CA Asian American Pacific Islander’s Guide to Voting

It’s time to get out and vote!

Vote for our futures!

We are living through a global pandemic. Our communities are facing unsafe working conditions as essential workers, the threat of eviction, lack of access to affordable and nutritious food, and so much more. With this election, our lives, health, and rights to determine our future are on the line. We all want the same things: a stable home and strong health for our family, the best education for our children and grandchildren, and the ability to care for our loved ones. In order to secure a better future for our families and communities, we must make sure our voices are heard in this election to get the resources we need. Asian American and Pacific Islander communities, along with Black, Latino, Indigenous, and working-class communities are suffering while the richest five billionaires in the country collected $76 billion within two months of the pandemic’s start. In order to recover from this crisis and rebuild our state, we must show our strength in numbers and vote for the future we want. When we represent together, we have power. Join us in voting to rebuild a California that finally works for all of us.

Get Registered

The first step towards voting is making sure you are registered in your state.

How do I vote?

Register To Vote

Register to vote by October 19th! You can check your voter registration and register to vote using the tools above.

Vote-By-Mail

In California, all active registered voters will automatically receive a vote-by-mail ballot. Ballots will be mailed out on October 5th. To check if your ballot has been mailed, use the vote-by-mail ballot tracker or contact your local county elections office. Drop off the vote-by-mail ballot at a drop-off center or mailbox. Vote-by-mail ballots must be postmarked on or before 8:00pm on November 3rd. 

Vote-by-mail ballot tracker:

You can track your ballot to see when it’s mailed, received, and counted by signing up at WheresMyBallot.sos.ca.gov

Vote In-Person

If you’re voting in-person, vote early to beat the lines! Early voting begins on October 24th, and the last day to vote is November 3rd. To find your polling location and see where early voting is offered, visit sos.ca.gov/elections/polling-place

Need Language Help?
CA offers language assistance for voters in 14 Asian languages. To find out what language assistance is available, contact your county elections office. Call to (800) 345-VOTE (8683) to find your county office. You can also download our voting FAQs and and voter guide in other languages below.

Important Information

What are the important deadlines for this election?

October 5th – vote-by-mail ballots begin to get mailed out

October 19th – deadline to register to vote

October 24th – early in-person voting begins in some counties

November 3rd – last day to vote in-person, and last day to drop off vote-by-mail ballot (must be postmarked by 8pm)

How do I get a vote by mail ballot?

Due to Executive Order N-64-20, issued by Governor Newsom on May 8, 2020, all active registered voters in the state of California will automatically receive a vote-by-mail ballot. Voters can expect to receive their ballots in the mail beginning 29 days before the election.

When do I get my vote-by-mail ballot?
County elections officials will begin mailing out vote-by-mail ballots and vote-by-mail packets on October 5, 2020.
I haven’t received my vote-by-mail ballot yet. How do I check the status of its delivery?

You can track when your ballot was mailed and when to expect to receive it in your mailbox using WheresMyBallot.sos.ca.gov

How do I mail in my ballot?
You can return the ballot in any mailbox (no stamps needed), or dropoff your ballot at your county elections official’s office, or any ballot drop-box location, any polling place, or any vote center in California.
When should I mail in my ballot?
We encourage voters to mail in ballots as soon as possible. However, California has extended the time that vote-by-mail ballots can arrive to county elections offices for this election. Vote-by-mail ballots postmarked on or before 8:00 p.m. on Election Day can arrive up to 17 days after Election Day and be counted.
What should I do if I want to vote in person?
You can vote in-person, even if you receive a vote-by-mail ballot in the mail. If you want to vote in person, it’s recommended that you vote early. Early voting begins on October 24th, and the last day to vote is November 3rd. Don’t wait until November 3rd! To find your polling location and see where early voting is offered, visit sos.ca.gov/elections/polling-place
How do I vote if I don’t speak English?
CA offers language assistance for voters in 14 Asian languages. To find out what language assistance is available, contact your county elections office. Call to (800) 345-VOTE (8683) to find your county office.
I missed the deadline to register to vote. Can I still vote?
Yes, California offers same-day voter registration. You can visit your polling place or vote center as soon as they offer early voting to register and cast your vote!

What’s at stake?

This election, we have the chance to rewrite our collective future so that all of us – not just a wealthy few – are able to thrive and take care of our loved ones. It’s up to us to choose a path forward that protects the health, safety, and economic well-being for all of us. The choices we make in this election will shape the future for our families. It’s time to represent together and vote for our future.

Racial and Economic Justice

YES on Prop 15: Schools and Communities First
CA ranks 39th in the country in per pupil spending and has THE LARGEST class sizes of any state. Prop 15 reclaims up to $12 billion for public schools and local community programs (such as affordable housing, health clinics, firefighters and public transportation) by closing corporate property tax loopholes, while protecting homeowners, renters, and small businesses. The top 10% of CA’s wealthiest corporations would generate 92% of all the revenue that will be used to reinvest in our communities. It’s time wealthy corporations paid their fair share like the rest of us.
YES on Prop 16: Opportunity For All
CA is one of only 9 states that ban equal opportunity programs. It is essential that those who face discrimination based on their race, gender, or ethnicity receive equal opportunity. Prop 16 restores affirmative action by repealing Proposition 209 (passed in 1996), which prohibited the state from considering race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in public employment, education, or contracting. Supporting Prop 16 would lead to more opportunities for the most marginalized in our communities.
YES on Prop 21: Rent Control
The rent is too high. Over half of Californians are rent-burdened and spend over 30% of their income on rent. Working-class immigrants and refugees have spent decades building up ethnic communities, but are now forced out of the very communities that they’ve built due to rising rent prices. Prop 21 expands local governments’ power to establish rent control on properties over 15 years old, while restricting rent control policies from violating landlords’ right to a fair financial return on their property.
NO on Prop 22: Gig Workers Classification
We support workers’ rights. Prop 22 would change the employment classification of app-based transportation and delivery drivers to independent contractors instead of employees. This classification would allow corporations like Lyft, Uber, and Doordash to deny their drivers the wage and benefits that are guaranteed to employees. The initiative would also close off a potential path to unionization, because federal law reserves collective bargaining for employees.

Building Our Democracy

YES on Prop 17: Free the Vote
Nearly 50,000 Californians are currently on parole and contributing to our community as essential workers during this pandemic. Prop 17 restores the right to vote to people convicted of felonies who are on parole, so they can be adequately represented and included in our democracy after serving their sentence.
YES on Prop 18: 17 Year Old Voting Rights
Throughout history, young people have served as the moral compass in our communities – leading social movements, knocking on doors to talk to voters, and serving as essential workers to help their families. Prop 18 allows 17-year-olds who will be 18 at the time of the next general election to vote in primaries and special elections, and expands our electorate so more people are included in our democracy.

Criminal Justice Reform

NO on Prop 20: Criminal Sentencing, Parole, and DNA
For too long, harsh and unfair criminal sentencing policies have devastated low-income communities of color. Prop 20 makes this worse by limiting parole programs for non-violent offenders, and expands the list of offenses that would disqualify inmates from parole. Prop 20 would re-categorize some crimes that are currently labeled as misdemeanors into felony convictions, and require DNA collection of people convicted of certain misdemeanors. The passage of Prop 20 would increase the criminalization of our communities and tear families apart rather than promoting rehabilitation and restoration.
YES on Prop 25: Referendum on Bail Reform
The bail system discriminates against poor people and people of color by requiring individuals who are awaiting trial to either pay an affordable bail bond or wait for weeks and months in jail. Those who can pay walk free, while those who can’t pay are separated from loved ones and lose their jobs, even if they are innocent. Prop 25 would replace cash bail with risk assessments by judges.

Download our GOTV information pamphlets.

English Voter Guide

English FAQs

Chinese Voter Guide

Chinese FAQs

Hmong Voter Guide

Khmer Voter Guide

Khmer FAQs

Korean Voter Guide

Korean FAQs

Lao Voter Guide

Lao FAQs

Tagalog Voter Guide

Tagalog FAQs

Vietnamese Voter Guide

Vietnamese FAQs

You’re all set, now go out and vote!

Our Partners

About Us

AAPIs For Civic Empowerment-Education Fund (AAPI FORCE-EF) is an alliance of community organizations serving Asian American and Pacific Islanders across the state of California. AAPI FORCE-EF builds organizers, organizations, and networks to form a far-reaching, powerful AAPI political bloc. We work on campaigns that center the needs of working-class Asian immigrant, refugee, and Pacific Islander families. We speak to voters in their own languages and empower young AAPI voters to mark their ballots. Together, we build the power necessary for progressive change in our communities.