The California gubernatorial recall election takes place today.
Voters will decide whether to replace incumbent Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom. If ‘yes’ prevails, the next governor is chosen on the same ballot, with Republican contenders including frontrunner radio talk show host Larry Elder, television personality and former athlete Caitlyn Jenner, and California State Rep. Kevin Kiley.
The election was triggered after organizers gathered more than the required 1.5 million petition signatures, largely motivated by opposition to restrictions Gov. Newsom put in place to combat the pandemic.
One of the media’s “new” priorities in covering Election Night is to be transparent about the methods they use to characterize and analyze results.
The most important point about Election Night language is that they plan to use the word “estimate” (both the noun and the verb) when reporting on the outcome of a race.
Media outlets will also use the words “project” and “projection”.
They do NOT “call” races, nor do they declare winners. They also will draw a distinction between races that they know are too close to estimate and races for which we do not have enough information.
Contact Jay Allen at [email protected]