2016: The End of Straight Party Voting?

Media Statement

For Immediate Release: January 7, 2015

Contact: Elizabeth Converse, Communications Director
Utah House Democratic Caucus
801-835-7087 | econverse@le.utah.gov

Bipartisan Effort to Eliminate Straight Party Ticket Voting Brought to the 2016 Legislature

Salt Lake City – Democratic Representative Patrice Arent and Republican Representative Jeremy Peterson are working together to eliminate straight party ticket voting in the 2016 legislative Session. House Bill 119 will eliminate the option on a voting ballot to mark a single box to vote for all candidates of a certain party. Only nine states allow this method of voting. No other western state uses this method for casting ballots.

Representative Arent said, “Checking one box for straight party voting causes confusion for many voters. Ballot measures, non-partisan races and propositions of all sorts can be unintentionally left out of the voting process by checking one box. Voters can skip voting for certain offices altogether if there is no person in their selected party running for a particular office. Voting is a great civic duty, and our goal is that voters do so responsibly. With more voters using mail-in ballots, it is important to eliminate this option so that all ballots are cast in all races.”

The effort mirrors a similar effort by Representative Arent in 2013. The bill text can be found by the following link: http://le.utah.gov/~2016/bills/static/HB0119.html