UtahPolicy.com has been told that the group behind Count My Vote has decided to run a citizen initiative petition in 2018 that will do away with the caucus/delegate/convention route for candidates and only allow candidates to get on the primary and general election ballots via gathering voter signatures. When CMV’s 2014 petition was in public discussion, various polls showed a majority of citizens supported the so-called “direct primary” option. Also, UtahPolicy is told the new initiative will say that any vacancy in a partisan office will be filled by special election. Right now it is usually filled by appointment by local party officials.
That means, for example, in the case of filling the seat held by former-U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, there would have been no GOP 3rd District delegate vote, but all the candidates would get on the primary party ballot via signature gathering.
As UtahPolicy readers likely know, Chris Herrod got on Tuesday’s 3rd District GOP ballot via a delegate convention win, while Provo Mayor John Curtis (Tuesday’s winner) and independent businessman Tanner Ainge got on the ballot by gathering the required 7,000 GOP voter signatures.
CMV leaders, which include former Republican Gov. Mike Leavitt and Gail Miller, owner of the Utah Jazz and Larry H. Miller car dealerships, will raise the money needed to run a successful signature-gathering campaign – getting the 113,000 signatures of registered Utah voters to place the proposal on the 2018 general election ballot, UtahPolicy is told.