As Florida’s population grows and more residents shun traditional party affiliations, voters are befuddled, if not angry, about the state’s closed-primary system, including the use of write-in candidates, three local elections supervisors testified Wednesday. “When it comes to the primary election, our voters are confused,” Broward County Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes told the state Constitution Revision Commission’s Ethics and Elections Committee. Many new voters move to Florida from other states with more open voting systems as opposed to Florida’s closed primaries, which are restricted to voters who are registered with parties. Florida is one of nine states using a closed-primary system. “We have people coming from all over the country, and they bring with them the experiences that they have had and what they know,” Snipes said. “It’s difficult for them to understand.”
Adding to the confusion is that more voters are opting not to join the Republicans or Democrats but register with “no party affiliation” or in a host of minor parties. No-party affiliation is the fastest growing segment of the electorate and is particularly popular with young people, with more than one out of every four Florida voters falling into that category.
But no-party voters can’t vote in Democratic or GOP primaries, although they can cast their ballots in non-partisan primary races and in general elections.
Full Article: Closed primary elections draw scrutiny.