Voting in the 2018 Primaries

January 17, 2018

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The 2018 primary election takes place on March 6, with early voting running February 20 - March 2. This is where voters select the candidate in each party that will run for statewide office in November (when we get to vote again!).

Why vote in the primaries?

Some people write off voting in the primaries, or voting in general, but there are a few reasons to consider doing so (don't worry, "the joy of civic engagement" isn't among them):

  1. While presidential candidates are a big draw, candidates in state and local elections will be on your ballot in 2018. Much of the policy that has a direct impact on our lives happens at the local level; don't miss this opportunity to select who represents you!
  2. In some state races, a party is running uncontested; for example, only Republicans and no Democrats may be running for a particular office. This means that whoever wins the primary wins the election. In these cases, don't wait for November to vote for your candidate!
  3. Once elected, representatives may refer to your voting record (whether you voted in a given election, not who or what you voted for). Rep. Sarah Davis has said that when constituents approach her with concerns, one of the first things she does is check to see if they vote. In other words, your elected officials pay attention to whether you regularly participate in the democratic process.

Unclear on how the primaries work?

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