Colorado Secretary of State logo - cube with a C in it

Colorado
Secretary of State
Wayne W. Williams

Picture of Secretary of State Wayne W. Williams

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Colorado Secretary of State logo - cube with a C in it

Colorado
Secretary of State
Wayne W. Williams

×
Colorado state seal

News Release

Media contact
(303) 860-6903

Lynn Bartels
lynn.bartels@sos.state.co.us

Julia Sunny
julia.sunny@sos.state.co.us

State of Colorado
Department of State

1700 Broadway
Suite 250
Denver, CO 80290

Wayne W. Williams
Secretary of State

Suzanne Staiert
Deputy Secretary of State

Colorado state seal

News Release

State of Colorado
Department of State

1700 Broadway
Suite 250
Denver, CO 80290

Wayne W. Williams
Secretary of State

Suzanne Staiert
Deputy Secretary of State

Media contact
(303) 860-6903
Lynn Bartels - lynn.bartels@sos.state.co.us
Julia Sunny - julia.sunny@sos.state.co.us

Secretary Wayne Williams reports rejection rate for unaffiliated voters less than half the percentage projected

DENVER, July 6, 2018 -- Colorado's unaffiliated voters beat the odds in the June 26 primary election, turning in ballots that had to be rejected at less than half the rate initially predicted.

Voters in 2016 approved Proposition 108, which allowed unaffiliated voters to automatically participate in primary elections by voting for candidates on either the Democratic ballot or the Republican ballot. Based on other states' results, one argument against the measure was that as many as 7 percent of the ballots would have to be disqualified because voters would fill out both ballots instead of one.*

But the statewide rejection rate was 2.4 percent, according to election figures released today. Of the 293,153 ballots submitted by unaffiliated voters, 6,914 contained voted ballots for both Democratic and Republican candidates so neither ballot counted. The attachment breaks down the rejection rate by county.

"I am incredibly proud of the efforts by our county clerks and media partners who helped deliver the message to only vote one ballot," Secretary of State Wayne Williams said. "Our office will be working with the clerks to improve the percentage in our next primary election, in 2020."

Kent Thiry, chairman and CEO of DaVita, helped finance the Proposition 108 campaign and praised the outcome.

"We enjoyed working the with SOS team to achieve this excellent first election result and look forward to doing even better next time," he said.

The Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce campaigned for the passage of Prop 108.

"We know Coloradans are smart and engaged and these numbers confirm it," said Kelly Brough, president and CEO of the chamber. "It's exciting to see Colorado's unaffiliated voters share their voices earlier in the election process. We're very proud to have played a role in letting Colorado vote."

Williams in March rolled out the statewide UChooseCO campaign to educate unaffiliated voters that they could participate in the primary election, but that they could only return one ballot.

In an effort to help reduce confusion and costs for county clerks, unaffiliated voters were invited to go online to pick which ballot they wanted mailed to them. Those who did not received both ballots. Mesa County Clerk Sheila Reiner said sending only one ballot to an ununaffiliated voter instead of two ballots reduced mailing costs from $1 to $0.62 for her taxpayers.

The UChooseCO campaign -- launched with the help of Forté Advertising -- included three, 8-foot yellow inflatable U's that traveled the state, and wooden U's decorated by SOS staffers, newsmakers, county clerks, lawmakers, candidates, political junkies and others.

* See 2016 "Blue Book," starting at page 65.

Unaffiliated - voted more than one ballot (PDF)

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Secretary of State Wayne W. Williams

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