On Monday, Newsom was a guest on "MSNBC Reports" to discuss the upcoming recall election. MSNBC anchor Ayman Mohyeldin used the subject to bring up Newsom’s COVID-19 policies which he admitted were "a driving force behind the recall effort."
"Let’s talk about the intersection, if we can, of COVID and politics for a moment. You’re handling of the coronavirus, sir, has been a driving force behind the recall effort," Mohyeldin said. "And what do you attribute those 25% that have remained unvaccinated. What do you attribute that to in your state?"
Newsom blamed the number of unvaccinated citizens primarily on "overwhelming majority of misinformation by right-wing pundits." However, he also added that these pundits are the same people behind the recall efforts in California.
"Well, overwhelming majority of misinformation by right-wing pundits, period, full stop. Time to be a little bit more specific....There’s been a right-wing talking point here and it’s overwhelmingly coming from certain networks and it’s having an impact on getting this disease behind us....And including, by the way, the folks that are behind this damn recall in California," Newsom said. "These are the exact same people describing mask covering to the equivalency of the Holocaust, it’s the same folks. So, look, you’re right, those things are connected, at least in this state."
The recall campaign against Newsom first began in June 2020. The recall efforts against Newsom gained momentum after photos emerged of the governor attending a lunch at the French Laundry restaurant which was in violation of his own strict coronavirus lockdown policies.
Anne Dunsmore, the campaign manager and finance director of the recall campaign, emphasized to Fox News that his policies as well as this behavior that were the primary motivation for the recall.
"Closing the beaches and closing the parks really was the beginning that I saw on the ground of the beginning of the end for him, as far as people taking the recall stuff seriously," Dunsmore said.
The recall became official in June of this year after receiving more than 1.7 million signatures. The recall election is now scheduled for September 14.
Recent polls also showed a tightening race for the California governor. A UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies/Los Angeles Times survey showed that among likely California voters 47 percent supported the effort to recall Newsom while 50 percent opposed it. Among the wider poll of all registered voters, support for the recall fell to 36 percent while opposition raised to 51 percent