Conservative radio host Larry Elder said on Monday that he would enter the California gubernatorial recall election.
“I am hereby announcing that I will run for governor of California in this recall election,” Elder told listeners of his show.
Elder said was initially reluctant to run for office in California, in part because of widespread control of the state government by Democrats. However, he eventually decided to make the attempt, in part after encouragement by supporters including fellow radio host Dennis Prager.
“I have common sense. I have good judgment. I’m born and raised here. I think I understand the state,” Elder told the Associated Press. “I know it’s a long shot,” but Elder said he had a “fire in the belly to see if I can do something . . . to move the needle in the right direction.”
A recall petition against current Governor Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, gained steam during the coronavirus pandemic. Newsom faced backlash from parents frustrated over the state’s inability to reopen public schools, and his popularity has fallen amid business closures. In November 2020, Newsom was photographed dining at a Napa Valley restaurant without observing the state’s mitigation guidelines.
The recall election, scheduled for September 14, already has a crowded field of Republican candidates, including former San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer and former Olympian and reality-TV star Caitlyn Jenner.