CVF in the News

By Taylor Helmes, Action News Now, October 30, 2023


The state said it will monitor Shasta County ahead of the November 7th special election. 

Shasta County Board of Supervisors Chairman Patrick Jones said he expected a letter like this, but Shasta County Registrar of Voters Cathy Darling Allen said this letter is special. 

The Secretary of State Shirley Weber sent the letter to the Board of Supervisors and Registrar of Voters on October 27th.

Jones called this an overreach by the state against the county and that he is seeking out legal firms to take this matter to court. He said he is more focused on the primary election in March 2024, not the special election next week. 

By Lynn LA, CAL Matters, October 30, 2023


Normally an election to set up a fire district and fill one school board seat in a county with just 112,000 registered voters wouldn’t get statewide attention. 

But the Nov. 7 election in Shasta County is far from normal and will be closely watched — including by the Secretary of State’s office. 

That county’s Board of Supervisors has been embroiled in a series of battles between its conservative and more moderate members — all of whom are Republican. In January, the board voted 3-2 to cancel its contract with Dominion Voting for ballot-counting machines, which were the focus of unproven allegations about election fraud. The cancellation has prompted outcry at board meetings and a recall effort against Supervisor Kevin Crye, who recall proponents say was the swing vote in the decision.

By Annelise Pierce, Shasta Scout, October 29, 2023


California’s Secretary of State, Shirley Weber, has responded to a letter sent last week by a group of nonprofit, nonpartisan voting rights advocates by issuing a stern warning to Shasta County officials. Comply with new state law AB 969, which forbids hand counting in jurisdictions with more than 1,000 registered voters, Weber wrote, or be ready for her office to take any actions necessary to ensure the county does so.

As California Secretary of State, Weber is the state’s chief election officer, tasked with overseeing the elections process statewide. She is responding in no uncertain terms to recent claims by Shasta County Board Chair Patrick Jones that AB 969 might not apply in Shasta County because the decision to hand count votes locally was made months before the bill was created.

By Jenavieve Hatch, The Sacramento Bee, October 27, 2023


A nonpartisan coalition of voting rights advocates has asked the California Secretary of State’s o!ce to monitor upcoming elections in Shasta County
because of concerns about safety and the spread of misinformation.

In a letter sent to Secretary of State Shirley Weber on Tuesday, members of six voting rights groups called for an “urgent, decisive, and sustained response from
your once.”

Representatives from ACLU Northern California, the League of Women Voters, Disability Rights California, Verified Voting, California Common Cause, and the California Voter Foundation cite three reasons that Shasta County needs the state to provide extra election monitors in the November 2023 and March 2024 elections.

By Ashley Gardner, KRCR, October 26, 2023


Several nonprofit voter advocacy groups have reached out to the California Secretary of State to ask Dr. Shirley Weber to monitor and support upcoming elections in Shasta County due to recent controversies over voting equipment and ballot counting. 

In a joint letter sent to California's chief elections officer on October 24, California Voter Foundation along with the ACLU of Northern California, California Common Cause, Disability Rights California, League of Women Voters of California and Verified Voting called upon Secretary Weber to take several actions in response to "grave concerns, which we believe call for urgent, decisive, and sustained response from your office."

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By David Benda and Damon Arthur, Record Searchlight, October 26, 2023


Six nonprofit, nonpartisan voter advocacy groups have sent a letter to Secretary of State Shirley Weber requesting that she take action because they have “grave” concerns about
Shasta County’s upcoming Nov. 7 special election.

It's the latest chapter in a potential legal battle that would pit Shasta County against the state over tallying votes.

The nonprofit groups are asking that Weber's office, among other things, monitor the election to make sure the county is following the law and give Shasta County Registrar of
Voters Cathy Darling Allen any help she requests.

The letter also was sent to Gov. Gavin Newsom, Attorney General Rob Bonta, Shasta County's five supervisors and Darling Allen.

By Annelise Pierce, Shasta Scout, October 26, 2023


Six nonprofit voting rights advocacy groups have formally requested California’s Secretary of State, Shirley Weber, to provide monitoring and support for Shasta County’s upcoming elections. Among other requests, they’re asking her to deploy in-person monitoring of the local elections process both during the November 2023 and March 2024 elections.

Intervention by Weber’s office, the advocates write, could have “tremendous benefits . . . not only for the citizens of Shasta County but for all of the people who are watching these events unfold.”

By Sameea Kamal, CalMatters, October 18, 2023


For years, Republicans have railed against “ballot harvesting” as an underhanded tactic by Democrats to win elections.  

But for the 2024 election, the California GOP is going big on collecting ballots from voters and dropping them off at election offices or polling places, which is legal in California, with some conditions.  

In part, it’s a reflection of political reality: With a few exceptions, the Republican Party has been struggling. On top of Democratic majorities in the Legislature since 1996, no Republican has been elected statewide office since 2006. And since the COVID-19 pandemic, California has sent mail ballots to every registered voter, making it easier for people to cast their ballots earlier and not just at polling places on Election Day.

By David Benda, Redding Record Searchlight, October 12, 2023


Will Shasta County get special dispensation from a new California law that essentially bans tallying votes by hand except in the tiniest towns?

Patrick Jones, who chairs the Shasta County Board of Supervisors, insists that votes will be counted by hand and has threatened litigation if the state tries to stop the county by invoking the provisions of AB 969.

Jones has suggested that because the county developed a hand-count system that the Secretary of State reviewed before AB 969 became law, it should go ahead with its plan.

The new law bans the manual counting of ballots in regular elections with more than 1,000 registered voters and in special elections with more than 5,000 registered voters.

There is a special election scheduled for Nov. 7 in Shasta County. Ballots and voter information guides have been mailed to eligible voters.

By Sameea Kamal, CalMatters, September 20, 2023


The 2024 primary election is just six months away, and, thanks to a series of measures over the last few years, the process will look a little different for voters. 

For one, it’s the first presidential primary in which everyone can vote by mail. Because California’s top-two primary system — in which the two top vote-getters regardless of party move on to the November general election — doesn’t apply to presidential primaries, voters registered as Democrats or Republicans will receive a two-part ballot: the first includes the presidential candidates, and the second lists all the other races and measures.