SurveyUSA also added a new question this time, asking voters whether they plan to skip the second question on their ballots, which allows them to pick a replacement should Newsom be recalled. Newsom has asked supporters to do just that, and 28% of all respondents, including 43% of Democrats and 51% of recall opponents, say that's their plan. In addition, another 9% said they'd leave the question blank after reviewing the entire list of all 46 candidates (the poll was, as you might guess, conducted online).
The top preference of the remaining 63% of the sample is still conservative radio host Larry Elder, who takes 27% of the vote; everyone else is in single digits. That's also a huge turnaround from SurveyUSA's previous poll, which named just seven candidates and found little-known Democrat Kevin Paffrath leading Elder 27-23. However, Paffrath was the only Democrat on that abbreviated ballot. This time, when facing the entire field, he gets just 6%.
Meanwhile, Elder's newest ad features a cross-party endorsement from former Democratic state Senate Majority Leader Gloria Romero, who declares, "I believe in charter schools and school choice. So does Larry Elder. But not Gavin Newsom." Romero was last on the ballot in 2010 when she took a close third place in the crowded nonpartisan primary for state superintendent of public instruction; she went on to lead the state branch of the organization Democrats for Education Reform, an anti-teachers union outfit.
● KS-Gov: Attorney General Derek Schmidt earned endorsements from all three of Kansas' GOP House members, a development that came one day after former Gov. Jeff Colyer unexpectedly departed the race. One member of the trio, Rep. Tracey Mann, had been supporting Colyer, while fellow Reps. Jake LaTurner and Ron Estes hadn't taken sides until now. Schmidt is currently the only major Republican campaigning against Democratic incumbent Laura Kelly.
● VA-Gov, VA-LG, VA-AG: Monmouth's inaugural poll of the Old Dominion's gubernatorial race shows Democrat Terry McAuliffe leading Republican Glenn Youngkin 47-42, which is comparable to what other recent surveys have found. The school's downballot portion, though, finds Democrats with smaller leads than we've seen from most other pollsters: Hala Ayala edges out Republican Winsome Sears 43-42 in the race for lieutenant governor, while incumbent Mark Herring leads Republican Jason Miyares 45-43 for attorney general.
● MO-07: State Sen. Mike Moon announced this week that he would seek the Republican nod to succeed incumbent Billy Long, who is giving up this safely red southwest Missouri seat to run for the Senate. Moon competed in the 2010 GOP primary when the previous version of this seat was open and took just 4% of the vote in a race Long won with 37%; two years later, Moon again decided to square off against Long, but the freshman congressman beat him 60-22. Those scalding defeats were by no means the end of Moon's political career, though, as he won a 2013 special election to the state House and a promotion to the Senate last year.
Moon has established himself as a fervent anti-abortion crusader during his eight years in the legislature. This year, he pushed a bill that the Missouri Independent writes "would have redefined a fertilized egg as a person with all the constitutional rights of any other citizen and required police and the courts to 'affirmatively enforce' the Missouri constitution's due process clause which guarantees legal rights to people, effectively turning any attempt to terminate a pregnancy into murder."
Moon kicked off his third congressional campaign with more appeals to the far right by pledging to "punish the Chinese communists and [Anthony] Fauci for their lies about COVID."
● NH-01: Former TV reporter Gail Huff Brown told WMUR this week that she was considering seeking the GOP nomination to take on Democratic Rep. Chris Pappas, and an unnamed source close to her relayed that she plans to decide in the "not-too-distant future." Huff Brown is the wife of former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown, who moved with her to the Granite State months after his 2012 defeat at the hands of Elizabeth Warren and went on to lose a competitive 2014 race to Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen.
● NY-24: Navy veteran Francis Conole announced Tuesday that he would again seek the Democratic nomination to take on GOP Rep. John Katko in what is currently a competitive Syracuse-based seat. Conole campaigned for the nomination last year but lost the primary to 2018 nominee Dana Balter by a wide 63-37 margin. Katko went on to turn back Balter 53-43 even as Joe Biden was taking the seat 53-44, but he infuriated his party base months later by voting to impeach Donald Trump, who said in June that he'd help support a challenge to the incumbent in next year's primary. Making Katko's future even more uncertain, Democrats in the legislature could make his district bluer.
● TX-15: On Tuesday, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy threw his backing behind 2020 nominee Monica De La Cruz-Hernandez, who is making a second run at Democratic incumbent Vicente Gonzalez. De La Cruz-Hernandez, who lost that campaign by a shockingly close 51-48 margin, has yet to attract any serious primary opposition in a Rio Grande Valley constituency that the GOP will have the opportunity to gerrymander.
● Albuquerque, NM Mayor: Albuquerque City Clerk Ethan Watson announced on Monday that, as the result of a court order, he would hold a new hearing Wednesday to decide whether Bernalillo County Sheriff Manny Gonzales could receive more than $600,000 in public financing after all.
Watson said in July that he was denying the sheriff's application because of evidence submitted in two ethics investigations concerning Gonzales' campaign to unseat Mayor Tim Keller, a fellow Democrat. A state judge, though, ruled last week that the clerk had not given Gonzales the chance to answer the allegations and ordered Watson to either award the candidate the money or give him the opportunity to defend himself. Watson went with the latter option and said he would make a new decision by Friday.
In his letter Monday to Gonzales, Watson reiterated the allegations against the candidate. "The basis for this contemplated action," he wrote, "is evidence that you, as a candidate, your campaign's employees, and the designated representatives for whom you expressly accepted responsibility submitted materially false statements to the Office of the City Clerk, forged qualifying contributions to the Office of the City Clerk in your campaign to obtain public financing, and paid for the contributions of purported contributors."
Gonzales' team, as the Albuquerque Journal's Jessica Dyer wrote in July, has "confirmed that it turned in forged documentation," but has insisted that "forgeries are typical in campaigns and that the sheriff was not responsible for them."
● Boston, MA Mayor: Suffolk County Sheriff Steve Tompkins endorsed City Councilor Michelle Wu on Tuesday two weeks ahead of the nonpartisan primary.
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