CVF in the News

More California Counties Moving To Voter's Choice Model

By Chris Nichols, Capital Public Radio, February 26, 2020

Excerpts:

More counties in California are moving away from neighborhood polling precincts during the March 3 primary in favor of vote centers, an expanding election model designed to boost voter participation. 

Though fewer in number than traditional polling locations, vote centers are open up to 10 days before the election and allow anyone registered in their county to vote in-person or drop off a mail-in ballot. 

The new model was established by the Voter’s Choice Act, which was signed into law in 2016. It allows counties to opt-in to the new system and requires them to send vote-by-mail ballots to all registered voters in their county. 

By John Myers and Matt Stiles, Los Angeles Times, February 24, 2020

Excerpts:

When Los Angeles County set out to build a new voting system from scratch more than a decade ago, election officials knew the challenges in serving an electorate larger than those found in any of 39 states.

But what they didn’t know was that their efforts were on a collision course with a series of statewide election changes and the most consequential presidential primary in modern California history. Should Angelenos not understand what to do or where to go, the effects could be felt both statewide and — in terms of the Democratic presidential race — across the country. 

“There’s a lot riding on this,” said Rick Hasen, an election law professor at UC Irvine. “Any time you’re making so many changes at once, people can lose confidence in the system.”

By Libby Denkmann, LAist, February 13, 2020

It's early, but a few presidential campaigns seeing the fundraising writing on the wall have "suspended" their quests for the Democratic nomination after dismal performances in New Hampshire. And clarity may be on the horizon: Super Tuesday brings primaries in a number of delegate behemoths — including California.

But the drama may not wait for the close of polls on March 3. In Los Angeles County, by far the largest jurisdiction in the country, voters will be navigating a gauntlet of changes to how they cast their ballots, including new locations and technology.

Interview with Beth Ruyak, Capital Public Radio, February 12, 2020

How are young people looking at the 2020 primaries and the general election? What motivates young voters to cast a vote?

These are the questions organizations all over the country are asking in doing outreach, specifically to young voters. Their focus is also on pre-registering young people to vote, as long as they will be 18 by Nov. 3. What strategies and tactics are these organizations using? Are they different in California?

Guests

  • California Voter Foundation Founder & President Kim Alexander
  • Associated Students Inc. at Sacramento State Civic Engagement Coordinator Savannah Mendoza
  • Associated Students Inc. at Sacramento State Board of Directors Director of Social Services & Interdisciplinary Studies Samantha Elizalde

Full Audio

By Alex Cohen, Spectrum 1 TV Los Angeles, February 7, 2020

 

CVF president Kim Alexander was interviewed by "Inside the Issues" host Alex Cohen for Spectrum TV 1 in Los Angeles regarding the county's new Voting Solutions for All People voting system. The interview was featured on Twitterspectrum1TV

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Wilson Walker, KPIX 5 San Francisco, February 7, 2020

Excerpt:

 The botched voting process in the Iowa caucuses has California officials reassuring voters ahead of the upcoming March 3rd primary.KA_KPIX_interview

Iowa Democrats say they have finally reported all the results from Mondays caucus, but some inconsistencies remain.

“Look, I’ve been hearing about it nonstop since Monday Night,” said California Secretary of State Alex Padilla. “What happened in Iowa? How do we know that’s not going to happen here in California?”

That Padilla feels the need to reassure voters here just reflects the scale of the fiasco in Iowa. Of course, this was not Iowa’s fault. The mess lands squarely in the lap of the Iowa Democratic Party.

“Well, as the state party chair, I have some level of empathy for my colleagues in Iowa,” says Rusty Hicks, Chairman of the California Democratic Party. He says he’s not worried about March 3rd.

“So our process is run by the Secretary of State,” said Hicks of the primary. “I have the utmost confidence that we will have a fair, accurate and complete count.”

What every Californian needs to know about voting in the March primary

By Wilson Walker, KPIX TV San Francisco, February 6, 2020

CVF's Kim Alexander was interviewed by KPIX TV's Wilson Walker and provided essential tips for Californians who are casting vote-by-mail ballots in the March 3, Presidential Primary election. Kim Alexander KPIX vote by mail tips

 

 

 

 

 

The concept behind mandatory voting isn't new. Australia and Belgium are often brought up in conversation as examples.

By Eric Escalante, ABC 10, February 5, 2020

Excerpt:

Every registered voter in California might be required to vote in an election if a North Bay assemblyman’s bill becomes law.

Asm. Marc Levine (D - Marin County) introduced Assembly Bill 2070 to the legislature on Tuesday, so it still has a long way to go. If the bill manages to go the distance, it would require every registered voter in the state to cast a ballot by mail or at a vote center beginning in 2022.

The Secretary of State would also be able to enforce the bill with "civil remedies" to maximize voter turnout.

"Democracy is not a spectator sport — it requires the active participation of all of its citizens," Levine said."California is a national leader on expanding voting rights to its citizens. Those rights come with a responsibility by registered voters to cast their ballot and make sure that their voice is heard by their government. 

"This is not a time to be complacent at the ballot box. My AB 2070 will ensure that the voices of all California voters are heard loud and clear."

Kim Alexander, president of the California Voter Foundation, said people will have strong feelings about the assemblymember's proposal.

"If nothing else, it will generate lively discussion about whether mandatory voting in California is a good idea or not," Alexander said. 

By Don Thompson, Associated Press, February 3, 2020

Excerpt:

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Millions of Californians have little or no choice when it comes to choosing a state legislator.

In 24 of the 100 districts on the ballot, only candidates from one party are running. And in 15 of those districts, the incumbent lawmaker is unopposed and all but assured of re-election.

In most of these districts the only party on the ballot is Democratic as the struggling Republican Party failed to even field a candidate. That leaves nearly 14½ million of California’s roughly 40 million people with no choice between major political parties in picking their state representative.

That’s good for the dominant political party and entrenched politicians, but bad for voters, said Mindy Romero, founder and director of the University of Southern California’s California Civic Engagement Project.

By Scott Shafer, National Public Radio's "Morning Edition", December 19, 2019

Transcript excerpt:

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: 

Tonight California receives a sign of its enlarged role in the presidential nominating process. The most populous state used to hold its primary at the end of the voting season, by which time party nominees were often decided. In 2020, California votes earlier. And today Los Angeles, Calif., will host a Democratic presidential debate. Seven candidates will be onstage.

Here's Scott Shafer from our member station KQED.

SCOTT SHAFER, BYLINE: Two years ago, frustrated by always being in the shadow of Iowa and New Hampshire, California State Senator Ricardo Lara introduced a bill to move up the state's presidential primary from June to March.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

RICARDO LARA: The Prime Time Primary bill would make us one of the first states to hold a presidential primary and ensure our state's voters are heard on the national stage.

SHAFER: The bill passed with bipartisan support and was signed into law. For decades, California has gone back and forth between holding its presidential primary in March and June with mixed results.

KIM ALEXANDER: We are 1 in 8 voters in the country, so we do want California to have a say.

SHAFER: Kim Alexander is president of the California Voter Foundation, a strong supporter of changing the primary date. She says it's now or never to have an impact, given that California isn't one of the few swing states in November.

ALEXANDER: If we want Californians to have a voice in deciding who the president is, we really have to focus on the primary.

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