A Last Minute Guide for California Voters
Today is election day.
All registered voters in California now receive ballots in the mail for all elections, so you may have submitted yours a few weeks ago. As of Monday evening, more than five million Californians had already done so, according to Political Data Inc.
But today is the deadline for everyone else to cast their vote.
In these elections, Californians elect a number of statewide leaders, including the governor and attorney general, as well as members of Congress, who may determine whether Republicans will take control of the House. We also decide whether to guarantees the right to abortion in the Constitution of our country and if the state bans flavored tobacco productsamong other ballot proposals.
A number of the state’s largest cities, including San Jose and Oakland, are as well electing new mayors. In Los Angeles, billionaire developer Rick Caruso and longtime Rep. Karen Bass are stepping in for Mayor Eric Garcetti — and the race seems to be in a dead heat right now, my colleague Shawn Hubler reports.
Whoever gets the job to lead Los Angeles, America’s second-largest city, will be tasked with alleviating the region’s rising homelessness and crime rates, as well as “almost clinical depression” among nearly every demographic of voters, Darry A. Sragow, a Democratic a political consultant, he told Sean. “The next mayor of Los Angeles is going to inherit an incredible mess,” Sragow said.
No matter which state you’re voting in, we’ve got answers to all your last-minute election questions.
How can I vote in the elections?
All registered and active voters in California should have received a ballot by mail last month. You can mail that ballot or drop it in a box. You can also vote in person.
Ballots returned by mail must be postmarked by November 8. Ballots returned in a secure box must be deposited by 8:00 PM on November 8.
What’s on my ballot?
Many of the races may be familiar if you voted in the June primary. Those elections narrowed the field for each contest to the top two candidates. You can view the primary results here.
More about California
- Jaywalking Law: California had one of the strictest jaywalking laws in the country. Starting January 1, that will no longer be the case.
- Bullet Train to Nowhere: Building the nation’s high-speed rail system, America’s most ambitious infrastructure project, became a multi-billion dollar nightmare.
- A A destroyed piece of black history: Lincoln Heights — a historically black community in a predominantly white, rural county in Northern California — has survived for decades. Then there was a fire in Mlin.
- Moratorium on storage: As warehouse construction unfolds across the country, residents in rural and urban communities have pulled back. In California’s Inland Empire, anger turned into widespread action.
In today’s election, you will vote for:
Seven proposals for voting. You can read our guide to this year’s initiativescovering issues including dialysis clinics, sports betting and reproductive rights.
Races for US Senate, Governor, Secretary of State, Comptroller, Treasurer, Attorney General, Insurance Commissioner, State Board of Equalization, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, and State Supreme Court Justice.
Depending on where you live, you will be too electing a representative in Congress, state senator and member of the state assembly. Hundreds of thousands of Californians were moved into new election districts recent redistrictingbut you can check your current district with this CalMatters tool.
Most Californians will also see local races on their ballots. Los Angeles County voters, for example, did deciding whether to keep Alex Villanuevaone of the most polarizing figures in California, as their sheriff.
How can I check if my ballot has been counted?
Track when your ballot has been mailed, received and counted california.ballottrax.net/voter.
Where can I find election results?
Follow the election results here. California won’t begin releasing results until after the polls close at 8 p.m. PT.
How long will it take to get the results?
Although million Californians have already returned their ballots, county officials cannot begin counting them until the polls close tonight. Before that, they can process early ballots and prepare them for counting.
Vote counting is usually slow in California because there are so many voters. And there is a seven-day window after the election to allow ballots postmarked on November 8 to arrive. But early returns should help streamline the count, and counties must begin reporting results to states within two hours of polls closing.
What do you get?
For $1.4 million: A 1920 bungalow in Los Angeles, a 1909 Craftsman home in Oakland, and a two-bedroom cottage in Redondo Beach.
Where we travel
Today’s tip comes from Mary Ann Mitchell, who recommends a state park in a Northern California ghost town:
“Living in California, picking one place is impossible because there are so many great places to explore. But it’s a unique place to see Bodie State Historic Park off Interstate 395. First, the drive there through the mountains and rivers is wonderful. At the turnoff to Bodie, the dirt road winds up the hills and suddenly this preserved old town appears. It is interesting to independently tour the buildings and learn about the people who lived there during the mining glory days. There is also a cemetery with a lot of history and a nice little picnic area, so bring your lunch and relax. California is steeped in history.”
Tell us about your favorite places in California. Email your suggestions [email protected]. We will be sharing more in future editions of the newsletter.
Have you visited any of the tourist destinations we recommended in the newsletter? Send us a few lines about your trip and a photo!
We would like to share them in future editions of the newsletter. Email us at [email protected]. Please include your name and city where you live.
And before you go, some good news
The Sonoma Botanical Garden, known for its Asian influence, opened its newest trail to the public over the weekend — and it’s all about California.
The wheelchair-accessible trail is just under half a mile and takes hikers past a garden vineyard, then past oak trees and next to a stream, The Sonoma Index-Tribune reports. From the trail’s steepest point, you can see them all together, a perfect picture of Sonoma’s local native nature.
Thanks for reading. I’ll be back tomorrow. — Soumya
PS Here today’s Mini Crossword.
Briana Scalia and Steven Moity contributed to California Today. You can reach the team at [email protected].
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