Larry Elder's Chances of Replacing Gavin Newsom in California Recall Election

Conservative radio host Larry Elder appears on track to win the most votes of the 46 candidates running to replace Governor Gavin Newsom in the California recall election on September.

Elder, who is running as a Republican, looks like he'll miss out on the state's top job, however. Bookmakers Betfair, which operates the world's largest online betting exchange, told Newsweek that Elder's odds of replacing Newsom stand at 8/1.

This means if a person bets $1 on Elder to replace Newsom in this election and he succeeds, they would win $8. Those numbers suggest the prospect remains unlikely.

A Betfair spokesperson told Newsweek that Elder's odds of winning the most votes on the replacement ballot are 1/50.

Based on these odds, Elder is almost certain to place first among the replacement candidates, a result which is also borne out in recent polling.

But Elder's likely victory on the replacement ballot will not be enough to land him the governor's job.

The recall election has two parts. First, voters are asked if they want to recall Newsom. If 50 percent of voters choose to remove the governor, he will lose his position and then the replacement ballot comes into play.

In the event that Newsom is successfully recalled, the candidate who wins the most votes on the replacement list will become the next governor of California. Newsom cannot run as his own replacement and California Democrats have not nominated an official backup candidate.

Elder could theoretically become governor if he wins more votes than the next most successful candidate but only if Newsom, a Democrat, is removed from office. There is no requirement for the governor's replacement to win a certain percentage of the vote. Both betting odds and recent polls suggest Newsom will survive the recall effort, however.

Newsom's odds of beating the recall have also improved in the last week and his odds of being recalled were 4/1 as of Sunday, September 12. The governor's odds of surviving the recall effort stood at 1/8, meaning it is highly likely he will remain in office.

Sunday's odds represented a slight decline on those offered on Saturday when Betfair was giving odds of 1/18 on Newsom staying in office and 6/1 on him being removed. However, Sunday's figure was still an improvement on odds of 2/9 in favor of Newsom beating the recall that Betfair was offering earlier this week.

Recent polling has also indicated that Newsom will beat the recall and that Elder is leading among the 46 replacement candidates. A Spectrum News/Ipsos poll, which was released on Wednesday, showed the governor enjoying 58 percent favorability among registered California voters. By contrast, Elder was viewed favorably by 26 percent of voters in the poll.

Larry Elder Speaks to Supporters
Republican gubernatorial candidate Larry Elder speaks to supporters during an Asian Rally for Yes Recall at the Asian Garden Mall in Little Saigon, Westminster, California, on September 4, 2021. Bookmakers' odds suggest Elder will triumph among the replacement candidates but Governor Gavin Newsom will remain in office. RINGO CHIU/AFP/Getty Images