Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Sing Along to the Proposition Song!

Last week the California Voter Foundation debuted our new "Proposition Song" music video, now playing on YouTube. As a multimedia project, people tend to focus on the visuals and music, but the heart of the song is, of course, the lyrics.

So with the hope that you will truly be "singing along", below are the lyrics to this year's Proposition Song. A news release and information page with photos of the players are also available. Enjoy!

“The Proposition Song”
November 2012 Election
By Kim Alexander, California Voter Foundation,

Oh we’re having an election, November Six the day
Eleven propositions, come vote and have your say!
The first one is Prop 30, it’s backed by Gov’nr Brown
if passed, some taxes will go up so the budget gap goes down.

31 is also ‘bout the budget, its changes are not trifle
if it’s passed the budget goes from a one to two year cycle.
32 would make it hard for unions to raise their donations  
it also limits contributions from unions and corporations.

It’s the Proposition Song!
Let’s all be singing along!
Cuz the ballot is so darn long!

The next prop is about auto insurance, if passed 33
lets insurers base rates on your insurance history
If passed, 34 repeals the death penalty
Prop 35 makes more severe the crime of human trafficking

36 is also ‘bout criminals and how much time they’re given
revising the three strikes law so they spend less time in prison
37’s about food labels, if passed codifies
that foods be clearly labeled when genetically modified.

It’s the Proposition Song!
Let’s all be singing along!
Cuz the ballot is so darn long!

Prop. 38 is like Prop. 30, about budget and taxing rules
If passed it raises taxes to give more funding to the schools.
Energy programs would be supported if prop 39 passes
by making out of state corporations pay some more in taxes

Last we have Prop 40 the most difficult of all
Proponents tried to have political district maps recalled
but they lost a court battle and have given up the game
A yes vote on Prop 40 would keep districts all the same.

If you want more information, just log yourself online
There’s a whole lot more at calvoter-dot-org
We’re open all the time! 

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

California Vote-by-Mail period officially starts today, Oct. 9th

Today is the "official" launch of California's "Vote-by-Mail" balloting period, when counties begin mailing out ballots, and ballot pamphlets to voters, and voters can request vote-by-mail ballots.

I say "official" in quotes because technically it was yesterday, ("E-29" in election administration parlance) October 8, but that was Columbus Day and officially a federal and state holiday. No mail is delivered, so nothing can get sent out.

Some counties were open, some were closed, some were processing "counter ballots" where people can walk in and vote in person.

Last month when we were putting together the new California Online Voter Guide I was trying to figure out what date to put for "First Day to Request a Vote-by-Mail ballot". Was it the 8th or the 9th? I emailed my local registrar who informed me I was correct, it should technically be the 8th but is actually the 9th.

Why does this matter? It seems a lot of people are worrying about where their ballots and election materials are. The California Voter Foundation has received an unusually high number of queries from voters wondering why they have not received anything yet.

Fortunately there are tools online voters can use to verify registration or check the status of a vote-by-mail ballot. CVF's Directory of County Election Offices provides links to the county web sites where voters can not only look up their vote-by-mail ballot status, but also registration status, personalized ballot pamphlet, and polling place location. Some counties let voters request vote-by-mail ballots online too.

Whether counties provide any or all of these tools varies widely from county-to-county. As in so many areas of elections, these variations make it hard for people like me to explain clearly to California voters how to interact with our state's voting process.

But one thing is certain: starting today voters should watch their mailboxes for arriving county sample ballots and vote-by-mail ballots. If these election materials don't show up it's a good indication you are not registered at your current address. You can register online or on paper (forms are at most post offices) up until October 22.

Monday, October 1, 2012

New California Online Voter Guide debuts!

I'm pleased to announce the debut of the new California Online Voter Guide, a nonpartisan information resource for California voters produced and published by the California Voter Foundation. Please see more details from today's news release. And stay tuned...coming soon will be a new Proposition Song!