POLITICS + GOVERNMENT

Local election leaders tout Ranked Choice Voting ahead of so-called ‘No Primary Day’

Aug 6, 2021, 6:16 PM

Some elected leaders are touting Tuesday as No Primary Day.

SALT LAKE CITY — Some Utah election leaders have dubbed Tuesday as “No Primary Day” because 23 cities have opted to do ranked choice voting elections in November’s general election instead of holding a primary.

Benefits to alternative voting

At a virtual press conference Friday, the leaders argued there are several benefits to the alternative voting method.

“From the county administration perspective we’re not administering that election then in the summer, we’re only focused on the fall,” said Utah County Clerk Josh Daniels. “From a voter perspective, I think most voters are familiar with an election in November.”

He also said he believes it plays into the way voters think.

“They don’t think about it  as good versus evil, or A versus B. I think they try to compare the candidates and say, you know of all these non-partisan candidates for City Council, this one is my favorite this one is my least favorite, this one is somewhere in between.” Daniels said.

Many cities will not have a primary

These 23 cities have will have no primary Tuesday: South Salt Lake, Magna, Bluffdale, Draper, Lehi, Payson, Riverton, Springville, Vineyard, Goshen, Newton, Woodland Hills, Genola, Sandy, Nibley City, Millcreek, Moab, River Heights City, Cottonwood Heights, Elk Ridge, Salt Lake City, Midvale, and Heber City.

There are no cities in Davis or Weber County doing ranked choice voting.

A big concern

Weber County Clerk Ricky Hatch told KSL Newsradio, North Ogden’s City Council approached him for advice on what to do.

“The biggest concern that I have is voter confidence,” Hatch said.

He explained that voters may find the process of voting simple enough. Tabulating the votes gets a bit more complicated.

“The thought of me as a clerk, as and election administrator going into the live ballot files and altering votes — moving one vote from one candidate to another — that makes me very nervous,” he said.  “I want everything to be done above board, and visible, and in a certified manner that the voters can have confidence in, and that they [voters] can understand.” 

Hatch said the state has the ability to tabulate ranked choice voting. However, the hard part comes when there are multi-winner races. For example many City Council races will have more than one seat to be filled. The state’s certified election tabulation system does not handle the multi-winner races. Hatch said that’s when you have to export the votes, prep them, and get them into a separate tabulator.

“There’s a manual transfer of file and a manual manipulation that exposes that transmission to risk that in my opinion is above the risk threshold that I would feel comfortable.” Hatch said.

Trusting the tabulators

Hatch said he certainly trusts the tabulators. But as an election official, however,  he doesn’t want to be able to have access to any election results file.

“We want to be protected, and prevented from being able to manipulate anything after the election,” Hatch said.

You can check your local county clerk’s website to find out whether your city has a primary election Tuesday.

Read more:

We want to hear from you.

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

Politics + Government

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas shown, two impeachment articles dismissed by senate...

MARY CLARE JALONICK

Senate dismisses two articles of impeachment against Homeland Security secretary, ending trial

The two votes effectively end the trial before arguments ever began.

5 hours ago

Sen. Mile Lee calls for impeachment of Mayorkas...

Bridger Beal-Cvetko, KSL.com

Mike Lee calls for full impeachment trial of Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas

Sen. Mike Lee and other GOP senators are calling for a full trial of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

13 hours ago

Senate candidates Brad Wilson, John Curtis, Jason Walton and Brent Orrin Hatch....

Heather Peterson

The race to fill Mitt Romney’s senate seat is getting expensive

The senate candidates vying for Mitt Romney's seat are forking over a lot of money ahead of this month's state conventions.

13 hours ago

FILE - Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Sen. Bob Graham, D-Fla., gestures as he answers quest...

Associated Press

Bob Graham, ex-US senator and Florida governor, dies at 87

TALLAHASSEE, Florida (AP) — Former U.S. Sen. and two-term Florida Gov. Bob Graham, who gained national prominence as chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee in the aftermath of the 2001 terrorist attacks and as an early critic of the Iraq war, has died. He was 87. Graham’s family announced the death Tuesday in a statement […]

21 hours ago

possible new jazz arena shown in rendering of downtown salt lake...

Aimee Cobabe

Jazz owner files application to house NHL team in Salt Lake City

What isn't clear is whether Ryan Smith wants to build a new arena for the NHL or revamp the Delta Center.

1 day ago

former president donald trump shown, his hush money trial is under way and jurors are still being p...

MICHAEL R. SISAK, JENNIFER PELTZ, JAKE OFFENHARTZ and ALANNA DURKIN RICHER Associated Press

First 7 jurors are chosen for Trump’s hush money criminal trial; 11 more still needed

Possible jurors for the hush money trial were questioned about their views on Trump and other issues, as well as social media posts.

1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.

...

Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

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.

Local election leaders tout Ranked Choice Voting ahead of so-called ‘No Primary Day’