The California Civic Engagement Project (CCEP)
at the UC Davis Center for Regional Change
CCEP Newsletter
February 16, 2017

Dear CCEP colleagues, partners and friends:

Welcome to the first Engage! of 2017, we hope you had a wonderful Valentine's Day and that the wet weather hasn't dampened your spirits.  We are resolved to keep bringing you non-alternative facts and not fake news on the latest in civic engagement in California and beyond, and to continue our work towards a more representative democracy.

In this issue, we feature a success story on California teens getting real-world civic engagement experience, a video presentation on the latest California voter turnout data from the 2016 presidential election, an op-ed on interference in the 2016 elections process, links to statewide and national civic engagement news articles, and more!

And remember, you can follow the CCEP on Facebook and Twitter to stay informed between our newsletters.  Doing something interesting that we should share in Engage?  Drop us a line, we would love to hear about your civic engagement related stories and efforts. 
In partnership,  

Mindy Romero, Ph.D.
CCEP Director

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California Civic Engagement Success Story
California Teens Gain Real-World Civic Engagement Experience 

High School students in California will have greater access to real-world experiences in civic engagement thanks to our state's new history and social science guidelines for public schools.  A new History-Social Sciences Framework was approved by the California Board of Education in July.  

"Civics to me is just an abbreviated form of leadership training," said California Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, who helped craft the History-Social Science Framework for the state's public schools. "If you know how the world around you works and how decisions are made, and you work together collaboratively, you know how to become a change agent."
CCEP Spotlight
CCEP Intern Joseph Barry Accepted into CSUS Doctoral Program

We are excited to congratulate CCEP Senior Intern Joseph Barry on his acceptance into the Sacramento State Doctorate in Educational Leadership Program.  Joseph has been an intern with the CCEP since May of 2015, and his research assistance has been invaluable.  We wish him well and know that he will succeed in this new endeavor, and are happy that he will remain in the area.  
Watch Dr. Romero's Presentation on Voter Turnout & Voting Disparities in the 2016 Presidential Election

Dr. Romero presented new CCEP data on voter turnout in California's 2016 presidential election on January 27th at the state capitol and on January 31st at the U.C. Center in Sacramento.  Did we see a big increase in Latino or youth turnout in California?  Find out by watching this video of Dr. Romero's presentation at the state capitol.

You can also download a copy of Dr. Romero's slides from her January 27th research presentation HERE.   
Upcoming Events
Future of California Elections
2017 Conference March 9th

Are you interested in modernizing elections and expanding participation in California's democracy?  If so, you might want to make plans to attend the Future of California Elections Conference,  Advancing Elections: Moving our Democracy Forward ,  which will take place on March 9th at the California Endowment in Los Angeles. This conference will include dynamic panel discussions, networking with peers in the election field including election administrators , community organizations, and reform advocates. The focus is the needs of California's diverse voters and the importance of working in partnerships to ensure all voters can participate in California's democracy.  To register, view the conference program and learn more CLICK HERE.

Davenport Institute Seeks California Grad and Undergrad Students for Citizens' Initiative Review Panel March 5-7

The Davenport Institute for Public Engagement and Civic Leadership is partnering with Healthy Democracy to demonstrate the power of deliberation in our California Initiative Process.  They are seeking California graduate or undergraduate students who would like to be a part of a project to demonstrate the power of democracy, earn a $100 Amazon gift card, and spend a few days in Malibu. 

A panel of 18-24 voters from California Universities will hear directly from a ballot measure's supporters and opponents as well as independent experts. During the process, panelists will deliberate on what they've learned in order to fairly evaluate the measure. At the conclusion of the Review, the panel will present its findings in a 'Citizens' Statement.'

Participating students will receive a $100 Amazon gift card in compensation for their time, will be provided meals, and will be reimbursed for travel expenses.

To learn more or apply to be a panelist, CLICK HERE  

CALPIRG students lobbying state legislators in March of 2016 to support the ban on single use plastic bags.
Legislative Action Day March 5-6

CALPIRG's annual lobby day is coming up! This year, CALPIRG is planning to bring over 100 UC students from across the state to the capital to speak directly with the legislators that represent us. CALPIRG has set up dozens of meetings to talk about the issues that students care so much about including fracking, clean energy, bees, and the high cost of higher education. The two day event will consist of a day of lobby training at UC Davis on March 5th, followed by a day with state legislators in Sacramento March 6th.
To learn more, contact Nicole at

California Civic Engagement News
Record Spending on  California Propositions

A Feb. 1 article by Angela Hart and Jim Miller in the Sacramento Bee gives updated details of record spending on 2016's 17 ballot measures.  Newly released data show  $485 million in spending by dozens of campaign committees that supported or opposed measures on the Nov. 8 ballot.
CalExit Ballot Measure Begins Collecting Signatures

California's Attorney General has cleared a citizens' ballot initiative for circulation that could be the first step in a long-shot bid to make the Golden State an independent nation. If approved by voters, the measure would remove language from the state constitution describing California as "an inseparable part of the United States of America" and require the governor to request admission for California to the United Nations.

The proponent of the initiative appears to be  taking an unusual approach to collecting the 585,407 signatures necessary to have it appear on the 2018 ballot. Instead of paying professional signature gatherers, the campaign intends to depend on volunteers. They number almost 7,000 people so far according to proponent Marcus Evans, a former conservative radio talk-show host from Fresno. 

California Lawmakers Take Steps to Protect the Rights of Immigrants

California state legislators are working on  bills that would create a statewide sanctuary for people in the country illegally, provide money to pay lawyers for immigrants facing deportation and hamper any attempt to create a Muslim registry.  

National Civic Engagement News
Assertions of Voter Fraud in the November Election are False 

You may have heard the President's assertion that millions of non-citizens voted in the November election.  Not true, according to many elections experts, as explained in this well researched story from the NY Times by Nicholas Fandos.  The claim has been debunked repeatedly by bipartisan fact-checkers.  The article describes where the idea originated, offering a window into how flawed data and poorly designed research can provide misleading results.  

President Trump also alleged in a meeting with a bipartisan group of senators last week that thousands of people from Massachusetts voted illegally in New Hampshire.  On Sunday, senior white house adviser Stephen Miller said on ABC News that busing voters into New Hampshire is widely known and very serious.  Neither the President nor his adviser have presented any evidence of such voter fraud, and the New Hampshire attorney general and secretary of state have not been able to find any.  Former Republican state chairman Steve Duprey wrote on Twitter, "there is no voter fraud in NH. None. Zip. Nada."  For more in-depth coverage of the Trump administration's false claims of voter fraud, historical context and reactions from public officials and elections experts, read this article in the Washington Post by Glenn Kessler. 
The Real Story on Fake News

A recent article in the New York Times by Amanda Taub explains how partisan bias fuels the "fake news" phenomenon.  " Partisan tribalism makes people more inclined to seek out and believe stories that justify their pre-existing partisan biases, whether or not they are true," Taub writes.  

Read the full article here
Support Real News!

We would like to take a moment to remind you, dear reader, that now more than ever, American journalists and news organizations that are investigating and reporting the facts need our support.  

Please consider purchasing an online subscription to your favorite newspaper, or making a donation to your local public radio or television station.  

Thank you for supporting the free press!
CCEP Outreach: In the Media
New Research Publication on California's Uneven Electoral Landscape

A new article in the winter issue of the National Civic League's National Civic Review by CCEP Director Mindy Romero and Jonathan Fox presents evidence of dramatic under-representation of young adults in California's electorate.  The article includes an analysis of new geographical information system (GIS) mapping data that illustrate the geographic disparities in total and young adult voter turnout around the state.  Read more in the National Civic Review.

It Wasn't Only Russians Who Interfered in American Democracy in 2016

An op-ed piece written by Dr. Romero for the Sacramento Bee points out that it wasn't just the Russians who interfered with America's democratic process in the 2016 presidential election. She discusses voter suppression in the November election.

CCEP Voter Turnout Data Featured on ABC 10 News

A February 13 story on ABC 10 News (Sacramento) featured CCEP data on statewide voter turnout from the November 2016 election.  Over 40% of eligible voters didn't turn out to vote in the last election, although the turnout was the second highest in 30 years.  

To see the full story and explore a presentation on the latest CCEP California voter data, CLICK HERE

Using Interactive Maps to Visualize Voter Turnout Data

Dr. Romero's comments on the value of interactive maps that visualize voter turnout data are featured in an article published January 21st in the Topeka Capitol Journal.  And you thought we weren't in Kansas anymore!   Read more in the Capitol Journal Online.  

How Will the New Motor Voter Law Impact California's Electorate?

Later this year, a new "Motor Voter" law will begin to register people to vote when they get or renew their California driver's license at the DMV. How will this impact our state's electorate?  CCEP data is cited in this article by Chiqui Cartegena published recently in Capitol Weekly. 
Share Your Civic Engagement Story with the CCEP

UC Davis California Civic Engagement Project

CCEP Advisory Committee

Kim Alexander
President and Founder  
California Voter Foundation 

Matt A. Barreto
Professor, Dept. of Political Science
Professor, Dept. of Chicana/o Studies
University of California, Los Angeles

Jonathan Fox
School of International Service
American University  
Luis R. Fraga 
Arthur Foundation Endowed Professor of Transformative Latino Leadership
Professor of Political Science University of Notre Dame
Lisa Garcia Bedolla
Chancellor's Professor of Education and Political Science
University of California, Berkeley
Bruce Haynes
Associate Professor, Dept. of Sociology University of California, Davis
Jongho Lee
Dept. of Political Science
Western Illinois University  

Peter Levine 
Associate Dean for Research and Lincoln Filene Professor of Citizenship & Public Affairs,  Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life, Tufts University
Matt Mahan
Cofounder and CEO

James Muldavin
Executive Director
California Center for Civic Participation and Youth Development
Karthick Ramakrishnan
Professor of Public Policy
University of California, Riverside
Ricardo Ramirez
Associate Professor, Dept. of Political Science
University of Notre Dame

J ason Reece
Assistant Professor of Land Use Planning and Law
The Ohio State University
Cruz Reynoso
Professor of Law Emeritus
University of California, Davis
Dan Schnur
Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics
University of Southern California
 Shakari Byerly
 Partner and Lead Researcher

California Civic Engagement Project
UC Davis Center for Regional Change
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