January 2, 2008

common sense

My friend Anon from Cal Poly is a decently bright guy. He graduated from the Engineering school with a Bob Marley-esque GPA (it was high), interned at one of the hotter bay area tech companies over the summer, and is now working on a PhD at an Ivy League institution. We talk politics on an almost daily basis, an area of discussion which brings up passionate and downright furious rants about the inadequacies, incompetencies, and impotencies of blah, blah, blah, blah….

So it’s understandable that I made sure to remind him that if his state is one of the many states (including California) who moved their primary up to February 5th, the voter registration deadline was coming up.

You’re registered to vote in the California primaries, yes?
Anon: ummmmmm
Anon: I don’t know.
Anon: the thing is…
Me: For someone as angry at politics as you, there’s no excuse for not voting in the primaries.
Me: If Anon is too lazy to vote in the primaries, we as a generation are [explicit deleted]ed.
Me: Proper [explicit deleted]ed.
Anon: haha
Anon: you have a strong argument here.
Anon: how do I register?

…which is a valid question. Assuming you’re in California, the easiest way I’ve found to register is to fill out this form, after which you’ll be mailed a copy of your voter registration information to sign and return, with postage already paid. In California if the envelope is postmarked by the 22nd, you’re eligible to vote in the primaries. A full list of ways to register can be found at calvoter.org:

How do I register to vote? 

To register, you’ll need to complete a voter registration form, sometimes called an affidavit. There are many ways to get the form: – pick up a form in person at any number of public offices (library, DMV, post office, county election office, city clerk, etc.)

– call 1-800-345-VOTE to request a form be mailed to you

– call your county election office to request a form be mailed to you

– download a form in English or Spanish from the Secretary of State’s web site

-fill out the online registration form at the Secretary of State’s web site (it will be printed and mailed to you for your signature)

Additionally, many campaigns and political parties send out staff and volunteers to register voters at malls and other public places. You may request a voter registration form from these people too. The law requires them to supply you with a form regardless of which political party you want to register with, so don’t be misled by signs that say “Republicans Register Here” or “Democrats Register Here”. You can also register to vote when you renew your driver’s license with the DMV. The deadline to register to vote in the November election is October 18th. Your form must be signed, dated and postmarked by that deadline.

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