California officials said the recall efforts for State Governor Gavin Newsom achieved their goal of forcing a special election which will be held later this year.

The Republican-backed recall for Democrat Newsom is only the second in the history of California. The first was in 2003 that placed Arnold Schwarzenegger in his political position. The special election is also only the fourth in the history of the United States.

Newsom’s Recall

California’s Secretary of State Shirley Weber said that as of Monday, “the requisite number of valid signatures has been reported to our office to initiate the recall of Governor Gavin Newsom.”

The state allows legal voters to hold a referendum to replace the seated governor if they are able to gather signatures equal to at least 12% of the previous voters. The effort has gained more than 1.6 million verified signatures in response to Newsom’s alleged mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic.

If the special election continues, voters will be required to decide whether or not Newsom should stay as California governor or who they want to replace him with. Caitlyn Jenner is among the list of potential candidates to replace Newsom.

The last special election in California in 2003 drew eyes across the world. The list of candidates included actor Arnold Schwarzenegger, a porn actress, and late Hustler publisher, Larry Flynt.

Despite the recall efforts’ overwhelming support, Newsom is unlikely to lose the special election. California is one of the most Democratic states in the United States in the last 20 years, Inquirer reported.