November 3, 2020 Ballot Prop. 20

Proposition 20: Changes to Criminal Sentencing and Parole

Official Results

Available once the California Secretary of State has certified the election. This can take up to 3 weeks or more.

Yes votes: 6,385,421 (38.3%)

No votes: 10,293,563 (61.7%)

Proposition 20 would amend parts of crime laws that were passed between 2011 and 2016, making some "petty theft" crimes punishable as felonies. The measure would make changes to the release consideration process, requiring the parole board to consider additional factors before deciding on release. The measure requires state and local police to collect DNA samples from adults convicted of certain misdemeanors, not just felonies. These crimes include shoplifting, forging checks, and certain domestic violence crimes.

Voter Information

Public Opinion

Non-Partisan Resources

Pro/Con Statements

Supporters claim that the measure will increase public safety by increasing the number of crimes that should be included when restricting parole for some offenders. They claim making certain kinds of theft and fraud chargeable as felonies will help curb serial theft and get drug addicts into treatment in a prison setting. Finally, they believe that DNA collection on those convicted of misdemeanors will help solve a wider variety of serious crimes.
Opponents of claim that the measure is a dishonest attempt to increase spending on prisons during a time of economic crisis. They say re-categorizing some misdemeanors to felonies is extreme and regressive. They contend that the measure will cut funding for victim trauma programs while possibly cutting rehabilitation measures which have a proven track record.