Recall Elections in the US: Its Long Past and Uncertain Future

  • Joshua Spivak


Thanks to the recall of California Governor Gray Davis in 2003, and his replacement by international movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger, the recall gained a spotlight. While this may be part of an expansion of the recall throughout the globe, a look back at US history shows that it has been popular before, only to crash back into disuse. The recall is currently in a boom phase, as jurisdictions in the US have adopted the recall over the last decade, and it may be growing in use. There are technological reasons to believe that the recall will not effectively disappear in the future and may continue to grow. However, there are also practical hurdles that will prevent the recall from becoming a major player in US politics, even in many of the states that possess what this part of what the Los Angeles Times once called “freak legislation.”


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joshua Spivak
    • 1
  1. 1.Hugh L. Carey Institute for Government ReformWagner CollegeNew YorkUSA

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