Hoosier voters could always count on receiving a complete ballot when they stepped inside the voting booth. Not any more.
In a misguided example of trying to streamline the voting process and save a few dollars, a new state law that went into effect on July 1 prohibits listing the names of unopposed candidates on the ballot. This bill will do nothing except create confusion, while any monetary savings would be negligible.
State Rep. Kathy Richardson, R-Noblesville, the bill’s sponsor, told The Star Press the intent was to eliminate the need for various ballot styles when there was no need for an election. Fewer ballot styles can save errors by making sure the right precinct and voters have the right ballot.
Election officials do not have the option of providing a full ballot. Richardson says the law gives no discretionary authority to county clerks. She said the bill’s meaning, which has been ambiguous in some discussions, is clear: Unopposed candidates will not appear on the ballot.