California Republicans say they have gathered more than enough signatures to put a proposal to repeal last year’s controversial gas tax on the November ballot — the latest sign that there is still life in the Golden State’s GOP.
The Los Angeles Times reports:
Republican activists said Tuesday that they have collected at least 830,000 signatures for an initiative to repeal recent increases in California’s gas tax and vehicle fees, more than enough to qualify the measure for the November ballot.
The activists need 585,407 signatures of registered voters to qualify the ballot measure.
Because signatures are still being processed and counted by the campaign, backers hope to have 900,000 by the time they begin turning them in to the counties on Friday, according to Carl DeMaio, a former San Diego City Council member and organizer of the drive.
The effort to repeal the regressive 12-cent-per-gallon gas tax that passed in 2017 — which was accompanied by a hike in vehicle registration fees — has been galvanizing Republican activists, especially in Southern California.
Already, they have mustered a vote to recall freshman State Sen. Josh Newman (D-Fullerton), who provided a deciding vote for the gas tax (as did other legislators, including Republicans).
In addition, grass-roots opposition to the state’s “sanctuary” laws has sparked a revolt across Orange and San Diego Counties, with several local governments — including the counties themselves — voting recently to oppose the laws and to support the federal lawsuit that is challenging them.
Republicans hope the energy of that effort will mobilize voters to counter the energy that Democrats are bringing to the polls through their so-called “Resistance” to President Donald Trump.
Last week, President Trump himself hailed the California “Revolution” against “sanctuary state” laws and policies.
Some evidence that Republican hopes may be fulfilled is already showing up in polls for the governor’s race, where recent surveys show businessman John Cox in second or third place.
Cox would need to finish second in the June 5 “jungle primary” to qualify for the general election. He will have to beat former Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa for the chance to face off against frontrunner Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named to Forward’s 50 “most influential” Jews in 2017. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.