California Voter Trends

Last week, the U.S. Census Bureau released estimates that showed population gains in Riverside-San Bernardino (more than 50,000) and Sacramento (nearly 25,000), and slight population loss in Los Angeles (over 7,000). This is a forecast for the 2020 Census that will result in redistricting in 2021 that could favor the Inland Empire and be detrimental to Los Angeles. In related news, the Sacramento Bee developed a map of the growth in “no party preference” voter registration since 2016, which shows the greatest growth is in historically Republican counties where our partner regional tables and groups are active.


The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) analyzed census data and determined that California Latinx voter turnout increased 74% (!!) from 2014 to 2018, which translated to an additional 1.6 million votes.


Schools and Communities First Ballot Initiative

The Public Policy Institute of California’s new “Californians and Education” poll found that a majority of state residents (56%) and likely voters (54%) would approve of the Schools and Communities First 2020 ballot measure, led by CDT partner Million Voters Project. The measure would close the commercial property tax loophole in Proposition 13 and restore $11 billion a year for schools, community colleges and other vital community services.



The Los Angeles Times profiles Stockton’s universal basic income pilot, led by CDT ally Mayor Michael Tubbs and Sukhi Samra, head of the Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration.


Legislation from our endorsed elected officials:

  • The two formerly competing bills on police deadly use of force — one led by CDT-endorsed Assemblymember Shirley Weber and supported by community groups, the other led by Senator Ana Caballero and supported by law enforcement — are now linked to raise the legal standard of for officer use of deadly force and advocate for more policy guidance and training for officers.
  • Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo introduced legislation (AB 1753) to protect immigrants seeking legal help from fraudulent or incompetent individuals who are selling their services.
  • Assemblywoman Sydney Kamlager-Dove is sponsoring legislation (AB 241, 242 and 243) that “requires medical professionals, judges and peace offers to complete training that helps workers unpack how internal beliefs affect their work.”



CDT ally California Civic Engagement Project (CCEP) at USC partnered with the Public Policy Institute of California and USC on a new study of how the Voter’s Choice Act (VCA) — which allowed counties to adopt a new voting model of mailing ballots to all registered voters and replacing traditional polling places — affected voter turnout in the 2018 election. They found a 3% increase in voter turnout between 2014 and 2018 in the five participating counties — Madera, Napa, Nevada, Sacramento and San Mateo — compared to other counties. Additionally, “for young voters, Latinos, and Asian Americans, gains in turnout were generally also steeper in the counties that adopted the VCA than in counties that did not.” CCEP also partnered with the Center for Social Innovation on a VCA research brief series, the first of which looks at the considerations on implementation. Los Angeles County is adopting VCA in 2020.