Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguín and other local Democratic organizations led a “No Recall Berkeley Canvass” event Sunday to raise awareness about California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s recall election.
More than 20 volunteers canvassed Berkeley neighborhoods, knocked on doors and directly talked to voters, informing them about the election and urging them to vote “no” on the recall, according to Arreguín.
Davina Srioudom, president of Cal Berkeley Democrats, also noted that canvassers reminded voters how to fill out the ballots, and encouraged them to turn in their ballots prior to Sept. 14.
Arreguín mentioned that participants and organizers of the canvass event are “strongly opposed” to the “wasteful” recall.
“This is an undemocratic attempt to use the recall process and a low turnout election to unseat a democratically elected official,” Arreguín said in an email. “It is also incredibly destabilizing for our state while we are in the middle of a public health emergency.”
Arreguín added that opposing the recall election is necessary in order to fight against COVID-19 and the climate emergency, as well as ensure access to health care, economic and racial justice.
Igor Tregub, acting president of Berkeley Democratic Caucus and vice chair of the Alameda County Democratic Central Committee, also helped organize the canvassing event.
Tregub noted that while many Democrats in Alameda County have pushed the governor further to the left on housing and climate justice issues, all Democrats he spoke to are “united” in rejecting the recall.
Tregub also added that the recall is a “costly and divisive” effort.
“The recall is a stark choice between a Democratic governor who has faithfully steered our state out of one of the darkest periods in our history, and Republican candidates who have gone on record supporting a $0.00 minimum wage and opposing vaccination and science,” Tregub said in a Facebook message.
Additionally, Arreguín explained that Sunday’s canvassing events were one of many efforts occurring in Alameda County in an effort to reject the recall. Specifically, the Democratic Party is organizing “anti-recall campaign efforts” in Alameda County and Berkeley.
Arreguín also added that local Democratic clubs will be working hard to oppose the recall in the next coming weeks as ballots have been arriving this week.
In the coming weeks, the Alameda County Democratic Party will host “door to door canvassing” and phone banking opportunities, according to Arreguín.
Berkeley Democratic Caucus will also co-sponsor virtual phone banking opportunities and more in-person canvassing efforts in Berkeley.
“We plan to be actively engaged in the No on Recall effort over the next five weeks. The stakes could not be higher,” Tregub said.
Cal Dems will host an event Aug. 21 to start canvassing in Berkeley’s Northside and Southside area, according to Srioudom.
Srioudom said the club will continue to organize more phone banking and canvassing opportunities as UC Berkeley students return to campus this fall.