Why Is My Vote Important?
The simple act of voting is the cornerstone of our democracy. While Americans universally celebrate the right to vote in principle, our nation’s history has been marked by intense struggles to expand access to voting for groups that have been excluded from this basic feature of citizenship: women, African-Americans, young people, and immigrants. We should never take the right to vote for granted, when so many have fought so hard to make sure that it is a right that is protected for all Americans.
Voters in the November 2020 election will choose our nation’s president and vice president, congressional representatives, state legislators, local office holders, and several state propositions.
The winning presidential candidate will have enormous power to affect our nation’s domestic and international policies, and will be in charge of running the federal government. This includes the power to appoint cabinet members and to nominate judges for the United States Supreme Court, and judges to the lower federal courts, all of which require Senate approval.
While most people are focused on the upcoming presidential election, your vote is also very important in deciding who will run your state and local government. Voters will be choosing members of the House of Representatives and the California State Senate and Assembly to represent Orange County in our state and national legislatures. Decisions concerning essential everyday government services – including our schools, police, fire departments, and parks & recreation – will be made by our city councils, mayors, and school boards in local elections. These elections are nonpartisan and often are decided by a few hundred votes. For information to help you be an informed voter, please visit Understand the Issues.
Moreover, California voters have the ability to create new state laws, amend the state’s constitution, or change existing law through ballot measures, also known as propositions. For more information on this year’s statewide ballot measures and the process to qualify for the ballot, please view the Official Voter Information Guide for the California General Election.