California gubernatorial election, 2002

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California gubernatorial election, 2002
California
1998 ←
November 5, 2002 → 2003

  Gdavis.jpg Bill-simon.jpg Peter Camejo.gif
Nominee Gray Davis Bill Simon Peter Camejo
Party Democratic Republican Green
Popular vote 3,533,490 3,169,801 393,036
Percentage 47.26% 42.40% 5.26%

CA2002Gov.svg

County Results

Governor before election

Gray Davis
Democratic

Elected Governor

Gray Davis
Democratic

The 2002 California gubernatorial election was an election that occurred on November 5, 2002. Democrat Gray Davis defeated Republican Bill Simon by 5% and was re-elected to a second four-year term as Governor of California. Davis would be recalled less than a year into his next term.

The 2002 gubernatorial primary occurred in March 2002. Gray Davis faced no major competitor in the primary and won the nomination. Simon defeated former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan in the Republican primary. Gray Davis ran a series of negative ads against Riordan in the primary. Riordan was seen as a moderate and early state polls showed him defeating Gray Davis in the general election.

Primaries[edit]

During the 2002 election campaign, Davis took the unusual step of taking out campaign ads during the Republican primaries against Los Angeles mayor Richard Riordan. Davis claimed that Riordan had attacked his record and that his campaign was defending his record.[1] Polls showed that, as a moderate, Riordan would be a more formidable challenger in the general election than a conservative candidate. Polls even showed that Riordan would defeat Davis.[2] Davis attacked Riordan with negative ads in the primary. The ads questioned Riordan's pro-choice stance by questioning Riordan's support of pro-life politicians and judges.[3][4] The ads pointed out Riordan's position of wanting a moratorium on the death penalty as being to the left of Gray Davis, who strongly supported it.[5][6][7]

In 2000, the United States Supreme Court in California Democratic Party v. Jones struck down California's blanket primary.[8] With the end of the blanket primary, only non-partisans and registered Republicans could vote for Richard Riordan in the 2002 primary. The end of the blanket primary made it more difficult for the more moderate Riordan. It has long been known in politics that primary voters are much more ideological and strongly liberal or strongly conservative than those who vote in the general election.[9]

Additionally, the Republican primary included negative attacks between Bill Jones and Riordan. Jones highlighted in his attack ads against Riordan that Riordan had contributed money Davis in past campaigns and had called Bill Clinton "the greatest leader in the free world." Riordan's counter ads highlighted that Jones had also contributed money to Davis. By late February 2002, Riordian's strong lead in the Republican primary had begun to slip. In the previous months of the campaign, Riordan focused his ads and energies on campaigning against Gray Davis and defending himself from Davis' attack ads.[5]

Davis's negative ads against Riordan appear to have contributed to Riordan's defeat in the Republican primary by the more staunchly conservative candidate Bill Simon.[10]

Primary results[edit]

Final results from the Secretary of State of California.[11]

Democratic[edit]

California gubernatorial Democratic primary, 2002
Candidate Votes Percentage
Gray Davis 1,755,276 80.90%
Anselmo A. Chavez 179,301 8.26%
Charles "Chuck" Pineda, Jr. 139,121 6.41%
Mosemarie Boyd 95,857 4.42%
Total votes 2,169,555 100.00%

Republican[edit]

California gubernatorial Republican primary, 2002
Candidate Votes Percentage
Bill Simon 1,129,973 49.44%
Richard Riordan 715,768 31.32%
Bill Jones 387,237 16.94%
Nick Jesson 19,287 0.84%
Edie Bukewihge 14,436 0.63%
Danney Ball 13,156 0.58%
Jim Dimov 5,595 0.24%
Total votes 2,285,452 100.00%

Libertarian[edit]

California gubernatorial Libertarian primary, 2002
Candidate Votes Percentage
Gary David Copeland 19,079 98.80%
Art Olivier (write-in) 232 1.20%
Total votes 19,311 100.00%

Others[edit]

California gubernatorial primary, 2002 (Others)
Party Candidate Votes %
Green Peter Miguel Camejo 35,767 100.00%
American Independent Reinhold Gulke 26,269 100.00%
Natural Law Iris Adam 4,402 100.00%

General election[edit]

Campaign[edit]

Davis was re-elected in the November 2002 general election following a long and bitter campaign against Simon, marked by accusations of ethical lapses on both sides and widespread voter apathy.[12] Simon was also hurt by a financial fraud scandal that tarnished his reputation.[13] Davis' campaign featured several negative ads that highlighted Simon's financial fraud scandal.[14] Simon tried to attack Davis for fundraising in the Lieutenant Governor's office during his time as Lt. Governor, but the plan backfired when Davis produced evidence that the picture was taken in his Los Angeles home.[15] The 2002 gubernatorial race was the most expensive in California state history with over $100 million spent.[16] Davis's campaign was better financed; Davis had over $26 million in campaign reserves more than Simon in August 2006.[14] Davis won re-election with 47.4% of the vote to Simon's 42.4%. The Simon-Davis race led in the lowest turnout percentage in modern gubernatorial history, allowing a lower than normal amount of signatures required for a recall.[17] Davis won the election but the majority of the voters disliked Davis and did not approve of his job performance.[18][19]

Results[edit]

2002 California gubernatorial election
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Gray Davis (incumbent) 3,533,490 47.26%
Republican Bill Simon 3,169,801 42.40%
Green Peter Miguel Camejo 393,036 5.26%
Libertarian Gary David Copeland 161,203 2.16%
American Independent Reinhold Gulke 128,035 1.71%
Natural Law Iris Adam 88,415 1.18%
No party Write-ins 2,371 0.03%
Invalid or blank votes 262,470 3.39%
Totals 7,738,821 100.00%
Voter turnout 36.05%
Democratic hold

Results breakdown[edit]

County Davis Votes Simon Votes Camejo Votes Copeland Votes Others Votes
San Francisco 66.20% 143,102 15.37% 33,214 15.50% 33,495 1.41% 3,048 1.53% 3,297
Alameda 62.83% 216,058 22.22% 76,407 11.03% 37,919 1.91% 6,558 2.02% 6,959
San Mateo 57.95% 99,803 29.90% 51,497 7.86% 13,537 1.86% 3,205 2.42% 4,168
Marin 56.23% 49,512 27.85% 24,520 12.16% 10,710 1.71% 1,502 2.06% 1,811
Santa Cruz 56.03% 43,469 26.55% 20,598 12.13% 9,409 2.29% 1,777 3.00% 2,331
Los Angeles 55.87% 953,162 34.86% 594,748 4.27% 72,886 2.34% 39,934 2.66% 45,329
Santa Clara 55.33% 199,399 32.43% 116,862 6.69% 24,097 2.62% 9,430 2.94% 10,608
Monterey 54.10% 47,052 36.25% 31,532 4.36% 3,794 2.52% 2,191 2.77% 2,405
Imperial 53.29% 11,644 40.23% 8,789 2.50% 546 1.18% 258 2.80% 612
Contra Costa 53.22% 140,975 35.67% 94,487 6.30% 16,676 2.23% 5,894 2.58% 6,838
Solano 52.40% 46,385 37.86% 33,516 4.56% 4,038 1.49% 1,316 3.69% 3,267
Sonoma 50.39% 73,079 29.93% 43,408 13.51% 19,599 2.14% 3,097 4.03% 5,845
San Benito 48.89% 6,049 41.73% 5,163 4.07% 504 2.22% 275 3.09% 382
Napa 47.76% 17,516 36.77% 13,483 9.73% 3,570 2.11% 774 3.62% 1,329
Yolo 47.43% 21,983 37.72% 17,484 10.64% 4,934 1.17% 543 3.04% 1,409
Lake 46.71% 7,424 40.64% 6,459 6.07% 965 2.11% 336 4.46% 709
Humboldt 45.44% 19,499 37.56% 16,118 12.05% 5,170 2.24% 961 2.70% 1,159
Merced 44.56% 18,071 47.32% 19,191 1.95% 792 3.40% 1,379 2.77% 1,125
Santa Barbara 44.32% 50,741 46.15% 52,832 5.05% 5,785 2.26% 2,586 2.22% 2,547
San Joaquin 43.54% 53,747 47.18% 58,239 3.75% 4,630 2.06% 2,540 3.47% 4,287
Stanislaus 43.57% 41,908 47.91% 46,091 3.08% 2,967 1.44% 1,385 4.00% 3,843
Mendocino 43.50% 10,832 33.45% 8,331 16.54% 4,119 2.33% 581 4.18% 1,041
Ventura 43.21% 83,557 47.16% 91,193 3.39% 6,563 2.99% 5,787 3.25% 6,287
Del Norte 43.29% 2,922 45.82% 3,093 3.07% 207 2.44% 165 5.38% 363
San Bernardino 41.23% 116,757 50.32% 142,513 2.38% 6,754 2.29% 6,485 3.77% 10,682
Sacramento 40.82% 129,143 46.60% 147,456 7.03% 22,232 2.10% 6,634 3.46% 10,932
Alpine 40.89% 229 44.11% 247 7.14% 40 2.68% 15 5.18% 29
San Diego 40.57% 268,278 51.73% 342,095 2.75% 18,184 2.08% 13,742 2.87% 18,999
Riverside 40.25% 121,845 52.68% 159,440 1.98% 5,995 2.18% 6,601 2.91% 8,802
Tuolumne 38.16% 6,846 51.56% 9,251 4.31% 773 1.83% 328 4.15% 744
Fresno 37.96% 59,019 55.26% 85,910 2.26% 3,508 2.29% 3,560 2.23% 3,474
Trinity 37.23% 1,833 49.17% 2,421 5.52% 272 2.84% 140 5.24% 258
Kings 36.65% 7,776 57.56% 12,212 1.40% 298 1.16% 246 3.22% 683
San Luis Obispo 36.40% 29,732 53.31% 43,552 5.13% 4,189 1.98% 1,618 3.18% 2,599
Mono 35.99% 1,064 52.50% 1,552 5.21% 154 2.17% 64 4.13% 122
Orange 34.66% 222,149 57.43% 368,152 2.60% 16,670 2.29% 14,668 3.02% 19,369
Amador 34.19% 4,437 53.91% 6,997 5.70% 740 1.90% 246 4.30% 558
Tulare 34.07% 21,294 59.48% 37,172 1.74% 1,090 1.93% 1,208 2.77% 1,734
Nevada 33.93% 13,338 52.33% 20,573 8.39% 3,297 1.89% 743 3.47% 1,364
Inyo 33.62% 2,114 56.73% 3,567 3.34% 210 2.26% 142 4.06% 255
Kern 33.69% 46,250 60.21% 82,660 1.43% 1,965 1.34% 1,839 3.33% 4,574
Calaveras 33.25% 5,052 53.34% 8,104 5.76% 875 2.86% 434 4.80% 729
Plumas 33.06% 2,598 54.85% 4,310 4.84% 380 2.32% 182 4.94% 388
Mariposa 32.78% 2,126 57.36% 3,720 3.32% 215 2.00% 130 4.53% 294
Tehama 32.48% 5,000 58.54% 9,010 2.35% 361 1.65% 254 4.98% 767
Siskiyou 31.87% 4,972 58.40% 9,112 2.80% 437 2.47% 386 4.46% 696
Lassen 31.57% 2,429 58.64% 4,512 2.01% 155 2.16% 166 5.61% 432
Butte 31.63% 19,437 53.22% 32,706 9.70% 5,963 1.71% 1,050 3.74% 2,301
Shasta 31.49% 15,292 58.95% 28,625 2.64% 1,283 1.94% 942 4.98% 2,417
Madera 31.40% 8,217 61.13% 15,998 1.98% 517 1.98% 517 3.52% 920
Sutter 29.85% 5,782 62.08% 12,024 3.20% 620 1.25% 242 3.62% 702
Yuba 29.71% 3,447 59.50% 6,904 3.69% 428 2.15% 249 4.96% 575
Placer 29.66% 28,495 61.03% 58,623 4.85% 4,657 1.56% 1,500 2.90% 2,781
El Dorado 29.43% 16,402 59.03% 32,898 6.13% 3,418 1.92% 1,072 3.48% 1,939
Sierra 29.21% 420 55.98% 805 5.01% 72 4.66% 67 5.15% 74
Colusa 27.17% 1,243 65.49% 2,996 2.86% 131 1.05% 48 3.43% 157
Modoc 26.62% 900 63.92% 2,161 1.60% 54 1.98% 67 5.89% 199
Glenn 25.86% 1,685 65.49% 4,268 2.87% 187 1.47% 96 4.31% 281

References[edit]

  1. ^ 'Fight' seen in California's governor's race
  2. ^ Riordan has edge on Davis in polls Governor's mixed reviews seen to benefit challenger
  3. ^ Davis ad assails Riordan GOP rival's stand on abortion rights challenged
  4. ^ Riordan silent on abortion flap Davis ad hits GOP governor hopeful for giving to thousands to anti-choice groups
  5. ^ a b Top GOP governor candidates trade attacks Surveys show Simon closing in on Riordan's once imposing primary lead
  6. ^ Kevin Cooper Awaits DNA Test Results
  7. ^ A man for all reasons
  8. ^ Asseo, Laurie. "Court nixes 'blanket' primaries." Salon News. June 26, 2000. Associated Press writer. Accessed on August 13, 2007. http://www.salon.com/politics/2000/06/26/blanket/.
  9. ^ Maisel, Sandy. "Closing the Door on Moderation, One Seat at a Time." The Jewish Daily Forward. Friday, August 18, 2006. Accessed on August 13, 2007. http://www.forward.com/articles/1076/.
  10. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/2002/03/06/us/novice-wins-gop-primary-for-governor-of-california.html
  11. ^ http://sos.ca.gov/elections/sov/2002_primary/gov.pdf
  12. ^ Davis, Simon heartily disliked Voter disenchantment has soared to unprecedented level, poll says
  13. ^ Economist.com. "Gray Davis." http://www.economist.com/research/backgrounders/displaybackgrounder.cfm?bg=1922064
  14. ^ a b Carla Marinucci, Lynda Gledhill, Chronicle Staff Writers. "Davis turns up heat as Simon pares down: New ads roast GOP rival as he trims staff." The San Francisco Chronicle. Friday, August 16, 2002. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2002/08/16/MN76308.DTL
  15. ^ Simon's attack on Davis backfires 'Evidence' photo isn't clear proof of illegal donation
  16. ^ Cal Votes 2002
  17. ^ Polling in the Governor's Race in California
  18. ^ Davis ekes out 7-point lead over Simon Field Poll shows voters against hopeful rather than for governor
  19. ^ NEWS ANALYSIS Big challenges ahead for not-exactly-popular incumbent

External links[edit]