By Faye Higbee
The state of California will no longer allow “no party preference” voters to press the button for Republicans in the presidential primary election next year. That’s 5.6 million voters. The Sacramento Bee reports:
The California Secretary of State’s Office announced Monday that three parties will have primaries open to those who listed their political affiliation as “no party preference:” the Democratic Party, the Libertarian Party and the American Independent Party.
The Republican Party, the Green Party and the Peace and Freedom Party require voters to be registered with their party in order to vote in their primaries. They do not allow so-called cross-over voting.
“As we enter the fifth election cycle under the ‘Top Two Primary’ system, California voters have become increasingly accustomed to voting for the candidates of their choice regardless of political party preference,” Secretary of State Alex Padilla said in prepared remarks. “The presidential primary, however, remains the exception. Voters registered as ‘no party preference’ have the option of requesting a ballot that includes presidential candidates of a political party that allows ‘cross-over’ voting.”
Voters who list themselves as “no party preference” will continue to receive a card asking them to choose the party ballot they intend to vote for — but Republican will no longer be an option.
Up until now, California has maintained a free-for-all primary voting system, permitting voters to cast a vote whomever they choose regardless of party because all ballots are the same.
An legislative earlier attempt by the Golden State to keep Donald Trump off the ballot entirely was blocked by a federal judge. However, the case has been referred to the Supreme Court, which has yet to render a determination. Whether the sitting president will be on the California ballot is still up in the air.
The California primary is set for March 3. Mail-in voting begins on Feb 3, and the deadline for ballots to reach Sacramento is March 6.
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Cross posted at Conservative Firing Line