So why is this even a contest? Well, it may not turn out to be. The “no” on the recall has been polling around 60 percent, well above what Newsom needs to stay in office and face voters again in November 2022. It was close for a while, perhaps because few Democrats had tuned in, but also because Newsom, for all his polish, has difficulty breaking through with voters on a personal level. He is popular, just not beloved.