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California to have permanent mail voting after governor signs local Assembly member's bill

Mailing ballots to every state voter during pandemic credited with record-breaking participation in 2020 presidential election

Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill Monday to make permanent the state's pandemic-era process of mailing an election ballot to every active registered voter in the state.

Assemblyman Marc Berman authored AB 37, which makes the pandemic practice of mailing ballots to all California voters permanent. Photo by Veronica Weber.

The law, Assembly Bill 37 authored by Assemblyman Marc Berman (D-Menlo Park), will continue the state's mail voting practice that began during the November 2020 election and continued to this month's failed election to recall Newsom from office. Berman represents the 24th Assembly District, which includes Palo Alto, Mountain View and Menlo Park.

California joins Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Vermont and Hawaii as states that send a ballot to all registered voters by default.

Gov. Gavin Newsom. Courtesy Office of Gov. Gavin Newsom.

"Last year we took unprecedented steps to ensure all voters had the opportunity to cast a ballot during the pandemic and today we are making those measures permanent after record-breaking participation in the 2020 presidential election," Newsom said in a statement.

Voters will still have the option to forfeit their mail-in ballot if they want to vote in person.

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"When voters get a ballot in the mail, they vote,” Berman said in a statement. "As other states actively look for ways to make it harder for people to vote, California is expanding access to an already safe and secure ballot."

State residents can register to vote at registertovote.ca.gov.

A voter drops off a ballot at the Rinconada Library voting center in Palo Alto on March 3, 2020. Photo by Magali Gauthier

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California to have permanent mail voting after governor signs local Assembly member's bill

Mailing ballots to every state voter during pandemic credited with record-breaking participation in 2020 presidential election

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Uploaded: Tue, Sep 28, 2021, 11:07 am

Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill Monday to make permanent the state's pandemic-era process of mailing an election ballot to every active registered voter in the state.

The law, Assembly Bill 37 authored by Assemblyman Marc Berman (D-Menlo Park), will continue the state's mail voting practice that began during the November 2020 election and continued to this month's failed election to recall Newsom from office. Berman represents the 24th Assembly District, which includes Palo Alto, Mountain View and Menlo Park.

California joins Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Vermont and Hawaii as states that send a ballot to all registered voters by default.

"Last year we took unprecedented steps to ensure all voters had the opportunity to cast a ballot during the pandemic and today we are making those measures permanent after record-breaking participation in the 2020 presidential election," Newsom said in a statement.

Voters will still have the option to forfeit their mail-in ballot if they want to vote in person.

"When voters get a ballot in the mail, they vote,” Berman said in a statement. "As other states actively look for ways to make it harder for people to vote, California is expanding access to an already safe and secure ballot."

State residents can register to vote at registertovote.ca.gov.

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