President Biden released a statement Wednesday lauding California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s recall election victory, calling it a “win” for “strong vaccine requirements.”
“Congratulations to Governor Gavin Newsom on defeating the recall vote,” Biden’s statement said. “This vote is 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.”
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Biden added, “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.”
California residents voted Tuesday night to keep Gov. Newsom in office after a recall effort – largely influenced by the governor’s strict coronavirus restrictions – gathered over 1.5 million signatures and made it on the ballot.
In order to oust Newsom, more than 50% of voters needed to vote to remove him, at which point he would have been replaced by the challenger with the highest vote total. Less than 40% of voters voted to recall Newsom and almost 64% voted to keep him in power.
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“We said yes to science,” Newsom told reporters after he was declared the winner. “We said yes to vaccines. We said yes to ending this pandemic.”
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On Wednesday, the day after Newsom’s victory, Los Angeles County health officials announced a new health order mandating proof of coronavirus vaccination in order to gain entrance to indoor bars, wineries, large sporting events, breweries, nightclubs, and lounges.
Earlier this month, Biden announced that he was implementing an employee vaccine mandate for all companies in the United States with over 100 workers andm announcing that the administration has not ruled out further vaccine requirements in the future.