Election law hasn’t changed

By Shawn Keough

Every two years, we go to the polls and elect all 105 members of the Idaho legislature. In the May primary election, we choose a candidate within our party. In the November general election, we put the party candidates up against one another to determine who will represent our legislative district.

There has been a lot of discussion this year about the GOP rules for the primary election. This past summer the Republican Party did change the party rules regarding the primary election. For example, party rules now say that a person must affiliate with the GOP by December 30th of the year preceding the election to vote the Republican ballot in the May primary.

In fact, voting in Idaho is governed by the Idaho Constitution and state law and neither has changed. The rules of a private organization do not determine the laws surrounding a public election. Party rules can be viewed as the desire of those controlling the party rule making process, but the party rule change did not change Idaho voting laws.

Unaffiliated voters, who make up a quarter of Idaho registered voters, can still show up on election day, May 21, 2024, and vote in the Republican primary. Voters affiliated with a political party in Idaho may change to a different party by the March 15, 2024, deadline.

Voter information is available at https://voteidaho.gov for registration, party affiliation and to request an absentee ballot.