No — we’re not going to tell you how you should vote. That’s up to you. We do, however, strongly encourage you to vote.

It’s thanks to voters like you that we now enjoy the legal medical and adult use cannabis industry. As a result of the 1996 election, California became the first state in the nation to legalize medical cannabis. And, just in 2016, Californians once again voted to legalize adult use cannabis. 

SPARC has a long history of working with government at the local, state, and federal levels to bring about significant change. Sometimes the change isn’t as fast as we’d like, but together we can change policy (and politicians) for the better.

In this guide you find:

KEY DATES

Mark your calendars. For California voters, there are three important dates to remember in order to participate in the 2020 general election:

OCT 19

Voter Registration Deadline

REGISTER TO VOTE

OCT 29

Absentee Ballot Request Deadline

REQUEST TO VOTE BY MAIL

NOV 3

Election Day

FIND YOUR POLLING PLACE

Important COVID-19 Update: California will be mailing a ballot to every registered voter for the November election. However, California is not an exclusively vote-by-mail state, so make sure to confirm your registration and address to make sure your ballot goes to the right place. The changes do not remove the option to cast a ballot in person.

VOTING RESOURCES

Click on the logos below to access great, non-partisan resources for voting:

Seal of California
Vote Dot Org logo
Vote Riders logo
US Vote Foundation logo

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Can I register at the voting booth?

Yes — California does offer same-day, in-person voter registration. However, through October 19th, you can do also do it from the safety of your own home:

California is my home state, but I won't be home for the election — can I still vote in California?

Yes — any registered California voter may apply for an absentee ballot and vote by mail.

Important COVID-19 Update: California will be mailing a ballot to every registered voter for the November election. However, California is not an exclusively vote-by-mail state, so make sure to confirm your registration and address to make sure your ballot goes to the right place. The changes do not remove the option to cast a ballot in person.

If you need your ballot sent to an alternate address for the general election, you must submit your request by October 27 and return it by November 3.

Can I vote without leaving my house?

Yes — any registered California voter may apply for an absentee ballot and vote by mail.

Important COVID-19 Update: California will be mailing a ballot to every registered voter for the November election. However, California is not an exclusively vote-by-mail state, so make sure to confirm your registration and address to make sure your ballot goes to the right place. The changes do not remove the option to cast a ballot in person.

If you need your ballot sent to an alternate address for the general election, you must submit your request by October 27 and return it by November 3.

Can I vote early?

Yes — but dates vary by location, so contact your local election office.

Do I need an ID to vote?

If you completed your registration in the past and have voted before, you’re all set. If you’re a first-time voter or want to finish your registration on Election Day, you will need to bring a photo ID or a copy of a utility bill, bank statement, or paycheck. Get a full summary of voter ID details from VoteRiders.

CANNABIS BALLOT MEASURES

Ever since California became the first state to legalize medical cannabis in 1996, several other states have followed suit. However, there are several states where cannabis is still illegal — so the fight continues. Here is a summary of key cannabis measures on the ballot in the 2020 Election. If you have friends and family in these states, encourage them to vote to advance cannabis policy in the right direction. Cannabis won’t be fully legal until it’s legal across the whole country.

Map of states with medical cannabis measures on the ballot in 2020

MEDICAL

There are currently 16 states where cannabis is illegal. In three of those states, however, 2020 voters have the chance to make medical cannabis legal.


Mississippi


Nebraska


South Dakota

Map of states with recreational cannabis measures on the ballot in 2020

RECREATIONAL

There are four state where citizens will vote in 2020 to legalize recreational — or “adult use” — cannabis. Medical cannabis is currently legal in three of these states.


Arizona


Montana


New Jersey

  • Current status: medical cannabis legal (since 2019)
  • Ballot measure: none yet

South Dakota

OTHER

One other state to watch in 2020 is Oregon, where voters will be voting to decriminalize all drugs. If this measure passes, it would be the first state in the nation to do so.


Oregon

Statue of Liberty

Lady Liberty says, “Light a sparc for democracy: exercise your right to vote!”