Deadline approaching to register to vote in Presidential Preference Election
NORTH VALLEY – Voters nationwide have many candidates campaigning for their votes in the upcoming presidential election. The Arizona Presidential Preference Election that will be taking place this March will help select the candidates chosen to represent their party in the general election.
To vote in this election, Arizona voters need to be registered to vote by Feb. 22. Voters who are registered as Independents cannot vote in this election. Per the Arizona Secretary of State’s Web site, “Only voters registered with a participating political party may vote in the PPE.”
If you are a registered Independent but would like to vote in this upcoming election, you can change your voter registration to one of the participating political parties.
“To participate in the PPE, voters would have to update their registration by February 22, 2016,” Arizona Secretary of State Communications Manager Kim Crawford wrote in an email regarding the election. “Updates to voter registration may be done easily through www.servicearizona.com, downloading a form from Arizona.vote or you may request a form from the County Recorder’s Office.”
While registered Independents may vote in primary elections, the Presidential Preference Election isn’t considered a primary, so Independents aren’t eligible to vote unless they register with one of the participating parties. The Arizona Secretary of State’s Web site defines the PPE as “strictly a preference election.”
“The PPE is a preference election, whereby registered voters of participating, recognized political parties cast their vote for who they prefer the Arizona delegates cast their vote for at their party’s national convention,” the Web site notes.
Registered Independents are eligible to vote in the primary election that will be held Aug. 30.
“For the Primary Election August 30, 2016, independent voters may participate by selecting a specific party’s ballot,” Crawford explained.
Fourteen Republican candidates have been qualified for the Arizona PPE, including Jeb Bush, Ted Cruz, Ben Carson, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Chris Christie, Donald Trump, Rick Santorum, Carly Fiorina, John Kasich, Lindsey Graham (who has since dropped out of the race), Mike Huckabee, George Pataki, and Tim Cook.
Six Democratic candidates have been qualified for the Arizona PPE, including Hillary Clinton, Roque De La Fuente, Bernie Sanders, Martin O’Malley, Henry Hewes, and Michael Steinberg.
Two Green Party candidates have been qualified for the Arizona PPE, including Kent Mesplay and Jill Stein.
Upcoming election deadlines
Feb. 22: Last day to register to vote in Presidential Preference Election
Aug. 1: Last day to register to vote in primary election
Oct. 10: Last day to register to vote in general election
See additional election information at www.azsos.gov/elections.