Don’t Neglect June Elections


Ben Klein

Voter registration deadline in California is May 21

Election day is fast approaching, with less than a month left for Californians to prepare for the first round of voting. Midterm year elections are often associated with November, but plenty of decisions are on the ballots much earlier. State and local propositions, as well as primary elections, are all voted on in June. It is vital that all eligible Californians are registered to vote by May 21 — fifteen days before the first round of voting on June 5.

Any citizen who is 18 or older by election day can register to vote, and minors 16 and older can pre-register to be eligible to vote on their birthday. The simplest way to do so is online with a social security number and driver’s license number or ID.

Registrees must provide identification information and a home address and may choose a party affiliation. Anyone who does not have a party preference can indicate so on the site but will not be eligible to vote in some primary elections. Voters can also register in person at a local DMV.

It’s possible to receive ballots by mail and vote without travelling to a polling station; from May 7 until May 29, Californians will be able to mail in their votes.

On Tuesday, June 5, polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Voters can find the nearest station by texting “Vote” to 468683.

With the logistics out of the way, what’s going to be on the ballots in June? First and foremost, the primaries.

California works on a “jungle primary” system, meaning voters of any affiliation can vote for candidates of any party. The top two candidates, regardless of party, will be up for election in November.

Primary elections will be held for local representative seats, California Senate and Assembly seats, and one Senate seat. Currently, Democrats hold a two thirds majority in the California legislature. Primary elections on June 5 can make or break that number.

Both statewide and local propositions will be on the ballots as well. Propositions 68, 69, 70, 71, and 72 apply to all of California, with assorted local propositions under each county. There are eight for the Los Altos area in Santa Clara County.

After the initial rounds of votes, a general election will be held on November 6 to decide the winners between the top two candidates for all seats, as well as California’s next governor. November is also the month of midterm elections — the next upcoming shot at tipping congress one way or the other. These have the potential to influence national politics, making voter participation on a local level all the more vital.