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tv   Beyond the Headlines  ABC  October 16, 2011 10:00am-10:30am PDT

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welcome to "beyond the headlines", i'm cheryl jennings. today we're talking about elections and importance of it's. according to the secretary of state. general election saw the highest voter turnout for a gubernatorial election since 1994, almost 60% of california voters submitted ballots and half of those ballots were cast by mail. the next regularly scheduled statewide election is february 2012 primary election. but today, we're going to focus on our own local elections in the bay area and why it's important to show up atpolls ths polls this november. several local areas are voting and they have ballot measures. joining us from the san
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francisco department of elections is the deputy director of the department of elections, nataliya kuzina. thank here youg here today. >> i know your department is very busy, especially this time of the year? >> absolutely. 460,000. >> population is 800,000? >> that is what the data says. >> so 460,000 represents people that are 18 an older? >> yes. >> and those people that can vote? >> yes. >> and tell me more? >> just a few weeks we will elect your new mayor. and we'll vote eight local measures. >> the deadline to register? >> deadline is coming up, monday october 24th and there are several ways to obtain the
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registration cards? >> public offices, public libraries, department of motor vehicles and u.s. postal service and of course they are available at our department. >> can you download them? >> there is no option in california to get voter registration online but hopefully they will join many states in america. >> and you have something called rank choice voting. i want to show you this flyer, it goes into detail about this. for some people it's very confusing? >> rank choice voting raises questions. it was passed 2004 as a charter amendment and, it's to direct local issues that are on the ballot but the rank choice
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voting. this allows up to three candidates for the same office. >> while you're talking, can they find more information on youtube? >> it's a video for this election. it's closed caption video and available in english, chinese and spanish on how to start to mark the ballot. >> how do you do this? can you do different choices? >> there are couple things you need to be aware of. the candidate in each column and avoid marking the same candidate because your vote will only count once. do not mark more than one
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candidate. >> why it so important important for people to register to vote? >> i think voting is very powerful. it's like taking your opinion in your other hands and making a difference in the unit. >> after the election what can we expect? >> election results, preliminary election results, we plan to release the results around 8:45 p.m. on election night. those will include votes on the ballots received by the department prior to election day. and then can the p.m. we'll release data from the polling places. >> because you have so many candidates for mayor we may not have an answer? >> absolutely, absolutely. i must say, we plan to release preliminary results and update those. >> we have a lot to look forward
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to? >> absolutely. >> we do have to take a brea we'll be back with starting my progresso soup for lunch plan, huh. nope, just having some tender chicken and some tasty noodles. let's see...south western vegetables...60 calories. ya' know those jeans look nice. they do? yup. so you were checking me yup. out? [ male announcer progresso. 40 soups 100 calories or less. those five food groups sound a whole lot better when you put them in a taco shell instead of a pyramid. old el paso. when you gotta have mexican.
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welcome back to beyond the headlines. san francisco has more than a dozen candidates and voters will be selecting by rank choice. the constitutionality of san francisco's election system has been put under scrutiny and was
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debated before the 9th circuit court of appeals. it's the same system that propelled jean qan has the surprise winner in the mayoral race in oakland. two of the three judges on the u.s. circuit court of appeals panel are from san francisco. you are familiar with the disputed voting system. since 2004 rank choice system has allowed san francisco voters to pick their top three choices in a race. if no candidate collects a first place ballots the person that comes in last is eliminated and those that chose that candidate had their votes transferred to their second choice or third until someone wins. a recent poll found voert confusion. steven hill the architect of the system, other veas indicate that voters understand. >> that doesn't mean necessarily they could sit down and count the ballots for you, but they understand what they have to do as a voter.
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that is to rank one, two, three and they feel comfortable doing that. >> ron is trying to outdo rank choice. he was sun unsuccessful candidate for supervisor in 2006. >> i don't believe its constitutional system because votes don't know who the final three candidates are. >> what they are complaining out at the end of the day that not all the votes go into winning candidates column. >> those monitoring the legal challenge are aware that san francisco is gearing up for the first competitor mayor's race and everybody is talking about what happened in oakland, jean qan had fewer votes this than don perata but pulled off a victory by gathering more second and third choice votes. a political science professor citizen it changes the die nap zblix it does change the calculation of candidates in
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terms what happens in local races and makes it more complicated for voters. >> the court of appeals upheld rank choice voting system by unanimous system. rank choice may not be perfect, it is far from unconstitutional. joining us from the legally of women voters is the current president is katherine gavzy. i love working with the league of women voters. i was happy to be part of that. i'm interested in oakland issues but you have different deadlines. >> yes, we have an election coming up. there will be. >> the reason? >> it's the money. we have no candidates are running in this election. there are three battle measures on the ballot. voters will receive their ballots in the next few days. they need to mail them in by november 15th harks is the
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deadline for the registrar of voters receiving the ballots by mail. there is a parcel tax -- there is always a parcel tax. there is a parcel tax, a proposal to change the office of city attorney in oakland from an elected office which has been since 2000 to an appointed one which is what it was before then. there is a measure to modify the terms of fully funding public employees pension plan. >> that is another controversy but what about rank choice voting? >> rank choice voting not so controversial any more in oakland. was tried and true. voters approved rank choice voting as a charter amendment by a very large majority, 69% voted for it. it took a while for the city to
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putting it into place. alameda county of registrar of voters did a great job setting up the system. it was finally decided that they had to do it because it was in the charter. there was lost concern about public miss understanding and confusion over the system and some people were saying some of the underserved members they not anticipate.timidated they >> members of the league have supported it? >> we worked in could litigations to support it. one, it saves money. that is very important these days. instead of having a primary election in the spring and then no candidate gets a majority then a runoff in november we have one election. we used to call it in sync runoff voting, in oakland we
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estimated it's about $800,000 to save. the other advantage we see that it increases voter participation because there some more interest it encourages the candidates to reach out beyond a small hard-core of their supports for broader appeal. because they want to be selected as somebody's second and third choice as well as first choice. we hope it builds community outreach efforts. smart is the website to go for all voters if you are confused or just want more information. that is where to register, how to register, when to register, what will be on your local ballot. its website that is supported by the league of women voters statewide, actually nationwide.
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all you do is go into smart and enter your address and show you what is going to be on your local ballot. the candidate for office, put in their biography all the information you need on the measures, as well. >> thank you so much. smote thank you so much. >> it's my publish to be here. >> we
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welcome back to "beyond the headlines." we've been talking about elections and voter out reach. peter lauterborn, coordinator for youth vote in the san francisco department of children youth and their families. meabout? that is about? >> it's a program in all public high schools, it has three components. we allow students to engage in the current electoral affairs of that season. i create materials that i provide with teachers and te ten the school site. it clause voter handbook that i made for them based on, you need to have things directly for that audience. we make it as easy as position. we try to make it as easy as possible.
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i typically because -- >> that is a cool job? >> it's a wonderful job. i get to go to every high school in the city and check it out and meet with teachers and students what is interesting to them. >> how do the students receive it? >> i think they really like it. they appreciate the fact -- they appreciate when there is an issue or candidate is speaking to them. if there are issues discuss their needs or ignoring their issues. that is why you need more in the process. >> is there an age where they are more receptive? is it eighth grade or high school? >> we start in high schools. we started doing that in middle schools, but i think teachers will give you different answers.
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i definitely think as students get older they realize it's close to really being able to vote. they have the tools to engage in the election cycle. >> at this time we engage students as much as possible, every candidate is asked to provide top priorities for young people. how they would include young people in their administration in city government. then they are asked short essay questions all different issues and they provide responses. you know talking and showing it to students and going over with them. you get a sense which candidates they like. >> what do young people walk
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away from this? >> two things, we hope. a lifelong participation in voting and at the high school, they are graduating having participated in elections. they are taking into adulthood. 18-30-year-olds that is a long term goal. and making sure the young people have a piece of the pie. by the voter handbooks, talking to them and have an engagement in the system. so try to give adults a little idea what kids are thinking about. >> thank you so much. thank you for being here today. >> we do have to take another break but we'll continue to about
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welcome back. i'm cheryl jejs. today we're talking about the upcoming november local elections and making sure underserved communities are included. an independent panel is under attack. republican opponents filed papers for a ballot initiative that would toss out those new districts. nannette miranda filed this report from sacramento. >> these are the congressional districts. >> no more lines drawn by
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politicians to try to save seats that critics say contribute to the gridlock. they are redrawing all congressional districts in california, already ar did you mean seeks to invalidate it. >> when it came to the senate, they created these unwieldy and frankly unconstitutional districts. >> that uncertainty leads party insiders shaking in their boots. >> common cause thinks the referendum is how fear fpl the political establishment is of losing power. democrats could get two-thirds majority. >> there are a lot of people that are so used to it, they have been able to win in this game of redistricting. >> republican tony quinn has drawn lines from the 70s and 80s
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he believes the referendum makes a good zblargt it was clearly partisan games playing in the drawing of the district lines in the central coast. you had two marginal republican districts and suddenly you had two democratic ones. >> they have certainly shaken up the political establish zbly if they get 5,000 signatures, voters will have a chance to tahoe throw out the new lines and have the court redraw them. >> they want everything is transparent but meanwhile, the maps could be under a federal lawsuit. the number of latino districts was reduced from san jose and silicon valley and san diego. in the studio with me is eddie garcia president of latino leadership alliance.
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you had a role in this? >> absolutely. 23rd assembly district, it's been attacked 50 years and the commission was split into three. the latino vote, we were talking less. the commission came into san jose and we were successful in persuading that it needs to be intact and servicing okay. >> you are happy with that. tell me about the organization? >> there is about eight of us that created leadership alliance about ten years, we were in our late 30s and early 40s and thinking about latino leadership in the south bay. we realized there was no leadership at all so we wanted to make an organization, one it advocated on behalf of the latino community and made the bridge. and we call it leadership
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alliance academy and we do it with stanford university and we have a third class that has been very successful at this point. >> and you are getting the latino population to vote? >> absolutely. we look at ourselves as a growing organization in the south bay but we have relationships with numerous latino organizations with grassroots, we provide them with resources and information. our founders, state assemblywoman, city councilmember, we have a lot of influence in santa clara county in the valley. and we pass that on to nonprofits and constituents. >> for latinos, it's so important to vote? >> federal government put out a study and by mid century, 65% of
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the population will be latino in california. as in any public ven , it impacts those that follow the rules. so we need to make sure that our community registers and goes out and vote because it's going to impact their lives for the next century or more. >> how do you get them to the polls? >> we start with the schools. that is where it's really important. school board races, most people don't pay attention to, that is most important on latino families. education funding is the biggest issue. once we let folks know that your schools can get better, when better funding and better programs, things improve very fast. >> latino leadership academy ha? tell me about that? >> we wanted to create a new bench of latino leaders.
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we take people that are excited about the community and take them through a six month program that cull any niath with two nights with thousands of renowned professors at stanford university talking about latino issues. so it's not ideological. we don't have an agenda but it's about putting leadership follows in their toolbox. >> find us at info at loochbtd send me an e-mail and we'll get an application out there. >> and you are also on facebook? >> yes. >> all right. we're out of time but special thanks to all of our guests for the edition of "beyond the headlines". we have more information at our website. you can find us on facebook at
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abc7 community affairs and also on twitter. i'm cheryl jennings. thank you so much for joining us. please remember to register and vote. have a great week and we'll see you next time. [ female announcer ] these are the grands! biscuits you love with dinner. and these are the ones you'll love as dinner. grandsmini pizzas. grands! biscuit dough... plus 3 ingredients make an easy dinner everyone loves. grands! mini pizzas... from pillsbury. ♪ start your morning a whole new way! ♪ ♪ pillsbury grands! biscuits ♪ filled with breakfast ingredients ♪ ♪ ready in minutes! ♪ you gotta taste...mmmm a brand new morning ♪ [ female announcer ] new pillsbury grands! biscuit sandwiches.
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