Our Generation has the Power in August and November!
Elections can be overwhelming, but young people who pledge to vote with Engage are 11% more likely to turn out and cast their ballots. We send you reminders, information on your voting rights and how to vote, and voter guides that break down where candidates stand on the issues that matter most.
In August, expect elections for nonpartisan local races in which everyone can participate, and closed primaries for Governor, US Senate, Congressional races and more, in which only voters registered with the party of their choice can participate. You must be registered to vote 29 days before an election in Florida.
Closed Primaries: For nonpartisan races such as School Board and County Commission, all registered voters may cast ballots in August. Florida has what are called ‘closed’ primaries’, so for partisan primary races such as Governor, US Senate, and legislative positions, voters must be registered with a party to cast their ballot in the primaries so you can increase the power of your vote by updating your voter registration with the party affiliation of your choice. Some races have already been decided as only one candidate filed. County Commission and School Board races will be decided in August, but if no candidate receives a majority of the vote, run offs will be held in November during the General Election.
What’s going to be on my ballot in 2022?
- U.S. Senate
- U.S. Congressional Representatives (all districts)
- Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Chief Financial Officer, and Commissioner of Agriculture
- State Senators and State House of Representatives (all districts)
Miami-Dade County Offices
- Board of County Commissioners (Districts 2, 6, 8, 10, 12),
- School Board Members (Districts 2, 4, 6, 8)
- South Dade Water & Conservation (Districts 1, 3, 5)
- County Court and Circuit Judges
Important Midterm and Local Elections are happening, and our generation can make the difference at the ballot box. The issues we care about are on the line and our futures are at stake. Primaries and Local Elections are August 23, and the General Election is November 8, with early voting and vote-by-mail available before the actual election dates.
Gen Z and millennials have the power to decide important races from school board to Congress. In fact, Florida has been ranked as a top ten state with the largest potential for youth voters to impact both gubernatorial and US Senate elections in 2022. Last time Florida had midterm elections in 2018, important races were decided by razor thin margins. Turnout in the 2018 August Primary was only 27% of registered voters and turnout in the 2018 November General Election was 63%, but South Florida and young voters turned out at lower rates than the state as a whole, so we have to change that to decide our own future.
You must be registered to vote 29 days before an election in Florida. If you’re not eligible to vote due to age, not having voting rights restored, or citizenship status, use this information to help your friends and family who are eligible get ready to hit the ballot box in August and November! Want to get more involved? Volunteer with us and we’ll contact you to share all the details.
Wait, what happened in the last few florida elections?
FL Governor, US Senate, and Congressional Elections
- In the 2018 governor’s race, current Governor Ron DeSantis (R) defeated candidate Andrew Gillum (D) by 32,468 votes, or just .4%.
- For the US Senate election in 2018, former FL Governor Rick Scott (R) defeated incumbent Bill Nelson (D) by only 10,033 votes, or .12% of 8.2 million votes cast in a state with more than 20 million residents.
- Turnout in the 2018 August Primary was only 27% of registered voters and turnout in the 2018 November General Election was 63%, but South Florida and young voters turned out at lower rates than the state as a whole, so we have to change that to decide our own future!
- Congressional races have also been very close: In 2018, in District 27 (now redrawn) Donna Shalala (D) defeated Maria Elvira Salazar (R) by 15,155 votes but Maria Elvira Salazar then won the race for Congressional District 27 in 2020 and now serves in congress – she will be an incumbent in 2022. Also in 2018 Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D) defeated incumbent Carlos Curbelo (R) by 4,119 votes in Congressional District 26, with the district then won by former Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez (R) in 2020, who will also be on the ballot this year.
- In 2022 districts were redrawn after the 2020 census, and everyone is up for election to serve in U.S. House of Representatives and the State Legislature again.
- In 2018 Florida voters passed Amendment 4, to return voting rights to returning citizens, or those who have previously been charged and convicted of a felony. Unfortunately state legislation has complicated the process of restoring voting rights to these citizens. You can go to the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition to learn more and access resources.
- In 2020, we passed Amendment 2, increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour over the next several years, as well as multiple other important constitutional changes.
What’s new this year?
- Every single seat for FL House and FL Senate and US House will be on the ballot this year. In 2020, we participated in the US Census, and this legislative cycle all the districts – from Congressional down to school board districts – have been redrawn in the redistricting process.
- Voters passed term limits affecting the Miami-Dade County Commission in 2012, so now very few current elected commissioners are eligible to run again, meaning we’re electing a whole slate of new leadership for our important county commission, which controls local housing policy, county policing, climate adaptation, local infrastructure, and a $9 billion county budget. Even numbered County Commission seats are up for election in 2022, with nonpartisan elections held in August and runoffs in November.
What about my local city council and mayor?
Well – it’s complicated. Every municipality has its own date for elections, so check the department of elections website to find out when your city votes. If you live in unincorporated Miami-Dade, the County Commission is your most immediate local government, but there are over 30 municipalities in the county with their own city council, mayor, and election dates. In 2021, elections were held in the City of Miami, Miami Beach, Homestead, and Hialeah. Turnout was less than 15% in the City of Miami but only 5% of voters 18-35 turned out – although turnout for young voters who received our voter guide was 17%! In 2020 we also elected new County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava, with the next election for that seat in 2024.
For Miami-Dade voters: You can check your voter registration status, update your vote-by-mail request, and track your mail ballot here. When sample ballots are available, you can see your ballot in advance here.