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California Popular-Vote Measure To Start Signature Gathering

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio / File

File: Voters choose their candidates at the polls during an election in 2014.

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio / File

(AP) - Supporters of a California proposition asking if the president should be elected by popular vote have cleared the first hurdle to getting on the 2018 ballot.

The California Secretary of State's office announced Monday that proponents of the measure can begin gathering signatures from registered voters. They must collect nearly 366,000 signatures to put the issue on the ballot.

The initiative would not change any laws. It would simply ask voters if California elected officials should advocate for reforms such as a federal constitutional amendment to end the Electoral College process.

Interest in issues surrounding the Electoral College surged last year when Donald Trump won the presidency but lost the popular vote by about 3 million votes.