State Sen. Josh Newman of Fullerton is facing a possible recall more than a year after he voted with fellow Democrats to increase California's gas tax in order to bring in the funds needed to improve the state’s infrastructure.
Senate Bill No. 1 increased vehicle fees, raised the gas tax by 12 cents per gallon and hiked up the diesel fuel tax by 20 cents per gallon to raise billions of dollars annually for road and bridge repairs.
“I voted for the measure in April of last year because, the 20 years prior to my arriving here, the state had deliberately neglected its infrastructure,” Newman told KTLA.
Though he signed the measure alongside other democratic leaders, Newman was selected as the sole target by those behind the recall campaign, which is headed by former San Diego City Council member Carl DeMaio, the Los Angeles Times reported.
According to the newspaper, DeMaio considered Newman to be the “weakest member of the state Senate.”
“This is an abuse of the process," Newman said.
He added that the proponents of the recall “are exploiting a loophole in the process to get through a recall election what they didn't get through the fair election.”
If Newman is recalled, it would increase the chances of the Democrats losing their two-thirds supermajority in the state senate.
The June 5 ballot will feature three Republican and three Democratic contenders for Newman's seat.