ALL NEWS

Bill to add deadline for party switching passes Utah Legislature

Mar 4, 2021, 12:57 PM | Updated: 4:43 pm

party switching...

Michael Fife, Salt Lake County election coordinator, looks for valid postmarks on ballots at the Salt Lake County Government Center in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020. The majority of ballots in this tray were postmarked too late. Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Legislature has passed a bill that will set a deadline for party switching ahead of a primary election.  

HB 197 passed the House in February on a 41-30 vote and has now passed the state Senate on Monday with a 22-3 vote. 

The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Jordan Teuscher, R-South Jordan, said the legislation was introduced to stop “gamesmanship” from affecting a primary. Elections officials said any solid evidence of that happening is hard to find.

Salt Lake County Clerk Sherrie Swensen said it’s difficult to know for certain if party-switching has had a major impact on Utah’s primary election. But she said there was a massive infusion of new voters.

About 80,000 new voters registered before the 2020 election. Many of them in Utah registered as Republicans ahead of the closed GOP primary for the governor’s race.

Since then, Swensen said those new voters haven’t left the Republican Party.

“The number of Republican registered voters went up in that time frame but it stayed up. It isn’t like they switched back in large numbers, either,” Swenson said. 

Swensen said during the past election quite a few Republicans asked for a ballot for the Democratic presidential primary. 

“They may have just been more interested in the Democratic presidential primary because it was kind of a foregone conclusion who the nominee in the Republican presidential primary was going to be.”

The bill now awaits a signature from Gov. Spencer Cox. If signed, individuals wishing to change their party affiliation would need to do so before March 31.

RELATED:  Is it sabotage when Democrats encourage party switching ahead of  the GOP primary

 

 

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

All News

SWAT officers with the Salt Lake City Police Department stand in a driveway after they and patrol o...

Kennedy Camarena

Suspect arrested by SLCPD and SWAT after threatening medical workers with a gun

Salt Lake City Police Department and their SWAT team were able to safely arrest a man who threatened Gold Cross employees with a gun.

4 hours ago

Former President Donald Trump walks on stage during the 2024 NRB International Christian Media Conv...

Fredreka Schouten, CNN

Wisconsin ethics panel recommends criminal prosecution for a Trump fundraising committee

A Wisconsin ethics panel is recommending that prosecutors pursue charges against one of Donald Trump’s fundraising arms.

6 hours ago

Handcuffs are shown against a black background....

Alexander Campbell, ksltv

Salt Lake City man charged with credit union robbery

After the robbery of a Cyprus Credit Union in West Valley, a federal grand jury formally charged Joey Shaun Symond with the crime.  

7 hours ago

Police are investigating the scene at the University of Georgia in Athens where a nursing student w...

Rebekah Riess, Caroll Alvarado, Holly Yan and Jamiel Lynch, CNN

Suspect in death of Augusta University student found on UGA campus taken into custody

Campus police arrested a suspect in the killing of an Augusta University student on the University of Georgia campus in Athens.

8 hours ago

A lone American flag waves in the morning breeze Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2002, at the Bonneville Salt F...

Allessandra Harris

Water may be the solution to saving the salt flats

With the Bonneville Salt Flats eroding, newly discovered research may have found a way to save them.

18 hours ago

pay gap...

Curt Gresseth

Why is the gender pay gap not closing?

The gender pay gap in the U.S. and Utah is not closing. A Utah financial planner details the impact that wage shortfall can have on a women workers over a career.

19 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Mother and cute toddler child in a little fancy wooden cottage, reading a book, drinking tea and en...

Visit Bear Lake

How to find the best winter lodging in Bear Lake, Utah

Winter lodging in Bear Lake can be more limited than in the summer, but with some careful planning you can easily book your next winter trip.

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Ski more for less: Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

front of the Butch Cassidy museum with a man in a cowboy hat standing in the doorway...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking Back: The History of Bear Lake

The history of Bear Lake is full of fascinating stories. At over 250,000 years old, the lake has seen generations of people visit its shores.

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Bill to add deadline for party switching passes Utah Legislature