The California governor was declared winner in the recall vote an hour before polls officially closed.
RELATED: California governor Gavin Newsom facing recall, explained
Gov. Gavin Newsom easily fended off a historic attempt to recall him from leading the nation's most populous state, an effort that threatened to shift California's role as a liberal trendsetter and would have sent shockwaves through the Democratic Party.
Newsom, a Democrat who had been heralded as a potential presidential contender, found himself at the center of the country's divisions over COVID-19 and mandates aiming to keep people safe. He was applauded for his work at the beginning of the pandemic, leading the first state to shut down. But after months of tight restrictions and public flubs, that same work helped ignite the effort that led to the fourth gubernatorial recall election in U.S. history.
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