No party preference voters the focus of Sanders' campaign and new legislation

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) -- With California’s primary election less than a month away, the Bernie Sanders campaign tried to reach out to voters from the State Capitol Thursday.

Sen. Sanders himself did not stop by but members from his campaign stopped by hoping to reach California’s millions of no party preference voters.

“California has never been more important in the democratic process,” said Sanders' 2020 California Director Rafael Navar.

About 5.4 million people will have to take an extra step this year to vote in California’s presidential primary election. No party preference voters must request a party ballot or re-register with a party.

“These voters matter just like any other voter. They’re the second largest bloc in the state of California,” said Navar. “They're almost 30% of the electorate. They’re bigger than the Republican Party. So, these voters are critical and that’s why we have a very targeted program to these voters.”

Meanwhile, lawmakers Thursday sent Governor Gavin Newsom the first bill of the year, which would allow voters to change their party preference or their address within two weeks of Election Day.

“We’re looking in detail at the language now, but we are definitely supportive of any efforts to make it as simple as possible for an NPP voter to show up and vote or to get a ballot if they vote by mail,” said Navar.

The legislation would go into effect immediately with Newsom’s signature.

California is already sending and collecting ballots, even with the March primary weeks away. In the meantime, Sanders' campaign said it’s putting resources into educating California voters on the process.

 

Ashley Zavala filed this report.

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