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San Francisco voters reject Proposition C


On Tuesday, San Francisco voters defeated Proposition C, a measure aimed at reforming the city’s rules for recall elections. Voters rejected the ballot question by a 60 to 40 margin.

Proposition C comes on the heels of last year’s failed recall of Governor Gavin Newsom. Since the city’s Board of Supervisors approved the measure for yesterday’s election in February, recall elections have ousted three city school board members, as well as District Attorney Chesa Boudin.

The measure sought to extend a ban on initiating recall petitions from six months to a year after someone has assumed office. It would have also banned elected officials from being recalled during the final year of their term. In addition, it would have kept people appointed to replace a recalled leader from running in the following election.

Ahead of the vote, City Controller Ben Rosenfield stated that Prop C would result in "moderate savings" to the cost of government and likely decrease the number of special elections required in the city in any given year.

In an editorial supporting the proposition, the San Francisco Examiner echoed Mr. Rosenfield’s fiscal analysis, arguing that changing the rules would prevent losing candidates from using recalls to punish their opponents who might have to fend off recall threats before they’re even sworn in.

Raphael Cohen is part of KALW's Summer Journalism Training Program and produces work for Crosscurrents.