This study evaluated California’s Voters Choice Act and the effects on turnout and voting methods.
Abstract: “In 2018, California implemented a series of voting reforms under the new Voters Choice Act. Counties were allowed to opt in to the program rather than be required by law. Five counties, Madera, Napa, Nevada, Sacramento and San Mateo, implemented the changes for the 2018 primary and general elections. This paper examines the effects from the adoption of the Voter Choice Act in 2018 in terms of turnout and voting methods, with a focus on the shift toward vote by mail. The goal of this study is to better understand who is voting when and how in the revamped California election environment. Results show that when given multiple convenience options such as vote by mail and vote centers with early voting hours, voters overwhelmingly choose to vote by mail. Results also suggest than when voters change their behavior in a reform environment, the majority move from in person voting to vote by mail rather than vice versa.”