Everything You Need to Know About Election Day

8081448116_dbf4c6931f_o.jpg“Elections belong to the people. It's their decision. If they decide to turn their back on the fire and burn their behinds, then they will just have to sit on their blisters.”

-- Abraham Lincoln

Election Day is right around the corner, folks!! Although we are in an off-year for Presidential Elections, there are a several critical decisions to make on the ballot this year.

First thing’s first: Do you know where your polling location is? If not, you can find out by clicking here, on the Secretary of State’s website OR by calling 800-345-8683 (toll-free).

Secondly, it’s important to note that polls are open from  7:00am to 8:00pm on Tuesday November 4th, 2014. One helpful tip: people are often busy between work, school, and life; it helps to plan now and schedule your voting time in your calendar.  

We know many people prefer to vote by mail or provisional ballots -- you can track them here. If you got a vote by mail ballot but haven’t sent it in yet, DO NOT mail it in- it’s too late. Take it to your polling place or City Hall (250 Hamilton).

If you did not receive an absentee ballot, be sure  to go to your polling place before 8 pm and ask to vote via a Provisional Ballot. The Registrar of Voters will check that you did not vote by mail, and then count your ballot a few days after Election Day.

We know many people ask the question: Does my vote really matter? (We’re talking to you, too, Millennials!)


Seriously, it does. Let us count the ways….

  1. City Council: Most people know that at the local level we have an exciting city council race that is featuring 12 candidates for five seats. These candidates have various views on all sorts of different issues, including housing, transportation, parking, our beautiful parks, and more. Check out video Interviews, coverage of the debates and profiles of the candidates here.

  2. Measures: A few important measures in Palo Alto are also on the ballot, including Measure B (an increase on the hotel tax in Palo Alto to raise money for infrastructure improvement projects), Measure C (also check this out) (a proposed reform for the utility tax) and Measure D (also check this out) (a consideration to reduce the size of the city council). PAF supports Measure B because of the infrastructure projects it will fund within the city.

  3. School Board: Five candidates are running for two seats on the Palo Alto United School District Board. Most residents agree that our schools are one of the primary reasons Palo Alto is such a wonderful place. A strong PAUSD Board helps keep it that way. Here is some information about the candidates.

  4. Propositions: There are six propositions on ballot for the state of California, including such important issues including as a Water Bond Measure, and measures around healthcare and criminal justice reform. More information can be found here on the state website.

  5. And….not to mention a Governor's race, Lt. Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, State Comptroller, your representative in Congress and MANY more key races!!!

‘Okay okay, but there are so many people voting...does my vote even make a difference?’

In 2012 less than 100 votes separated the final two seats for the City Council in Palo Alto.

In 1892, President Cleveland won California by .05% of the vote which led him to victory against President Benjamin Harrison.

In 2000, a 537 vote edge helped President George W. Bush carry the state of Florida over Vice President Al Gore.

Still think your vote doesn’t matter? Neither do we!

Get out the vote on Tuesday!



get updates