|Sent on:||Wednesday, July 18, 2012 8:51 PM|
As a registered voter with no political party affiliation, I had heard varied stories about my voting rights in Arizona’s primary elections. So, after part of our group discussion on Monday and to ensure I knew my rights, I wrote to the Election Services Division (ESD) and asked if I could vote in the upcoming August primary (as well as in Arizona’s Presidential primaries).
In answer I got misleading, if not incorrect, information from the Arizona Secretary of State's office and had to do a lot of additional research and ask for clarification from the Secretary of State's office to get accurate information - but I'm 99% sure I have accurate information to share. Please help to keep independent voters correctly educated by sharing the information below with other voters.
Arizona’s Open Primary Law allows independent/non-party affiliated voters to vote in Arizona general or primary elections by selecting the ballot from one of Arizona’s recognized political parties to cast their vote. However it does not allow registered non-party affiliated voters to vote in special presidential preference primaries. To vote in presidential preference primaries Arizona voters must be registered under a recognized party (i.e. Democrat, Republican, or Libertarian).
As you have just read, non-party affiliated voter privileges for Arizona's primary elections differ, and the Secretary of State's office is doing a poor job in relating this information accurately to voters. Registered non-party affiliated voters are currently the second largest voting group in Arizona. Arizonians need to know that selecting “none” as one’s party preference eliminates their voting privileges in presidential preference primary elections (as this primary is not affected by Arizona’s Open Primary Law); but that they CAN indeed vote in the upcoming August election.
Thanks for helping to share the knowledge.