racism in America

Seeing Elder become governor would be the political equivalent of watching an earthquake rip up buildings and streets, and standing by as raging wildfires burn down communities and destroy forests. Newsom has his faults, but right now he is the best person to lead the diverse state of California.


Donald Peppars, Pomona


To the editor: Another way in which a Gov. Larry Elder would be a gift to Democrats is that he would have no credibility in vetoing legislation.

When moderate Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown issued vetoes, he provided a voice of reason to the Legislature from within the party and could spark reasonable debate, even if overridden.

The Democratic supermajority could dismiss any resistance as that of a partisan governor elected with a small minority and push even farther to the left, which should scare recall supporters.

But then again, the recall was never about the long game anyway.

Michael Smallberg, Virginia Beach, Va.


To the editor: A demagogue such as Elder can damage California by discouraging competent people from staying in government service. That’s lasting harm.


The former president led many good professionals to seek employment elsewhere. That loss means the current president can’t implement the policies America needs as effectively as he might have.

California needs competent people in the administration.

Peter Jacobsen, Davis


To the editor: After hearing from the top Republicans running to replace Newsom, I can only conclude that they would make us another Texas, Florida, Louisiana or Mississippi in the fight against COVID-19. This is especially so for Elder, who consistently attacks Newsom but never seems to offer his own solutions.

He recently said that he would repeal mask and vaccine mandates before he drinks his first cup of coffee as governor — and he doesn’t even drink coffee.

In other words, California will have another one of those Republican governors thwarting mask and vaccine mandates — while being vaccinated themselves — letting their residents suffer with rising COVID-19 cases and full hospitals.

That’s where California could be if Newsom is recalled and a supporter of former President Trump becomes governor.


Richard Nieto, Alhambra


To the editor: As columnist Jean Guerrero writes, Elder’s views are horrible for California; his TV ads are even worse.

Thanks to Guerrero for bringing it all front and center. It’s my fervent hope that this clown and his requisite clown show are off the air come Sept. 14.

Anne Proffit, Long Beach