San Francisco voters appear to have recalled District Attorney Chesa Boudin in Tuesday’s election, according to initial unofficial results.
The group Safer SF Without Boudin late last year had gathered tens of thousands of signatures to get the recall on the ballot, alleging that Boudin, a former San Francisco deputy public defender who had been elected district attorney in November 2019, was too lenient on repeat offenders and failed to prioritize public safety.
The decision went on the ballot as Proposition H, which had more than 60 percent of the city’s voters in favor of recalling Boudin with more than half of the city’s precincts reporting and nearly 117,000 votes counted as of late Tuesday night. If the recall is certified and Boudin is removed from office, Mayor London Breed would then appoint an interim district attorney.
Mary Jung, chair of the Safer SF Without Boudin campaign, declared victory in the recall effort in a statement following the initial results.
“Election results show that San Franciscans and Democrats of all stripes, from every neighborhood, want new leadership to manage a DA’s office that has been in chaos. San Franciscans want leadership that holds serious, violent, and repeat offenders accountable while never forgetting the rights of victims and their families,” Jung said.
“DA Boudin was made a scapegoat for a city facing numerous societal challenges, many of which existed before he took office, some of which were the result of the unprecedented stresses of the pandemic and almost all of which are beyond the ambit of a prosecutor’s reach or role.”Miriam Krinsky, Fair and Just Prosecution
Miriam Krinsky, executive director of the group Fair and Just Prosecution, which describes itself as a “national network of elected prosecutors working towards common-sense, compassionate criminal justice reforms,” said she was “disappointed” in the results.
“DA Boudin was made a scapegoat for a city facing numerous societal challenges, many of which existed before he took office, some of which were the result of the unprecedented stresses of the pandemic and almost all of which are beyond the ambit of a prosecutor’s reach or role,” Krinsky said.
The issue of recalls, especially following the failed 2021 recall of Gov. Gavin Newsom — the former mayor of San Francisco — prompted several members of the city’s Board of Supervisors to approve putting a measure on Tuesday’s ballot that would place additional limits on when recall elections can be held.
That measure, Proposition C, however, had less than 40 percent approval so looks set to fail, based on the initial unofficial results.
The measure sought to extend a ban on initiating recall petitions from six to 12 months after someone has assumed office, prohibit the submission of a recall petition if the subsequent election would be held within 12 months of a regularly scheduled election for that office, and disallow any interim officer appointed to a vacancy created by a recall to be a candidate in the subsequent election.