2022 Midterm Elections: What You Need to Know to Vote in California

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Voters will have the chance to vote in critical races in the Golden State during the Mid-Terms 2022 coming November 8.

What is the deadline to register to vote?

With less than a fortnight left before the election, those still seeking to register must complete the voter registration form on the day. Once this form has been submitted, those wishing to vote must request a ballot at the nearest county election office or polling station. Any remaining questions regarding the registration process should be directed to the County Elections Office.

Will I receive a voting email?

All registered voters in the state should have received a ballot that can be completed and returned by mail or deposited in a collection box. However, those who registered more recently may not receive their ballot and the time and must identify their polling station to vote.

Ballots must be postmarked on election day or delivered to a drop box or brought to a polling place by 8:00 p.m. on election day.

California leadership races

Governor

Lieutenant Governor

Treasurer

Controller

Insurance Commissioner

Federal Elections

Thanks to cantonment, all congressional races are in new districts. This can create challenges for incumbents who represent part of their former district, but also new residents who may not be as familiar with their work and political positions.

U.S. Senate Special and Normal Election

A special election to fill Vice President Kamala Harris’ seat through 2022 will be held alongside a normal Senate race to determine who will represent the state from January 2023 for the next six years.

When President Biden won the 2020 election, Governor Gavin Newsom nominated Alex Padilla to fill the seat vacated by Vice President Kamala Harris. Padilla, who was previously California Secretary of Statee, should win both races. Padilla takes on Republican challenger and attorney Mark P. Meuser.

Voting initiatives

There are a total of six ballot initiatives that residents will have the opportunity to vote on.

Proposition 1: Constitutional right to reproductive freedom

California voters have the option of adding a amendment enshrining the right to abortion in the state constitution. A YES vote would establish the right to abortion and the use of contraceptives in the state constitution, while a NO vote would make no changes to the document. The initiative is supported by the California Democratic Party as well as Planned Parenthood and is opposed by the California Republican Party.

Proposition 26: Allow in-person roulette, dice games and sports betting on tribal lands.

There are a few proposals on the ballot this year that relate to state gambling laws.

Prop 26 would be make sports betting legal at all four state racetracks as well as tribal casinos. In addition to sports betting, tribal casinos could also offer roulette and other dice games, which are currently prohibited by state law. A YES vote allows these changes to be made, while a NO vote would maintain the gambling laws.

Support for Prop 26 lies with the political party, with the California Democratic Party endorsing the measure, believing it could be a way to increase tribal sufficiency.

The California Republican Party, is joined by an unlikely ally in its opposition to Prop 26, Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, as well as various local humanitarian societies. Animal rights activists see Proposition 26 as a way to breathe new life into the decaying horse racing industry and oppose any effort to make racing more profitable.

Prop 27: Allows online and mobile sports betting outside of tribal lands

This is the second of two proposals related to the game.

In 2018, the US Supreme Court gave states the power to determine their own online sports betting laws.. Soon, many states enacted laws allowing online sports betting as a way to raise their own tax revenue.

Two of the largest online sports betting platforms, Draft Kings and FanDuelhave spent millions in the campaign to legalize betting in the Golden State.

The move to legalize sports betting for twenties and older outside tribal lands would boost revenue with “those offering online sports betting would be required to pay the state a share of the sports bets made.”

Unlike Proposition 26, where Democrats and Republicans have differing opinions, on Proposition 27, both sides disagree that the measure should be approved by voters. The only organizations that approve of its implementation are DraftKings, FanDuel, Major League Baseball and three native tribes (about 50 more oppose the proposal).

Prop 28: Provides additional funding for arts and music education in public schools

Prop 28 moves away from the game world and instead focuses on funding for arts and music programs in K-12 schools.

If approved, voters would authorize the state to increase education funding by one percent (funds could only be used for arts and music education) from the state’s general fund . which has a surplus of about $100 billion. Current state law requires that all students, regardless of district, receive an arts education, but the quality can vary widely, with some districts allocating significantly more money to these programs. Prop 28 funds would be distributed to districts that lack the resources to improve their arts and music programs, making access to these subjects more equitable across the state.

A YES vote means someone approves of this funding increase, while a NO vote would keep the funding at its current level.

Proposal 28 was approved by the California Democratic Party and, curiously, there is no organization that opposed the measure.

Prop 29: Requires Licensed Medical Professional On-Site at Kidney Dialysis Clinics and Establishes Other State Requirements

Proposal 29, which deals with the staffing of kidney dialysis clinics, is similar to those that have been voted against in 2018 and 2020. This measure would require clinics to have at least one doctor, nurse practitioner or medical aide on site when treatments are administered.

Proponents believe the change could reduce patient hospitalizations, while those opposed believe that increased staffing is an unnecessary cost that could lead to the closure of many private dialysis clinics.

The YES campaign is supported by the Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers Westthe California Federation of Labor and the California Democratic Party.

The NO campaign was funded by private dialysis companies like DeVita and Fresenius Medical Careand also found support from the California Republican Party, the American Nurses Association, and the California Medical Association.

Prop 30: Provides funding for programs to reduce air pollution and prevent wildfires by raising personal income taxes by more than $2 million

Electric cars continue to grow in popularity in the Golden State and Prop 30 would drive demand for clean cars by imposing a 1.75% increase in income tax on those earning more than $2 million a year. The funds raised, which the state estimates could total $4.5 billion, would be used to offer discounts to lower and middle class families buying electric cars and expand charging infrastructure. About a quarter of revenues would also be used to hire and train hunters which is desperately needed as the fire season gets longer and longer.

The base of support for this proposal is a bit strange. While the proposal has been endorsed by the California Democratic Party, Governor Gavin Newsom opposes the tax hike, as well as the state’s Republican Party as well as the California Teachers Association.

Prop 31: Referendum on the 2020 law that would ban the retail sale of certain flavored tobacco products

The last and final proposal on this year’s ballot concerns state laws on the availability of certain tobacco products. Proposition 31 was placed on the ballot after opposition to the implementing a state law banning the marketing of tobacco products with flavors appealing to children, including mango and cotton candy. A YES vote implies that a voter would like to see these products banned, while a NO vote means they want to overturn the 2020 law and allow the sale of these products.

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