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San Francisco ousts DA Chesa Boudin with 25.8% voter turnout

San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin poses at his campaign headquarters in San Francisco, on May 26, 2022.
Eric Risberg
Eric Risberg
San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin poses at his campaign headquarters in San Francisco, on May 26, 2022.

On this edition of Your Call, we'll discuss San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin who was recalled by 60 percent of (74,335) voters. Only 25.8 percent of registered voters returned their ballots (127,926 out of 495,498 registered voters). Mayor London Breed will choose Boudin's replacement.

Recall supporters, backed by $7.2 million in contributions, said, "Chesa Boudin is failing us. We need real public safety and accountability." After the results came in last night, Boudin said, "People are angry, they’re frustrated, and I want to be very clear about what happened tonight. The right-wing billionaires outspent us three to one. They exploited an environment in which people are appropriately upset and they created an electoral environment in which we were literally shadow boxing."

What does this outcome mean for the future of criminal justice reform?


Tim Redmond, founder of 48hills

Akhi Johnson, director of the Reshaping Prosecution Initiative at the Vera Institute of Justice

Web Resources:

48hills: What the Boudin recall does—and doesn’t—mean for SF politics

The Guardian: San Francisco recalls DA Chesa Boudin in blow to criminal justice reform

The San Francisco Chronicle: San Francisco voters got rid of Chesa Boudin — and may soon face a recall hangover

The San Francisco Chronicle: Chesa Boudin recall supporters raised $7.2 million to oust the San Francisco D.A. These are the biggest donors

Mission Local: SFPD rate of solving crimes, already well below national average, gets worse

The Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice: San Franciscans Spend More And Get Less From Their Police Department Than Most Major Cities

KQED: Why High-Profile Attacks on SF's Asian Communities Rarely Lead to Hate Crime Charges

Intelligencer: The Limits of San Francisco Liberalism

The Nation: Fear & Loathing in San Francisco: How Chesa Boudin Got Blamed

Slate: What the Great Pushback Against Urban Progressives Is Really About

Vox: Why some voters are trying to recall San Francisco’s progressive DA

Rose Aguilar has been the host of Your Call since 2006. She became a regular media roundtable guest in 2001. In 2019, the San Francisco Press Club named Your Call the best public affairs program. In 2017, The Nation named it the most valuable local radio show.
Bee Soll is a producer with Your Call at KALW, and a producer, writer, and editor at KCBS Radio in San Francisco. She is a former reporter for Crosscurrents and contributor at KPFA Radio.