IVN News

1.2 Million Arizonans Barred from Participating in Presidential Contest They Pay For

Paid Advertisement

Today, Arizona voters are headed to the polls to decide which presidential candidates they prefer to take the 58 delegates in the Republican contest and 75 delegates on the Democratic contest. However, more than 1.2 million citizens in Arizona – more than a third of all registered voters in the state – won’t be allowed to cast a ballot.

The presidential preference election (PPE) is only open to members of the Democratic, Republican, and Green parties, meaning that voters registered as independent or with another party can’t vote on which presidential candidate they prefer. The last day a voter could have registered with one of the three parties conducting an election Tuesday was February 22. Arizona does not allow same-day registration.

SIGN THE PETITION to End Taxpayer Funding of Party Primaries!

As a result, voter confusion has marred the process, with reports of independent voters missing that deadline and finding out too late that they are ineligible to cast a ballot. Some voters will likely take the time to travel to their local polling location and line up, only to be turned away.

In addition, the PPE is state-funded and administered, meaning that all of the voters who cannot participate in the elections are still paying for them.

Technically, a PPE is different from a primary election since only presidential candidates are on the ballot. Arizona will conduct primary elections for other statewide and congressional office on August 30. Unlike the PPE, independent voters will be able to participate but they have to request a Republican or Democratic ballot.

A bill sponsored by Arizona House Speaker David Gowan would repeal state funding for the PPE, forcing the political parties to raise the funds for the election themselves. It passed a vote in the House, but even if it clears the Senate and is signed into law by Gov. Doug Ducey, it won’t affect this year’s election.

Photo Credit: vepar5 / shutterstock.com

Join the discussion Please be relevant and respectful.

The Independent Voter Network is dedicated to providing political analysis, unfiltered news, and rational commentary in an effort to elevate the level of our public discourse.


Learn More About IVN

213 comments
David Lincoln
David Lincoln

If you are not registered than more than likely for a good reason. My guess is that you are mot a leagal US citizen.

Louie Molina
Louie Molina

The person in charge of reducing the number of voting sites from 200 to 60 was a Republican. Can someone please explain how a Republican can benefit from suppressing the Democratic primary vote in Arizona? And even how Clinton orchestrated such a maneuver? BTW, I'm not a $Hillary supporter!

Pamula Fields
Pamula Fields

Top Ten TRUMP Truth** 1. A great father 2. A Christian 3. A Success 4. Self Funding 5. Best Health care plan - Trump's health care plan is simple but a winner! Make health care private across state lines creating great competition. This will not only lower the cost but create new insurance companies to compete giving people more options. After all, the health care system in the US is second to none! Its the cost thats the issue not the care. 6. His Stance on Illegals immigration in turn will allow more Americans to enter the workforce and will decrease drug trafficking. 7. A friend of Israel. Trump Will support Israel not turn his back. 8. Trump Is not a war monger and will not seek to Police the world but will defeat Issis by letting the military commanders dictate the strategy not the politicians. 9. Trade. Trump will put an end to the Chinese lowering their currency and taking our jobs! He will bring major corporations back to the US by creating tax incentives in turn creating new facilities and factories resulting in good paying jobs! 10. Trump will build our Military smart but will also take care of all Veterans!

RichardSitongia
RichardSitongia

Maricopa County is the 4th LARGEST County in the COUNTRY!!!   YES! In the COUNTRY!!!  And ONLY 60 P0lling places? Provisional Ballots cast Will Not be Counted if they are marked Independent!!! They will be Trash!!!  We want Our Right to VOTE!!!  Please Help us America!!!

Elaine Cummings
Elaine Cummings

@RichardSitongia I am a registered voter in Pima Country  (1 million people, 124 polling places).  No bargain here, either, for those "going to the polls to vote."  When I did NOT receive my mail-in ballot, as usual (I'm seriously 'old') I was told that I should have RE-registered as either an "R" or a "D" in order to vote in this preferential primary. I am an NoP (No Party) independent ...so no chance to vote.  :(

Elaine Cummings
Elaine Cummings

@RichardSitongia @Elaine Cummings  Way too many people did NOT know of the change and, even when they DID, did NOT realize what was 'needed.'  The ads that ran did emphasize being a 'registered' voter, which I am.  ---  Imagine how many more there are that have NOT voted in a "preference primary" here since 2012, perhaps even 2008?  New residents, returning residents, whatever!  If, for whatever reason ... and people have many reasons personal to themselves or family ... you do NOT know until it is too late to cure the problem.   People here and, I guess, up in the Phoenix area as well, waited on very long lines for hours; and, when they finally GOT to the table to sign in to vote, they FOUND OUT THEN!  --  I felt ridiculous until I heard how many thousands MORE were in the same boat.  I agree,  THIS is a disgrace.  ARIZONA hits the national map again ... for all the wrong reasons.   :(

PamelaValemont
PamelaValemont

@RichardSitongia The whole world is watching this fiasco Richard. I am Australian and sitting over here just gobsmacked at this outrage. The American voting system is totally open to fraudulent attack, and the disgraceful part about it is that you guys evidently actually pay to allow this to happen! Now, because Bernie Sanders' political revolution has received such world wide attention, not to mention Donald Trump and his antics, the global community has also been exposed to these undemocratic practices that you guys have to bear and we are NOT happy! Definitely, there needs to be another poll taken, but what upsets me more than anything, is the old and frail people that were forced to wait in line for hours into the darkness without food or drink, or even being able to go to the toilet in all that time. One elderly person fainted, and there  must have been many more occasioned extreme distress and discomfort being forced to remain standing all that time!  I am outraged by this cruel treatment of your elderly folk. I would be even more outraged if it could be proven that this was a deliberate ploy orchestrated to keep Bernie Sanders supporters from voting, without any regard at all for the elderly, disabled and small children who would undoubtedly be affected by their cruel subterfuge. There have been unprecedented turnouts for him all over the country, and I think the conservative establishment will pull out all stoppers to stop him getting as far as the White House gates.      

Elaine Cummings
Elaine Cummings

@PamelaValemont @RichardSitongia Pamela:  Thanks for noticing!  Although, it is embarrassing to most of us.  Your concern regarding MY candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT), is appreciated.  However, there is no way that specific candidates' supporters could have been 'targeted.' BOTH political parties' constituents suffered the same indignities of long lines, or of finding out after a long wait that they were ineligible to vote because they were not 'properly RE-registered' as either a Republican or a Democrat.  --  I am 84 years old and have voted via a MAIL-IN ballot for many elections.  When my ballot did not come in the mail, I called the proper office to ask. Then I found out that, while I was a registered voter (Independent, at this time for many personal reasons), I needed to have RE-registered as either an "R" or a "D" for THIS presidential preference vote.   I agree with you, as do many thousands more, that Sen. Bernie Sanders is being ignored by our national media in an unprecedented manner.

PamelaValemont
PamelaValemont

@RichardSitongia Yes, it was a shambles that's for sure, and thanks for clarifying for me Richard that it was not only Bernie voters who missed out on their democratic right to vote. The electoral people really have no excuse for not being prepared, as they must have known the massive turnout for Bernie would be the order of the day, as it has been in other states, and that the numbers of people attending would be swelled out of all proportion to previous primaries. Badly worded and organized publicity too - that should never happen - especially when the voters are paying these publicity people to work for them, and make sure they are given the correct information and in a timely manner, which clearly was NOT done. I think this kind of thing is happening in other areas too; it seems not many people are capable of wording an article without ambiguity attached. When something is open to interpretation it is the fault of the writer of the information. If people get the wrong end of the stick, the person who wrote the article giving out the information to the public is clearly not up to the task, has bad communication skills and has to go. The people being paid to run these elections are not taking their jobs seriously enough and hiring the wrong people for the job. They are ill- equipped and not properly trained for the task = not up to standards expected;  that is patently obvious. Why should the people pay for third rate work and be disenfranchised in the process? 

RichardSitongia
RichardSitongia

@Elaine Cummings @PamelaValemont @RichardSitongia I'm sorry to inform you! The person i went to Protest against for this gross misconduct of Duties, Helen Purcell i just found out! her Late Husband used to be Lt. Governor for Bill Clinton in Arkansas!! She herself knew alot of  Hillerys votes would come in thru the new mail in Ballots! Mostly Estableshment voters!! So she reduced the number of Polling stations down to 60 from 200!!  She never went to the Board and ask for more money to open more polls if nessesary? Rep Gallordo emphasized that all the Money they spend to running the elections are Reimpursed by the State, and that the State would have paid for all 200 polling places!!!! Hillary only campaign hear 1 Time in a High School gym! Bill same thing 1 day at a High School gym!  Bernie was hear for 7 days, Packed crowds at Phoenix Convention Center! Thousands at the Phoenix Coliseum! Flagstaff, Tuscan down by the Mexican Border and Indian Reservations!!  Sounds like Hillary already Knew she was gonna win!!!  That's why when they Made the announcment at a little passed 8 that had Clinton winning the Democrat primary,posting the votes by Mail ins 67 percent Clinton and 30 percent Sanders!!!! the polls were open til 12:45 am with people trying to vote! And alot Left after they announced her winner at 8pm!!!!  Our rights were taken away from us!! We Demand a REVOTE june 7th thats what i'm going down to the Capital to Protest again March 28th We want everyone to Vote!!  Thx Pam I would love to get a Chance to see your Beautiful Country 1 day!  God Bless you and your Family! Rich!

Diana McCaul
Diana McCaul

Devin "friends: nothing to show" Snow How much DOES a troll get paid?

Melissa Brown
Melissa Brown

For ALL Berners to share: Today is the LAST day to register to vote in New York if you or those you know (or those who follow you on Twitter or FB that you don't really know) want to vote Bernie in April in New York, worth a Y'huge amount of delegates. Share a post like this more than once. Share it loud. Email about it to your business or friends contact list. Care not what people think about you being annoying. Care not if you know for certain that you even have contacts in New York. Encourage those who see your message to share it. Be at least as annoying as I am about it and we have a real shot to do well in New York. Be sensitive to people's email boxes and FB newsfeeds and we do not so well. It's time to stand up. It's rather easy to do in this day and age. But you do still have to do it! Encourage, motivate, fork people in the butt if you must. Help get new people registered in New York today. It's the last day.

Melissa Brown
Melissa Brown

I am reposting Ron Sarocky's comment from another string. Everyone MUST check their voter registration going forward. Please share this with everyone you know.... Also, just a reminder, 4 voter registration deadlines this week: New York - March 25, 2016 Wyoming - March 25, 2016 Rhode Island - March 27, 2016 Pennsylvania - March 28, 2016 As you phone bank, canvas, volunteer, face bank, etc, make sure everyone is aware that they are hacking our voter registration everywhere, and everyone must be diligent and check these things...

Rebecca Beisenstein
Rebecca Beisenstein

Yes, elections are expensive. I changed designation specifically to vote for Bernie!

Gina Dreyer Baird
Gina Dreyer Baird

When I lived in Va we didn't have to declare a party, just register. In the primaries Independents chose which party ballot.

toryadoria
toryadoria

Not seeing any official outlets covering the massive voter suppression and election fraud that have been reported by by life-long democrats being turned away in multiple states immediately following the Clinton campaign heading up a great new way to keep voters updated in the database. Multiple elections have been stolen and we are paying attention in social media. When we have a friend in MA, a family member in IL, an old friend in FL and an acquaintance in AZ all get turned away for one reason or another something is about to get broke quick. Don't even get me started on Slick Willy and his black suit circus blocking multiple polling locations in MA and IL! Cheap and tacky, thanks for reminding us how you like to play by, I mean above, the rules. It's a sorry way to win by 0.2%, repeatedly. We're watching. and we're out of popcorn.

Al Myers
Al Myers

If you people don't know how the system works that alone, tells me that you have very little knowledge about who your even voting for. Stupid is Stupid!

Colin Campbell
Colin Campbell

So why didn't the Independents put up their own candidate? They had the opportunity to do this - but never bothered to. Just because the party you registered as didn't put forward a candidate does not mean that you were denied the chance to vote.

Deanna Herrin
Deanna Herrin

Wake up and smell the coffee America, this is happening in most states to keep people from Voteing at all, thank your GOP for this!!!

Elaine Cummings
Elaine Cummings

I was one of those people ... so, believe it!  I have lived in AZ for over 40 years, and never missed an election; nor, had I in NJ, NY or WA in my past. -- AZ 'Party Bosses' screwed over a large mass of the population.  I found out when I called the registrar's office to ask "Where is my mail-in ballot?"  I am a registered voter, but ...  even with the radio and TV announcements before the Feb. cut-off date ... it was NOT made clear that Independents or others MUST re-register as a "D" or an "R" in order to vote.  Don't know during which holiday weekend, at 2 a.m., they made this decision, but "what fools they were!"   They denied many votes for any candidates in this process.   As well, who knows WHO will be picked as real 'delegates,' here.  AZ has a different system for that, too.  We are left holding the bag, and playing "WHO do you trust?"   ---   THAT is neither democracy nor voting.

Carol Maynard
Carol Maynard

My sister went twice and the lines were so long to vote that she just went home and didn't get to vote... They didn't have enough poles open to accomodate the crowds!

Roro Solra
Roro Solra

people there doing it so you cant vote

Donna Hebdo
Donna Hebdo

I would think that the people of Arizona, especially Democrats would be irate!!

Throckmorton P. Gilbertson
Throckmorton P. Gilbertson

They must be taking lessons from King County WA. During the 2010 midterms they closed all but three of the polling places in King County and didn't inform anyone before the fact. It was a field day for liberals who all were on absentee ballot. I am myself as an independent.

RichardSitongia
RichardSitongia

Such a Disgrace! AZ is tops! 60 polling places for 5 Million people!!! Are you kidding me!!!!

Elaine Cummings
Elaine Cummings

@RichardSitongia   In Maricopa County, there were 64 polling places for about 4 million people; and, in Pima County, 124 polling for about 1 million people.  Fact is, a TON of mail-ballots already had been sent in, way before election day. -- BTW:  the Mail-In ballots was the "count" used by CNN to "call the election" for Mrs. Clinton, way before the actual 'in person' ballots had been cast; and, called while people were still on two-hour wait lines to vote.   As well, many got to their polling place ... as registered voters ... only to be told that they should have RE-registered as either "D" or "R" in order to cast a vote.  The CHANGE of rules was NOT made clear, and thousands ... including myself (84 years old, registered Independent, waiting for my 'mail in' ballot) ... were not properly informed.

Mara Sindoni
Mara Sindoni

VOTER FRAUD IN ARIZONA - DESERVES ATTORNEY GENERAL INVESTIGATION - RETAKE ARIZONA VOTE WITH MONITORS

James Kroneman
James Kroneman

Then, according to the XIV amendment to the US Constitution, they must cut their representation in Congress by 1/3!

Jimmy L Roberts
Jimmy L Roberts

We need to remodel the election process,starting with the parties themselves! The immaturity is astounding! What a circus!

Wack Messiah
Wack Messiah

When you registered as an independent that was your way of saying "I don't care to vote in either of the major primaries" - you knew full well that's how it worked, that was a choice you were making. If suddenly THIS year you decided you actually cared and wanted to take a side, you had more than enough time to get your a$$ in gear and change your registration. A month before the primary date is a reasonable enough amount of time to get it together. It's not like people didn't know it was coming.

Elaine Cummings
Elaine Cummings

@Wack Messiah  No, that is NOT correct for AZ, for this "preference" election.  There was a RULES CHANGE here, and, it had not been that way before.  I have lived here and voted here for over 40 years.   Where are you?  --  As well, "it IS like people did not know it was coming," because too many did NOT know, including myself. The rules change was not made clear, nor was it explained with clarity on either radio or TV, until it was too late.  Do NOT comment if you do NOT know.  

Wack Messiah
Wack Messiah

@Elaine Cummings No, there wasn't a rules change, at least not in regards to independents taking part. 2012 and 2008 were closed primaries as well. I can't comment on prior years since I wasn't in AZ then, but the last two cycles have been the same for unregistered or independent voters.

Elaine Cummings
Elaine Cummings

@Wack Messiah @Elaine Cummings   I am just saying what I understood to be the case from the proper offices.  I lived out-of-state during one, and was not involved in the other due to the illness and death of my late husband.  I was, however, told ... by the registrar's office, when I called for my mail-in ballot ...  that "thousands' were disenfranchised because they did NOT know of the "rule change."  Nor did I.  I was a registered voter, and not a GREEN, either.

RichardSitongia
RichardSitongia

@Wack Messiah There was very little news on Changes at the polls this year!!! Alot of blame to go around,starting with Helen Purcell at the Maricopa county Recorders office!!!