VIDEO: Oakland mayor recall effort underway

OAKLAND (KRON)—There is an aggressive campaign Sunday night to recall Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf.

The group says Schaaf has been too closely tied with the troubled police department since her first day in office.

KRON4’s Spencer Blake was at Oakland City Hall, where the recall signatures started coming in Sunday.

It was certainly a small turnout at city hall, but the Anti Police-Terror Project is just beginning its effort to get a special recall election set up for early next year.

Meanwhile, Mayor Schaaf is defending her record, and focusing on one main reason why she feels a recall isn’t worthwhile.

These people represent core leadership of the Anti Police-Terror Project or APTP and they want Mayor Libby Schaaf out of office.

“At this point it’s hard to list just one reason, right? We’d have to go back all the way to her first day in office,” said APTP co-founder Cat Brooks.

On the recall petition, the group lists nine things the mayor has or hasn’t done that qualify her for removal from office.

They range from closed job centers, to civil rights violations, to Oakland’s housing crisis.

“Her response to the housing and rental crisis in this city that is pushing black and brown people out of the city at alarming rates has been inept at most, disgusting at the least,” Brooks said.

They also say she’s mishandled the police department’s transition through resignations and reform amid its nationally-publicized sex scandal.

But Schaaf, speaking to KRON4 at a Raiders game Sunday, says things have been getting better.

“Oakland had been making tremendous progress in both safety and building community trust,” Schaaf said.

She also says a recall hurts taxpayers.

“It is important that people recognize that a recall would cost the taxpayers of Oakland $3.4 million to hold a special election,” Schaaf said.

This was just day one of putting pen to paper for the petition.

Volunteers canvassed a few different areas of town with varying success.

“I came back with a full page of signatures, and my cohort came back with two and a half full pages of signatures,” said volunteer canvasser Deb Goodman. “It was great conversations with people in the community.”

That’s just a small dent in the number of signatures they’ll need to actually get a recall on the ballot.

APTP is probably going to need a bigger presence than this if it plans to gather 33,000 signatures in four months.

If they get enough and they’re all verified, there would be a special election, most likely in February.

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