Ballot Box Basics for San Diegans: What You Need to Know About the 2016 California Primary

by on April 7, 2016 · 1 comment

in Culture, Election, Media, Ocean Beach, Politics, San Diego

vote smart buttonMassive Voter Turnout Expected

By Doug Porter

California’s June elections are looking to be like the OK Corral of presidential primary contests this year. With Senators Ted Cruz and Bernie Sanders both besting their party’s frontrunners by 13 points in Tuesday’s Wisconsin voting, the Golden State’s large lode of delegates is rapidly gaining in significance.

Better than 600,000 Californians have registered to vote online or updated their information in the last three months, says California Secretary of State Alex Padilla in a letter to Gov. Jerry Brown.

One unnamed campaign has reportedly requested 200,000 registration forms, according to Padilla, and he’s looking for an additional $32 million to handle predicted major surges in turnout for both the June 7 California primary and Nov. 8 general election.

From the Los Angeles Times:

Despite his victories in earlier state primaries, Trump lacks enough delegates to capture the Republican nomination outright, meaning California could decide the fate of the GOP race.

California’s 172 GOP delegates — 14% of the 1,237 required to win the nomination — will be chosen on the last big day of the voting calendar.

On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton has accumulated such a substantial delegate lead over rival Sen. Bernie Sanders that she remains the clear front-runner in the race.

Because Democrats allow decline-to-state voters to participate in their presidential primary, counties will need to have extra “crossover ballots” on hand at polling places, Padilla said. The GOP holds a closed primary, so anyone who wants to cast a ballot for one of the party’s three remaining presidential candidates must be a registered Republican.

The rest of the ballot — the Senate contest and congressional and local races — will still be for the “top two” candidates to advance to the general election.


  1. yogi_berra_quoteSan Diego City races allow candidates winning more than 50% of the vote in the primary to be declared the winner. Look for a fall ballot measure changing that rule to match up with the state’s method.
  2. Clinton’s lead is substantial. But she hasn’t been nominated yet.

The KPBS Midday Edition offered up a primer for San Diegans:

People who are registered members of political parties will be able to take part. But for nonpartisan voters, it’s a little more complicated.

The San Diego County Registrar of Voters sent out postcards to vote-by-mail non-partisan voters telling them their options if they want to vote in the presidential primary.

Voters who want to cast a ballot for Democratic, Libertarian or American Independent candidates must request a specific ballot by the deadline. Meanwhile, independent voters who want to participate in the Republican, Green or Peace and Freedom party primaries are required to reregister to vote. The deadline to make these changes is April 13.

The Basic Info Needed to Vote

voting old styleYou can register online: here. To find out if you are currently registered to vote, visit Check Status of Your Voter Registration.

Voter registration applications of the dead tree persuasion are available at any county elections office (In San Diego: 5600 Overland Ave, 92123), library, Department of Motor Vehicles offices, or U.S. post office.

VERY IMPORTANT NOTICE: In California, independent voters should register as “No Party Preference.” The American Independent Party is the leftovers of the George Wallace campaign.

In California, the deadline to register to vote for any election is 15 days before Election Day:

May 23 for the June 7th Primary
October 24 for the November 8 General election

You need to re-register to vote when:

  • You move to a new permanent residence,
  • You change your name, or
  • You change your political party choice.

For further information on where or how to vote visit this link.

The San Diego County Registrar of Voters is looking to hire staffing for the roughly 1500 polling places in the region.

The first date you can vote by mail is May 9th. May 31st is the last day county elections officials will accept any voter’s application for a vote-by-mail ballot.

What’s On the June Ballot

logo-vote-caRegistered voters receive two mailings referencing what will appear on their ballot.

The State Voter Information Guide, with information about federal candidates and statewide propositions.

A County Sample Ballot Booklet, with information about local candidates, ballot measures, and polling place locations. It also has candidate information on Congressional, State Senate, State Assembly, Other local offices and local Ballot Measures. These vary, depending on where you are registered to vote. The total candidate list (all 142 of them) for San Diego is here.

Statewide Choices;

  • President
  • U.S. Senate
  • Proposition 50

How Delegates for 2016 Party Conventions Are Picked

Republican Guide: 172 Total — 10 At-Large, 3 Republican National Committee, 159 by Congressional District (Winner take all)

Democratic Guide: 546 Total , 40 Alternates (Proportional)

Assorted Elections in San Diego County:

What appears on your ballot depends on where you are registered to vote.

  • drunkcongressman

    Unfortunate, the picture of Duncan Hunter vaping isn’t available. So here’s yer basic elected drunk, which is what you get when you don’t give a damn.

    United States House of Representatives: 49th, 50th, 51st, 52nd & 53rd Congressional Districts

  • California State Senate: 39th District
  • California State Assembly: 71st, 75th, 76th, 77th, 78th, 79th and 80th Districts
  • Superior Court Judges: Offices 1-12, 14-44
  • County Board of Education: Districts 1, 2, 4, 5
  • Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College Board: Seats 3, 4
  • San Diego Community College Board: Districts B, D
  • San Diego Unified School Board: Districts A, D, E
  • San Diego County Board of Supervisors: Districts 1, 2, 3
  • Chula Vista City Council: Seats 3, 4
  • City of San Diego; Mayor, City Attorney, Council Seats 1, 3, 5, 7, 9

City of San Diego Ballot Measures

  • A thru H: Updates to the City Charter
  • I: Minimum Wage/Earned Sick Days Referendum

(SDFP Overview, here)

Who Should I Vote For?

ballotxYou can stay on top of the SDFP coverage of the primary elections by clicking on the bright blue and red button on the upper right-hand side of any page on this site. Every story we post on the topic (and there will be a lot of them), with short introductions, will appear.

In the second week of May (ish), the SDFP will publish our 2016 Primary Progressive Voters Guide, with a summary of our coverage, pithy political pronouncements and basic information on the major candidates. And/Or you can click on the Subscribe Link at the bottom of this column.

Don’t look here for unbiased coverage. And don’t bother to complain about our overall lack of interest in right and center-right candidates. If you missed the words “progressive views” at the top of every page, we have no sympathy for you.

Local Republican Endorsements

Democratic Party Endorsements

(We will list other groups’ endorsements in our SDFP voters guide in May.)

On This Day: 1712 – The first slave revolt in the U.S. occurs at a slave market in New York City’s Wall Street area. Twenty-one Blacks were executed for killing nine Whites. The city responded by strengthening its slave codes. 1963 – The Kingsmen recorded their version of the song “Louie Louie.” 1965 – President Lyndon B. Johnson authorized the use of ground troops in combat operations in Vietnam.

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I read the Daily Fishwrap(s) so you don’t have to… Catch “the Starting Line” Monday thru Friday right here at San Diego Free Press (dot) org. Send your hate mail and ideas to DougPorter@SanDiegoFreePress.Org Check us out on Facebook and Twitter.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

tj April 10, 2016 at 1:07 pm

“Don’t look here for unbiased coverage.”

haha… or virtually anywhere else…

i appreciate the honesty….

thank you.


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