Election Guide: What to Know About Voting in the Bay Area - NBC Bay Area
Decision 2018

Decision 2018

The latest news on local, state and national midterm elections

Election Guide: What to Know About Voting in the Bay Area



    Insight on Key Races in Tuesday's Midterm Election

    By all accounts, this is a midterm election like no other. Political analyst Larry Gerston breaks down the potential impact of key national, state and local races in the run-up to Tuesday. (Published Monday, Nov. 5, 2018)

    What to Know

    • Polls will be open Tuesday, Nov. 6, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

    • As long as you're in line before 8 p.m., you can still vote

    • Eleven statewide propositions will be part of this fall's ballot

    California voters will cast ballots for statewide offices, including the race for governor, and other contests Tuesday in the midterm elections.

    Below, you'll find election day resources, including links to county elections offices and helpful tools to find your polling place.

    Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday. As long as voters are in line before 8 p.m., they can still vote.


    Register to Vote

    The voter registration deadline in California is 15 days before Election Day, so registration for the November election needed to be postmarked or submitted electronically no later than Oct. 22. 

    You can still register for the next election or "conditionally" register at a county elections office or vote center. The ballots will be processed once the county elections office completes voter verification.

    What If I Just Moved?

    If you already updated your address with the Department of Motor Vehicles or U.S. Postal Service, your registration will automatically update. If not, click here to register.

    Umm, I'm Not Even Sure I'm Registered

    It's OK, the California Secretary of State has you covered. Just click here to check on your voter status. 

    Find Your Polling Place

    Click on the link to your county elections office below to find your polling place.

    What If My Name Isn't on the Official Polling Place List?

    Voters who believe they've registered, but arrive at a polling place only to find they're not on the official voter registration list can cast a provisional ballot.  The same is true for vote-by-mail voters who did not receive a ballot or forgot to bring it to the polling place. Provisional ballots go into a special envelope, and they're counted after it's confirmed that you're registered to vote.

    Find out how to check your provisional vote's status here

    What If I Changed My Name?

    You'll need to re-register. Ideally, you'd first update your California driver's license or ID with the DMV. 

    Ballot 101: What Is California's November Election All About?

    California had an Open Primary in June, which means candidates for an office from all parties, plus "No Party Preference" candidates, ran against one another in one race. Now, the top two vote-getters, regardless of party affiliation, square off in the General Election in November. The ballot will include state offices, Congressional contests, local and statewide measures and other races. 

    Photos: Who's Running for State Office in CaliforniaPhotos: Who's Running for State Office in California

    Statewide Ballot Propositions

    Voters will decide on 11 statewide ballot propositions. Click here for details on each issue.

    Something Didn't Seem Right at the Polling Place

    Do you know about California's Voter Bill of Rights? If you feel like your right to vote was violated or any of those conditions were not met, you can contact the Secretary of State.

    • Online: Click here
    • Phone: 800-345-8683
    • Email: elections@sos.ca.gov

    NBC Bay Area has also partnered with ProPublica and other news organizations covering problems that prevent eligible voters from casting ballots — and we need your help.

    The Electionland project relies on citizens on the ground to tell us about issues like long lines, registration problems, purged voter rolls, broken machines, voter intimidation and changed voting locations.

    Voters coming across problems can contact NBC Bay Area's Investigative Unit tip line at 1-833-622-5688.

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