By Leilani Monterde, Student Ambassador, Mi Voto, Mi Futuro Campaign
While voting for the president holds the utmost importance in this year’s election, there are many other vital decisions that citizens get a say in. In Florida, voters not only have the option to vote for the president, but for municipal, county, judicial, and statewide races and measures, as well, for example:
- United States House of Representatives
- Florida State Senate
- Florida House of Representatives
- Florida Supreme Court
- Local Ballot Measures
- Local School Board, based on your county
Looking at this long list, it is clear to see that your vote has a lot of power. It is so important to take the time to research the candidates, because the people elected will be affecting your future for the next few years. As voters, we need to be making responsible decisions for the sake of our family and friends. While finding the “perfect candidate” is rare, researching who is on the ballot will help you identify – and vote for – the candidates who most closely align with your values and vision for the future.
Here are some resources to help you with that research:
- For more information on the 2020 election cycle races and candidates, please visit this page.
- You can also check out the League of Women Voters’ voter guide for:
To see a sample ballot and get an idea of what you will be voting on, based on your county of residence, visit:
The Local Ballot Measures include a variety of initiated constitutional amendments (CICA) and legislatively referred constitutional amendments (LRCA). In an initiated constitutional amendment, you will be able to vote for amendments that you would like to be approved of in your state. In a legislatively referred constitutional amendment, you will be able to actually approve or disapprove of the amendment in your state. These amendments have to do with a wide range of political issues, such as taxes, minimum wage, suffrage, elections, and direct democracy. To read more about the descriptions of each of the 6 amendments you will be able to vote on, visit: this page and/or this page.
All of this information might seem a bit overwhelming, especially for a new voter, or if you haven’t had time to research. But that is okay! While it is important to be as informed as possible – and participate in the process to your full potential- if you haven’t had the time to research the candidates and you find yourself voting on something you’re not sure of, you have the option to leave that item blank on the ballot. Your vote for everything that is correctly marked on the ballot will still be counted.
Your vote matters! The best way to confidently make it count is to prepare yourself for the polls ahead of time. You have the power to make critical decisions for your future; now is not the time to let that power go to waste! Go out and vote!
For more information about early voting, voting by mail, election day and other important deadlines and information please visit our website: unidosnow.org/vote. Don’t forget to sign our Pledge to Vote: unidosnow.org/vote/pledge-to-vote.