Yesterday, the Secretary of State certified that two ballot initiatives, 98 and 140, will appear on the November ballot. Initiative 98 allows unaffiliated voters to participate in primary elections without having to be a member of a certain party. This measure would allow Republicans and Democrats to subsequently forgo having a primary election and, instead, choose candidates at an assembly or convention if 75 percent of the party’s state central committee approves. Then, Initiative 140 would require a presidential primary before the end of March during presidential election years and also would allow unaffiliateds to vote.
The presidential primary idea is intriguing. Why do political parties – which are not governmental bodies, by the way – have to allow unaffiliateds to vote in their elections? Why isn’t there an option for just a presidential primary without the unaffiliateds in the mix?
As Secretary of State Wayne Williams noted when legislators first floated this concept:
Opposed to truly open presidential primary, @ColoSecofState “As a Mormon, I dont get to vote on who the Catholic pope is.”
— Kristen Wyatt (@APkristenwyatt) April 25, 2016
Nonetheless, the two measures eked on the ballot with a projected 108,000 (Initiative 98) and 109,000 (Initiative 140) signatures.
In other news, the Secretary of State’s Office noted that no other ballot initiatives would be approved – or tossed in the case of fracking – this week. Sad. It looks like next week will be the day of reckoning for fractivists.