Historical Vote-By-Mail (Absentee) Ballot Use in California



Data was not collected for elections which indicate "Not Available."


Vote by Mail (Absentee) Ballot Use 1962-2012
spacer Primary General
Year Mail Ballots Ballots Cast % Mail Ballots Ballots Cast %
1962 Not available 156,167 5,929,602 2.63%
1964 Not available 304,858 7,233,067 4.21%
1966 95,993 5,079,911 1.89% 218,242 6,505,067 3.35%
1968 Not available 334,365 7,363,711 4.54%
1970 100,455 5,011,908 2.00% 204,143 6,633,400 3.08%
1972 204,216 6,460,220 3.16% 405,688 8,595,950 4.72%
1974 159,831 5,128,375 3.12% Not available
1976 Not available 366,535 8,137,202 4.50%
1978 325,518 6,843,001 4.76% 314,258 7,132,210 4.41%
1980 343,875 6,774,184 5.08% 549,007 8,775,459 6.26%
1982 326,213 5,856,026 5.57% 525,186 8,064,314 6.51%
1984 418,109 5,609,063 7.45% 913,574 9,796,375 9.33%
1986 426,133 4,937,936 8.63% 685,574 7,617,142 9.00%
1988 572,057 6,037,463 9.48% 1,434,853 10,194,539 14.07%
1990 808,838 5,386,537 15.02% 1,452,139 7,899,131 18.38%
1992 1,073,071 6,440,287 16.66% 1,950,179 11,374,184 17.15%
1993 Statewide Special Election 1,156,214 5,282,443 21.89%
1994 1,011,563 4,966,827 20.37% 2,009,643 8,900,636 22.58%
1996 1,415,176 6,081,777 23.27% 2,078,065 10,263,490 20.25%
1998 1,566,882 6,202,618 25.26% 2,131,484 8,621,121 24.72%
2000 1,842,891 7,883,385 23.38% 2,732,947 11,142,843 24.53%
2002 1,378,413 5,286,204 26.08% 2,096,094 7,738,821 27.09%
2003 Statewide Special Election 2,775,785 9,413,377 29.49%
2004 2,293,321 6,684,421 34.31% 4,105,179 12,589,683 32.61%
2005 Special Statewide Election 3,183,614 7,968,757 39.95%
2006 2,471,358 5,269,142 46.90% 3,696,940 8,899,059 41.54%
2008 3,777,094 9,068,415 41.65% Early Presidential Primary Election
2008 2,671,230 4,550,227 58.71% 5,722,465 13,743,177 41.64%
2009 3,029,736 4,871,945 62.19% Statewide Special Election
2010 3,278,224 5,654,993 57.97% 4,989,852 10,300,392 48.44%
2012 3,471,570 5,328,296 65.15% 6,753,688 13,202,158 51.16%


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