[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/06/08/art.arnold.gi.jpg caption ="'I think there's a mood all over the state of California that the people want reform. People want to have change,' Schwarzenegger said."]
Los Angeles (CNN) - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is urging Californians to vote in favor of a measure that aims to dramatically alter the state's primary process.
The initiative, known as Proposition 14, is on the ballot Tuesday as California holds primary elections. The measure would overhaul how primaries for statewide and congressional elections are run. Instead of candidates from the Democratic and Republican parties running in separate contests and the winners facing off in a general election, Proposition 14 would have all candidates run together in a first round of voting.
The two candidates receiving the most votes would then compete in the general election, regardless of party affiliation. Supporters say the proposition would open up the process by not restricting voters to party-line choices.
"I think there's a mood all over the state of California that the people want reform. People want to have change. Proposition 14 is one of those reforms that are very necessary," Schwarzenegger, after voting Tuesday morning in Los Angeles.
The moderate Republican governor, who is term limited and prevented from running for re-election this year, urged voters to take action: "Complaining about the stalemales in California doesn't help, but action helps. So be a reformanator, be a reformanator. Go out and vote and create the changes."
The most recent non-partisan polls conducted in the past two weeks indicate that a solid majority of California voters support Proposition 14.
Schwarzenegger and other supporters also say the measure would help moderates who face a tough time in party primaries, where conservatives and liberals often have an oversized sway on the results. But those against the initiative say that the measure will weaken the Democratic and Republican parties, and will embolden special interests.
Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @psteinhausercnn