California Voters Just Not Interested This Year

Remember the old saw about leading a horse to water but unable to make it drink?

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The horse, it’s assumed, just wasn’t interested and that’s an apt description of the nearly 22 million Californians who have been given ballots for today’s primary election.

Through Monday, data guru Paul Mitchell reports that just 14% of those ballots had been returned to local election officials for counting, indicating that voter turnout could drop below the current record-low of 25.17% set in the 2014 primary.

It’s not difficult to understand why. Primary elections mostly determine which candidates will face each other five months hence. This year’s primary is especially lackluster and its weak dynamics cannot compete with other matters preoccupying voters, from COVID-19 to skyrocketing gasoline prices and surges in crime.

In fact, there’s just one high-profile political contest that will be resolved today — whether San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin will be recalled for his policies that, critics say, are too lenient on lawbreakers.

Pre-election polls indicate that the recall could succeed and the election has attracted national media attention because of San Francisco’s reputation for leftish politics and the potential setback for the national criminal justice reform movement.

Aside from the Boudin recall, the most noteworthy contest is a three-way battle for Los Angeles mayor. Polls indicate that Congresswoman Karen Bass and businessman Rick Caruso are running neck-and-neck with Los Angeles City Councilman Kevin de León a distant third.

De León will probably end with single-digit support, but that likely will be enough to prevent either Bass or Caruso from gaining a majority and thus force a November runoff for the right to govern a city plagued by issues — homelessness, crime, traffic congestion, racial tension, economic torpor and political discord — that have bedeviled previous mayors.

That’s about it in terms of issues and contests that could motivate large numbers of voters to mail in their ballots. There are a few that interest political junkies, such as who will finish in the top two in some legislative and congressional districts. But the real games will be decided in November — whether California will play a role in the national duel for control of Congress, and the rivalry between progressives and moderates for control of the state Assembly.

Another factor that undercuts voter motivation in this primary is the lack of high-profile ballot measures.

For decades, California’s constitution declared that statewide initiative measures could appear only on a “general election” ballot, presumably the November election. In 1971, however, a young secretary of state named Jerry Brown decreed that measures could be placed on the primary ballot as well.

Three years later, Brown used his own ruling to place Proposition 9, a political reform measure, on the 1974 primary ballot — a major factor in his successful campaign for governor that year.

For the next four decades, primary election ballots included some of the state’s most far-reaching, hard-fought ballot measures that drew voters to the polls, including Proposition 13, the iconic tax limitation measure in 1978.

In 2011, however, Brown, once again governor, countermanded his own 1971 decree by signing legislation to once again confine initiative measures to the November general election ballot.

Click here to read the full article in CALMatters


  1. Really??? says

    What is sad is many of the middle of the road or right candidates would have had a good chance of winning when you look at the numbers voting….

    Our side did not show up.

  2. Wow. Maybe 50% of the voters will actually cast ballots in November. It is a telling indictment of how politically apathetic most people have become, yet whoever is elected will be making decisions that impact each of our lives on a daily basis. The L.A. mayoral race is Bass’s to lose. De Leon voters and the other fringe candidates’ voters will likely become her voters, not the evil entrepreneur Caruso’s. Caruso will be vilified and demonized every single day until November.

  3. Maria Mallegni says

    When people know all our elections are rigged, why would they show up to vote? You can deny or pretend it’s not that bad but the cat is out of the bag and we want justice. So don’t go writing articles blaming the voters for not showing up when the real problem is corruption from top to bottom in our election system. We know so don’t write articles blaming the voters for not showing up.

  4. If a certain %, say 60 to 70, of the legal voting age population does not vote than the election should be null and void. Not voting means rejection of whatever “they” are trying to put forth. Also note that legal voting age population includes those not registered to vote.

    • Kathy Farmer says

      Interesting thought. But then who would be in charge? You can’t force people to vote or to register.

      • You would have to start local and then build bridges with other localities. Look for natural leaders in your groups

  5. Stan Sexton says

    Newsom loves low turnout,. It means that this Davos Boy can enjoy the enthusiasm of his supporters: CALPERS, CALSTRS, George Soros, Zuckerberg, Reed Hastings and all his fellow Great Reset “Young Global Leaders” : Merkel, Bill Gates, Trudeau, Macron and many others who want to control the world.

  6. With California gas prices high and going higher with Newsom continuing to restrict the supply of crude oil to meet increasing demands for the products manufactured from oil, voter silence must be indicative of their support for Newsom’s efforts to INCREASE fuel prices further!

    The 5-minute video on The Looming Energy Catastrophe:
    is an educational energy literacy briefing that’s already been viewed more than 9,000 times.


    • I agree wholeheartedly! Already in Compton they have rendered the ballots invalid because of voter fraud! I believe that all the mail-in-ballots were use to advance the demons’ policies!

  8. April Allegro says

    Yes, I believe that Max is very likely correct.

    If you do not think evil, then you are not playing the same game as they are.

    We are not accustomed to thinking that way, which continues this sad and scary reality.

    When we start playing low down and dirty, then we will be in the game.

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