Voting booth quick reference guide

We are going to make this short and sweet for those headed to the ballot box on Tuesday, Nov. 8. If you missed our election issue with our more thorough endorsement explanations, click here. Otherwise, here is a brief overview and our choices for Election 2016. To find your polling place, go to recorder.countyofventura.org/elections.

President

The United States has reached an especially critical emotional apex that has remained unmatched since, perhaps, the election of Abraham Lincoln. With this election season, we have seen the populace melt down into two radical facets: one that has absolute faith in a billionaire businessman and the other that staunchly believes in the capability of a lifelong politician. On the outskirts of these radicalized groups, there are those who hate both and are willing to “vote their conscience,” seemingly disregarding the two-party system and the fact that their votes will mean nothing — except that they may unintentionally help in the election of Trump.  If Trump wins because so many cast their votes for essentially nonrelevant candidates, the U.S. as a world player will be set back eons and be a joke on the world stage. Even the stock market is currently showing signs of instability as the likelihood of Trump winning increases. Investors are not fond of volatility.

It is clear that there is no turning back for many Trump supporters, but despite what the undecided voter hates about Hillary Clinton, her handling of Benghazi , the email “scandals,” the concerns about big donors to the Clinton Foundation, all of these issues will pale in comparison should Trump become commander in chief, a man who has cheated, hurt and deceived so many and has divided an entire nation, minimizing the value of so many groups of people, implying that his supporters should resort to violence to get what they want while spewing mainly nonsensical rhetoric. It’s bewildering that this sort of maniacal behavior has so much backing. But then again, this is the truth of who so many are at the core. With the latest polls showing a tight race, and a couple of them showing Trump coming out ahead, now is not the time to be voting for a nonelectable candidate.

At this critical junction, with just a few days to go before our votes are counted and a new president is decided, voting for a candidate who will never win will hurt us all. We must stop Trump.

Vote for Hillary Clinton.

U.S. Senator

We need more environment and social justice stewards in Congress. Vote for Kamala Harris.

26th Congressional District

We have an advocate in office for affordable health care, women’s rights, veteran benefits, gun control measures, better education, etc. Let’s keep her there.

Vote for Julia Brownley.

19th State Senatorial District

State politicians should be in pursuit of a better quality of life for all California residents — and the 19th Senate District already has such representation.

Vote for Hannah-Beth Jackson.

27th State Senatorial District

We need dedicated leaders to protect our environment. The only choice: Vote for Henry Stern.

37th Assembly District

Looking for someone who is homegrown and committed to public service?

Vote for S. Monique Limon

44th Assembly District

Go-getters are hard to find so let’s keep in office those who are dedicated to improving quality of life.

Vote for Jacqui Irwin.

Ventura County Supervisor, third district

Carla Castilla has the experience to understand the inner workings of bureaucracy. She’s a good fit and her potential predecessor, Supervisor Kathy Long, endorses her.

Vote for Carla Castilla.

OXNARD

Mayor

Oxnard continues to struggle with top leadership turnover and disgruntled departments. Time to try something (or rather someone) different. Vote for Miguel Lopez.

City Council

Oxnard needs to keep open-minded yet critical and concerned leaders — Vote for Bryan MacDonald.

Having experience in both government and private business dealings makes for a valuable perspective on City Council — Vote for Steve Huber.

City Clerk

Having extensive experience as a city clerk should not be overlooked — Vote for Michelle Ascension.

Port Hueneme

City Council

Time for a new voice on the City Council, especially one who has a longtime working relationship with the city and the port.

Vote for Will Berg.

Ventura

City Council

If you are happy with the decisions made and direction taken in the recent past, vote for the incumbents: Christy Weir and Cheryl Heitmann 

If you feel it’s time for a new direction, then vote for new leadership: Matt LaVere and Dave Grau

Ventura

Unified School Board

Students need advocates, those who not only say they care but show it. There are two clear choices.

Vote for Sabrena Rodriquez and Don Wood.­

State Propositions

Proposition 51

Sounds good for school construction but this prop is just too complicated.

Vote No on Proposition 51.

Proposition 52

Requires two-thirds votes in the legislature over hospital fees, muddled in confusing language.

Vote No on Proposition 52.

Proposition 53

Requires voter approval for pricey projects but we elect legislators to represent us and make these sorts of decisions. Let’s let the legislators do their jobs.

Vote No on Proposition 53.

Proposition 54

Lawmakers’ bills would have to be posted 72 hours before voting on them. For the sake of transparency, vote Yes on Proposition 54.

Proposition 55

Taxing the rich to keep education vibrant for all kids seems fair enough.

Vote Yes on Proposition 55.

Proposition 56

Tobacco is seriously harmful. So if we want fewer people to smoke, then driving up prices ($2 per pack to go toward health care and education) is a good way to do it.

Vote Yes on Proposition 56.

Proposition 57

Statewide, law enforcement has relayed that rewarding shorter sentences for inmates’ good behavior is a bad idea but we disagree.

Vote Yes on Proposition 57.

Proposition 58

Bring back bilingual education for struggling English-learners. English submersion is a failed experiment.

Vote Yes on Proposition 58.

Proposition 59

Hate the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling? Prove it and vote Yes on Proposition 59.

Proposition 60

Adult porn actors are capable of making their own decisions about their health. Stop worrying about them and start looking at why there is so much demand.

Vote No on Proposition 60.

Proposition 61

While the passage of this initiative may drive down state prescription costs, it may raise them for everyone else. This isn’t the right way to control costs.

Vote No on Proposition 61.

Proposition 62

Let’s be done with the barbaric death penalty.

Vote Yes on Proposition 62.

Proposition 63 

There is no need for large-capacity magazines for semi-automatic weapons, and while we are at it, let’s make it harder for criminals to buy bullets.

Vote Yes on Proposition 63.

Proposition 64

Let’s legalize marijuana and make amendments as issues arise. Also, local municipalities will still have a lot of say on the business of pot.

Vote Yes on Proposition 64.

Proposition 65

This proposition is designed to make statewide single-use plastic bag bans null and void, particularly if it gets more votes than Prop 67.

Vote No on Proposition 65.

Proposition 66

This would expedite death penalty punishment. Just say no to more death.

Vote No on Proposition 66.

Proposition 67

We need to end the proliferation of single-use plastic bags floating in our rivers, estuaries and the Pacific.

Vote Yes on Proposition 67.

Local Measures

County SOAR, Sustain VC, and City CURB and SOAR extension measures

Open space and ag land have been important cultural assets of Ventura County life. Let’s keep it that way.

Vote Yes on SOAR and CURB extension initiatives, which include measures, A, C, E, G, J, K, L, P, U and W. Note: Measures G and K extend SOAR/CURB boundaries until 2030. The others extend to 2050.

Vote No on Sustain VC, Measure F.

County of Ventura — Measure AA

Let’s help ourselves by passing this countywide half-cent sales tax measure and keeping millions of dollars local and receiving matching federal and state funds for transportation needs in VC.

Vote Yes on Measure AA.

Fillmore — Measures H and I

If Proposition 64 passes, Fillmore is ahead of the curve with these measures, enabling the city to tax pot-related businesses.

Vote Yes on Measure H and Measure I.

Fillmore Unified School District — Measure V

Fillmore Unified needs money to update its schools via the sale of bonds. It appears this is a first.

Vote Yes on Measure V.

Oxnard — Measure M

The passage of this measure would set a precedent in taking away the City Council’s ability to govern and raise utility rates as necessary to address problems.

Vote No on Measure M.

Oxnard School District —Measure D

Oxnard School District is asking for more money, up to $142 million in bonds, after district voters already approved $90 million in 2012.

Vote No on Measure D.

Santa Paula — Blanchard Library District Measure B

This measure is an extension of the library district’s spending limit. We think a healthy library system is good for all.

Vote Yes on Measure B.

Santa Paula — Measure T

If you think the City Council will allocate this one-cent sales tax increase properly to benefit all, vote yes. But the measure puts fire and safety first. That worries us.

Vote No On Measure T.

Ventura — Measure N

Moving the election of the mayor and deputy mayor to even years seems logical, but there is some vague language in this measure that seems problematic.

Vote No on Measure N.

Ventura — Measure O

We wish that this half-cent tax measure would target infrastructure improvements alone but the city is old and has infrastructure in need of work.

Vote Yes on Measure O.

Ventura — Measure Q

Too often too many City Councilmembers are re-elected just because of familiar names. Ventura needs fresh ideas and term limits would help.

Vote Yes on Measure Q.

Ventura Unified School District — Measure R

Ventura Unified is seeking to extend an annual parcel tax of $59. That seems fair.

Vote Yes on Measure R­.