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Utah GrassRoots 2015 Legislative Report Addendum—SB43Substitute
SB43Substitute, “Closed Primary Amendments”, sponsored by Senator Jenkins and Representative Fred Cox, would have provided that, for the 2016 primary elections only, a registered political party that chooses to become a qualified political party would select the party's nominees using, initially, only the convention process, and would participate in the primary process only to the extent that the qualified political party designated more than one nominee for one office to participate in the primary process.
In other words, it would largely continue to allow the caucus/convention system that has existed for years to continue through the 2016 primary elections, SB54 of the 2014 General Legislative Session (hereafter “2014-SB54), notwithstanding. (2014-SB54 prescribed that a “qualified political party” must allow certain candidates to appear as its candidates on a primary ballot, regardless of the results of its caucus/convention process.) Under SB43Substitute, the most controversial provisions of 2014-SB54 would not become effective until 2017.
2014-SB54 is being challenged in the courts, and the results of this challenge are not yet known. Meeting the requirements of 2014-SB54 in such a short time poses significant challenges to various party organizations (both state and county). And, as we at GrassRoots argued last year concerning 2014-SB54, government interference in the workings of a political party, to prescribe who will be that party’s candidate(s), is unwarranted. We stand by our opposition to 2014-SB54. GrassRoots favors a “yes” vote on SB43Substitute.
SB43Substitute failed the Senate 9-19 on February 24th.
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