Today is last day to register to vote online, by mail in California

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Monday, October 19, 2020
California voter registration deadline is Monday Oct.19
California's voter registration deadline is Monday, Oct. 19 and with 16 days from Election Day, millions of voters are not waiting to the last minute to cast their ballots. Over 2.7 million ballots have been returned statewide since Friday.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- We are just over two weeks from Election Day and millions of voters are not waiting until the last minute to vote.

"I just wanted to drop my ballot in person this time instead of waiting for the mail. At least I would know it had arrived," said Angela Pownall-Elizalve.

Also not taking any chances and casting her vote early was Kristin Urquiza.

Urquiza made national news after her dad died of COVID-19. She voted with him in mind.

"I drove here in my dad's pickup truck and I listened to his favorite songs on my way here. I wanted him to be as close to me as possible," said Urquiza.

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Statewide over 2.7 million ballots have been returned. Throughout the Bay Area, we are seeing an increase in early voter turnout compared to 2016.

"We have about a 23% turn out in San Francisco which is really good for this point in time," said San Francisco Director of elections, John Arntz.

In Santa Clara County over 70,000 ballots have been received.

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There is no disputing that this year's election will be different than those in the past, but it will be relying more on ballots sent through the mail, than those cast in the ballot booth.

"November two years ago at this point we had only received 0.16% of our returns, whereas we are closer at least 5%," said Shannon Bushey with the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters.

"We are 950,000 registered voters right now so that's a 10% returned," said Tim Dupuis with the Alameda County Registrar of Voters.

Monday, Oct. 19 is an important deadline, it's the last day where you can register online or by mail to vote in California.

This will be the first time San Francisco resident, Uri Dolez votes, "I knew that it was coming but I didn't know when. I've never voted in my life."

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If you don't register by Oct. 19 you can still vote on Nov. 3.

"After tomorrow (October 19) people can still register but they have to come to the voting center to do so. Or on Election Day come to the voting center or their polling place," explained Arntz.

John Arntz also encouraged voters to track their ballots here.

"Voters that are concerned about the post office or anything else with their ballots can track the status of their ballots on our website. There is a tool called the "voter portal" and they can actually see when we receive the ballot," said Arntz.

Statewide you can track your ballot here.

Get the latest stories and videos about the 2020 election here.