What You Need to Know About California’s Upcoming Midterms

By Nanki Sekhon

The midterms all across the nation are on November 6th. California, specifically, has eleven propositions, a new governor, and seats on the House of Senate and House of Representatives for citizens to vote on. Although this is a very blue state, the votes that citizens decide to put in will affect who will sit in Congress and what issues California is focused on solving.



Governor Jerry Brown served from 1975-1983 and again since 2011. But California’s longest-serving governor, has decided to retire. This leaves his position up for either Democrat Gavin Newsom, former mayor of San Francisco, or John Cox, businessman. The main issues Cox is planning to combat include repealing the gas tax, fixing California schools, keeping housing affordable, and stopping water rationing. On the other hand, Newsom is passionate about economic development, the quality of public education, protection of the environment, gun-safety laws, and universal affordable healthcare.

Senator Dianne Feinstein has been in power since 1992 and is battling for her spot in Congress against Kevin de León, Senate President Pro Tempore. The two are Democrats and do not have as much contrast on their beliefs between them as the candidates running for Governor. In recent years, Feinstein moved left on issues concerning marijuana usage and the death penalty but de Leon calls her a, “ ‘country club’ type too meek to take on Trump.” Although de Leon is behind in the prediction polls for Senator, he’s received backing from the state’s Democratic Party making this race very tight.

Depending on the district you reside in, your representative differs. California has 53 different representative; The Vallejo/Benicia area current representative is Congressman Mike Thompson who is running against Anthony Mills, war veteran. Since representatives deal with more local issues, it is encouraged to read up on the main issues the candidates are concerned over before placing a ballot.


Last but not least, California is voting on eleven vastly-different proposition. For more information on each one, read below:


Proposition 1: Whether or not California should spend four billion to help both veterans and low-income families to have access to lower cost of housing and house loans.


Proposition 2: Two billion dollars would be granted to the homeless for mental health care and house some of them. The money for this is planned to come out of a tax aimed to take 1% of the incomes of one million and up.


Proposition 3: Sell $8.9 billion in state bonds to pay for water recycling, conservation, stormwater capture, groundwater storage, projects to better fisheries and help key habitats. This proposition covers the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles River, and Lake Tahoe.


Proposition 4: Otherwise known as the Children’s Hospital Bond Initiative, this allows for $1.5 billion dollars to be used for renovations at pediatric hospitals including advancements in medical technology.


Proposition 5: The Property Tax Transfer will get rid of the “mover’s penalty” many elders face- a jump in their taxes after moving. This was originally discussed in 1978’s Prop 13, but there were too many conditions put on how much they are paying for the house, the state, and the frequency of the moving that the penalty stayed.


Proposition 6: Last year, a gas tax was passed adding 12 cents for each gallon of gas and raising car registration costs. The aim was to finance the costs of road maintenance and expand freeways. The Voter Approval for Future Gas and Vehicle Taxes and 2017 Tax Repeal Initiative (Proposition 6) would end the extra tax on gas.


Proposition 7: Should California use Daylight Savings time year round?


Proposition 8: Limits on Dialysis Clinics’ Revenue and Required Refunds Initiative forces clinics to accept all patients (no matter the insurance), report information to the state, and give refunds to revenue exceeding 115% of the cost of caring for patients.


Proposition 10: The Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act (1995) gave cities the freedom to choose their rent controls for any apartment built after 1995. This proposition would broaden the local powers for cities to decide their rent controls.


Proposition 11: Gives a set of rules for ambulance drivers to follow which include being available to roll on-calls during breaks, take breaks at the start/end of shift, be paid on breaks, be available on cell phones on breaks, etc.


Proposition 12: The sale of meat and eggs from animals kept in small spaces would be banned. If passed, this proposition will take effect in 2020.


The midterms are extremely influential in choosing which direction California goes in politics.  Your voice matters, so go out and register or pre-register to vote for our upcoming election.


(Paid: 85)

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