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Californians periodically capture the attention of the nation with their dynamic political activities. In 2003, Californians once again managed to command the national spotlight when California became only the second state in the union to recall its governor. California’s eccentric political atmosphere has widely been recognized, but few observers imagined that Californians would attempt to replace a governor midterm, and even fewer imagined that they would succeed. The events that culminated in the October 2003 recall of Gray Davis and the subsequent election of Arnold Schwarzenegger came to symbolize the seemingly unstable political climate in California. The recall election, however, represented much more. The recall election illustrated to the American public how much power citizens can actually wield in a political system in which the electorate has direct control over the electoral mechanisms of government.