MARTINEZ (KPIX) — California Governor Gavin Newsom could be facing a dead heat in the recall election next month, according to a newly released poll.

A recent Emerson College poll posed the question to 1,000 registered voters. Of those who responded, 48 percent were against the recall and 46 percent were for recalling Newsom.

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The Delta variant has the coronavirus concerns looming over California once again. The next few weeks are filled with uncertainties and another election impacted by the ongoing pandemic.

“Getting close. 42 days until Election Day,” said Contra Costa Clerk-Recorder Debi Cooper, who preparing to mail out ballots to every registered voter. “They’ll be going out on the 16th. Maybe a day or two earlier.”

The gears are already turning at local elections offices. Ballots are now being printed with polls showing the state roughly divided on the central issue.

“I will vote to not recall,” said Jorge Duran. “I think it’s unfair. It has no basis.”

“I think it needs to happen,” said recall supporter Brian Carrol. “Oh, totally. Get rid of him.”

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And as the vote draws closer, so does virus.

“As it turns out, COVID is re-emerging,” said longtime California political strategist Darry Sragow. “And now the fact is the governor is going to have to handle it in a way that reassures these Democratic voters.”

In other words, Governor Newsom needs the Democrats that elected him to show up in enough numbers to save his job. Forecasting turnout in this recall could be very difficult.

“[There are] differences from 2003,” explained Cooper. “We are mailing every voter a ballot, which we didn’t do before. That puts a ballot in every hand, whether they vote or not. That’s up to them.”

Every voter with a ballot, just for a recall, during a pandemic. It is an unprecedented election, with just two weeks before votes can be cast.

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“How close the recall turns out to be depends on exactly one thing and only one thing,” Sragow said. “And that is whether Democrats take the time to vote.”