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More Access to Primary Balloting to be Determined in November Election

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Measures to Restore Presidential Primary and Change Primary Elections

Make November Ballot

DENVER, Aug. 24, 2016 — Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams announced today that two separate ballot measures, one restoring a presidential primary and the other making it easier for unaffiliated voters to participate in primary elections, will be on the November ballot.

Initiative No. 98 allows unaffiliated voters to participate in primary elections without having to declare being a member of a certain party, as is the current law. However, Republicans and Democrats could decide to forgo having a primary election and instead choose their general election nominees at the assembly or convention, providing that 75 percent of the party’s state central committee agrees.

Initiative No. 140 restores a presidential primary to be held before the end of March in presidential election years, and allows unaffiliated voters to participate without declaring to be a member of a political party.

Both measures amend state law, rather than the state constitution. They bring to seven the number of citizen initiatives that Colorado voters will consider on Nov. 8.

Backers of the presidential primary and the presidential election bill turned in their petitions on Aug. 8. A 5-percent random sample of the submitted signatures projected the number of valid signatures to be greater than 110 percent of the total number of signatures required for placement on the ballot.

Petition verification summary for No. 98:

Total number of qualified signatures submitted – 147,707
5% of qualified signatures submitted (random sample) – 7,386
Total number of entries accepted (valid) from the random sample – 5,425
Total number of entries rejected (invalid) from the random sample – 1,961
Number of projected valid signatures from the random sample – 108,490
Total number of signatures required for placement on ballot – 98,492
Projected percentage of required valid signatures – 110.15%

Petition verification summary for No. 140:

Total number of qualified signatures submitted – 152,213
5% of qualified signatures submitted (random sample) – 7,611
Total number of entries accepted (valid) from the random sample – 5,486
Total number of entries rejected (invalid) from the random sample – 2,125
Number of projected valid signatures from the random sample – 109,715
Total number of signatures required for placement on ballot – 98,492
Projected percentage of required valid signatures – 111.39%

The Colorado Secretary of State’s Office is still tabulating the final two citizen measures that were turned in: No. 75, giving local government the authority to regulate oil-and-gas development, and No. 78, expanding setback requirements for new oil-and-gas development.

The other citizen proposals approved for the Nov. 8 ballot are: ColoradoCare, Minimum Wage, Medical Aid in Dying, Amending the Constitution and New Cigarette and Tobacco Taxes.

Also on the ballot are two measures referred by the Colorado General Assembly: Amendment T, regarding servitude, and Amendment U, regarding property taxes. In addition, the Denver Metro Scientific and Cultural Facilities Board put Ballot Issue 4B, a sales-and-use tax measure, on ballots in the following metro counties: Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Boulder, Denver, Douglas (except Castle Rock and Larkspur) and Jefferson.

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