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See key dates voters should know for the 2024 California Primary Election

There is no better time than now to prepare for an election year. 

The California Primary Election is around the corner, taking place in March. Before Election Day, there are some important dates to know.

Scroll down for key calendar dates leading up to the March 5 Primary.

California Primary Election mail-in ballots 

County election offices will begin mailing ballots by Feb. 5. All California active registered voters will receive a vote-by-mail ballot. In the 2022 Primary Election, California saw a submission of more than 6 million mail-in ballots.

Vote-by-mail ballots can be returned by mail, at a drop-off location, or at county elections office.

Early voting sites will open Feb. 5Ballot drop-off locations open Feb. 6.

California Primary registration deadline

The last day to register to vote in the March 5 California Primary is Feb. 20. Check your registration status and details by clicking here.

County elections offices and voting locations will also offer same day voter registration after the online deadline, up to and including Election Day. Same-day registration, also known as conditional voter registration, allows votes to register to vote after the registration deadline and cast a ballot that will be processed and counted when the county elections office has completed the voter registration verification process.

California Primary Election Day

Election Day is on Tuesday, March 5. Polls will open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. As long as you’re in line by 8 p.m., you can vote.

Mailed ballots must be postmarked no later than this date and received by March 12.

Early in-person voting

Early in-person voting will open in Voter’s Choice Act counties on Feb. 24. A 2016 Senate bill established the act to provide voters with more flexible voting options, including mailing every voter a ballot, expanding early voting, allowing voters to vote at an vote center within their home county and providing ballot drop-off locations.

The counties include: 

  • Alameda
  • Amador
  • Butte
  • Calaveras 
  • El Dorado
  • Fresno
  • Humboldt 
  • Kings
  • Los Angeles
  • Madera 
  • Marin 
  • Mariposa
  • Merced
  • Napa
  • Nevada
  • Orange
  • Placer
  • Riverside
  • Sacramento
  • San Benito
  • San Diego
  • San Mateo 
  • Santa Clara
  • Santa Cruz
  • Sonoma
  • Stanislaus
  • Tuolumne 
  • Ventura
  • Yolo

No Party Preference voters

No Party Preference voters — voters who declined to provide a party preference — will receive ballots without presidential candidates. No Party Preference voters can request a ballot for a replacement ballot with presidential candidates from their county elections office.

The American Independent Party, Democratic Party and Libertarian Party allow No Party Preference voters to request their party’s ballot. The Green Party, Peace & Freedom Party, and Republican party require voters to be registered with their party to vote for their slate. 


Source: NBC Los Angeles

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