It’s Super Tuesday: Your guide to the California Primary

California: Get ready for your close-up.

Long viewed as a cash-rich afterthought on the presidential campaign trail, the country’s largest state will finally have an early say in who will win each political party’s presidential nomination — and by extension, who will occupy the White House come January 2021.

Californians now get to vote on March 3. For those who vote by mail (most voters these days), they may get their chance to cast a ballot a month earlier. That means that while candidates and much of the national press corps are crowding into Iowa to see how the first-in-the-nation presidential contest shakes out, Californians — with more delegates to award than any other state — will be weighing in too.

But it won’t just be presidential candidates on the ballot. Voters here will have a few other decisions to make:

  • To sign off on the current makeup of the state Legislature — or to push state governance in a different direction
  • To affirm the gains of the Democratic sweep of California’s congressional delegation — or to rollback 2018’s “blue wave”
  • To sign off on billions of new spending on school construction — or to say no to more borrowing

If you’re confused about what’s at stake in this election, which races to watch or how to vote, consider this guide your one-stop-shop.

Find the answers to your election questions here. Have more questions? Be sure to ask us with the form below.

Latest in Election 2020

California is revisiting whether to restore affirmative action policies for public schools and universities, as well as state jobs and contracts. Image via iStock

Election 2020

Is now the time to bring back affirmative action in California?

The coronavirus pandemic has accelerated California's move to an all vote-by-mail election option. Photo via iStock

Election 2020

Not if, but how: California prepares for an all vote-by-mail election in November

California mail-in ballot on Super Tuesday 2020. Photo illustration by Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters

Election 2020

Politics in the pandemic: Two California elections in May provide a preview

Sen. Bernie Sanders's won the California primary, but California didn't matter much in the march to a Democratic nominee. Here Sanders at a February campaign event at the Craneway Pavilion in Richmond. Photo by Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters

Election 2020

Vote update: How big was Bernie’s win and the California primary’s loss?

Empty shelves of toilet paper and paper towels at Safeway in the Fillmore neighborhood of San Francisco on March 13, 2020. On Thursday Gov. Gavin Newsom issued an executive order banning events of more than 250 people amid coronavirus concerns. Photo by Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters

Election 2020

Californians realize it may take three months or longer before life gets back to normal, poll shows

Voters including Dave Ade of San Jose, right, fill out their ballots on Nov. 6, 2018, at The Salvation Army in San Jose. Photo by Dai Sugano, Bay Area News Group

Election 2020

One upside of the coronavirus shutdown, maybe? Fewer voter initiatives