An OC Democrat was ousted over his gas tax vote. Is it a sign a broader repeal will pass in November?

FILE: Judy Rees signals drivers into a Mobil gas station near I-5 in Encinitas to get them to sign a petition to repeal the state's new gas tax.
FILE: Judy Rees signals drivers into a Mobil gas station near I-5 in Encinitas to get them to sign a petition to repeal the state's new gas tax.
Sharon McNary/KPCC

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Democratic state Senator Josh Newman was ousted from an Orange County district that’s typically red Tuesday night. Voters recalled him over his support for raising the gas tax to fund billions in transportation projects. 

As Republican-backers hoped, popular anger over the tax hike proved to be an animating issue for voters. And it's poised to do the same in the November general election, when voters will decide whether to repeal Senate Bill 1, the legislation which increased driver fees.

But observers note there are key differences between primary voters in a traditionally conservative Orange County district and those likely to turn out statewide in the fall. Still, recent polling shows a narrow majority of voters support recalling the gas tax increase.