Sacramento, CA, April 26, 2017 (Newswire.com) - The organization that authored California's nonpartisan primary system, The Independent Voter Project (IVP), has submitted a letter in opposition to AB 837, a bill sponsored by the Secretary of State, that would leave the semi-closed primary structure in place for Presidential primaries.
IVP sponsored an unsuccessful Assembly Resolution last year calling on the Secretary of State to open the Presidential ballot to all voters as required by the California constitution, which requires an “open presidential primary."
IVP predictions of unnecessary voter confusion came true in June of 2016 when many Bernie Sanders supporters were denied an opportunity to vote in the Democratic primary despite the fact that the rules allowed them to do so.
Rather than conduct a universal or "open" primary ballot as required by the Constitution, the Secretary of State's bill would require that voter information posters be placed at Registrar of Voters offices.
IVP Co-Chair Dan Howle said, "After an election season full of totally unnecessary voter confusion, instead of addressing the voting rights issue, instead of following the Constitution, the Secretary of State is pushing a bill that will require posters be put on the wall. It is this kind of cosmetic politics that make rational voters disillusioned with politics.”
Nearly 25% of voters in California are registered as independents. The semi-closed structure is expensive and cumbersome.
IVP co-founder Steve Peace noted, “Every voter has a fundamental right to participate at all critical stages of the election process without being forced to join a political party. It is this same fundamental right of non-association that the Court recognized in Democratic Party v Jones.”
Peace and Howle will testify in Opposition to AB 837 in Sacramento on Wednesday.
IVP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan 501(c)(4) organization dedicated to better informing voters about important public policy issues and encouraging nonpartisan voters to participate in the electoral process.
Source: Independent Voter Project