Recorder's Notes by Pamela Bacon, Logan County Clerk and Recorder
Colorado Presidential Primary March 3, 2020
Colorado is holding its first Presidential Primary since 2000 on March 3, 2020. Active eligible electors will automatically be mailed a ballot approximately 22 days before the election. The ballot you receive in the mail is your official election ballot.
What is a Presidential Primary? Presidential Primaries are ways political parties select their nominees for President.
Who are we voting for in a Presidential Primary?
- The names of the presidential candidates will be on the ballot.
- We are actually voting for delegates to the national conventions.
- Vice president is not on the ballot.
- Both major political parties officially nominate their candidate for president at their national conventions.
- Each of these conventions are made up of delegates selected in accordance with the party’s bylaws.
- The results of the presidential primaries (and caucuses) bind many of these delegates to vote for a particular candidate.
Caucus vs. Primary
- Some states have primaries to elect delegates to the national party convention.
- Primaries are direct elections run by the county clerks and the results are used to determine delegates.
- Some states have a caucus that elects delegates to the national party convention.
- Caucus are people from the same party gathering to elect delegates to a convention.
- Caucuses can also be people going to the places set up by political parties and voting for candidates that determine the delegates.
NOTE: Colorado’s political parties will still hold caucuses for other statewide and county offices.
In Colorado Unaffiliated voters CAN participate and vote in the March 3, 2020 Presidential Primary Election but CANNOT participate in the party caucus.
Who can vote in the March 3, 2020 Presidential Primary Election?
- Voters affiliated with a major party: May cast at ballot for candidates of the party they are affiliated with.
- Voters affiliated with a minor party: if there is a minor party contest those affiliated with that minor party may cast a ballot for those candidates.
- Unaffiliated voters: An unaffiliated voter may cast a ballot for any one political party. If an unaffiliated voter returns a ballot with more than one major political party, the ballot will be rejected and none of the votes will be counted.
Why did Colorado go back to holding a Presidential Primary?
- Colorado held its last presidential primary in 2000. The Presidential Primaries were abandoned because of the cost, in favor of party caucuses, which typically draw fewer eligible voters. State estimates the March 3, 2020 Presidential Primary to cost 6.26 million dollars.
- Voters approved Proposition 107, in the 2016 election. 64.9% voted yes and 35.9% voted no.
- The statute allows for unaffiliated voters to participate in the presidential primaries.
- In the caucus process in Colorado, only registered members of the political party can participate.
The Election and Recording Department can be reached at 522-1544 for voter and election questions or recording information. The Motor Vehicle Department can be reached at 522-1158 for license plates/renewals or titling a vehicle. You can also reach our office by email at firstname.lastname@example.org . Like us on Facebook at Logan County Elections/MotorVehicle/Recording or Twitter @LoganClerkCO