Florida Constitution Revision Commission Likely To Tinker Slightly with Florida’s Closed Primaries

The Florida Constitution Revision Commission has the power to put proposed constitutional changes on the November 2018 ballot. According to this story, the part of the Commission that studies election law changes is recommending one change in Florida’s closed primary. Currently if members of only one party file for a particular partisan office, then that party’s primary for that office is open to all registered voters. The change would say an election is deemed to have candidates from only one party, even if there is a write-in candidate in the general election for that particular office.

Florida has a huge proportion of partisan races with candidates from only one party. That is because Florida has such severe filing fees, twice as high as any other state’s filing fees (6% of the office annual salary; Georgia is second with 3% of the salary). In many of these one-party elections, someone who is in league with the party will file as a write-in candidate, thus closing the primary for that particular office to only party members. Public hostility toward this trick is motivating the Revision Commission to change the law to ignore write-ins for the purpose of determining whether a primary is closed or open.

According to the story, the Commission is not recommending converting all Florida primaries from closed to semi-closed. A semi-closed primary is one in which independent voters can choose a primary ballot.


Florida Constitution Revision Commission Likely To Tinker Slightly with Florida’s Closed Primaries — 2 Comments

  1. Gee — once again —

    NO HACK primaries — with or without HIGH filing fees.

    PR and AppV

  2. I came across this in 2004 when I filed to run as a write-in candidate against a Republican Florida congressman when no Democrat was going to be on the November ballot. A supporter of the congressman’s GOP primary opponent accused me of being on the congressman’s payroll because he assumed I filed only to “close” the Republican primary.


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