Friday, May 7, 2021

LA Close Primary Election Defeated

Open Primaries has played a Leadership Role in Mobilizing Opposition to efforts by Legislators across the Country to enact Closed Primary Elections.

In Louisiana, on General Election Day in November, All Candidates Run on the same Ballot. If No Candidate receives over 50% of the Vote, then the Top-Two Vote-Getters face a Runoff Six weeks later. There is No Primary Date.

Open Primaries is proud to have played a Role in the Defeat of an effort to Close Louisiana’s Primary, the Only Statewide Nonpartisan Primary in the South.

Legislation to Close the Primaries was introduced by State Sen. Sharon Hewitt (R-1st District), following a Recommendation to Close the Primaries by a Bipartisan Task Force of Party Insiders.

Attorney General, Jeff Landry (R) and U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise (R-1st District) were among those Supporting the Effort, along with a Number of Leading Democrats.

Over 800,000 Louisianans, including 200,000 Black Voters, would have been Disenfranchised, had the Bill passed.

Open Primaries worked with Local Leaders, including U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy (R) and Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser (R), to Oppose the effort.

Nungesser recently gave an impassioned Speech to State GOP Supporters arguing to Keep Louisiana's Primaries Nonpartisan and Open to All Voters.

The Effort to Close Louisiana’s Primaries gained steam when Senator Cassidy Voted to Convict Trump on Charges of Incitement of Insurrection. The LA GOP Executive Committee Censured Cassidy over the Vote, and some Activists pointed to Closed Primaries as a way to Handicap Elected Officials like Senator Cassidy, who has Demonstrated a Willingness to Work across the Aisle on Key Issues.

Bowing to Pressure, Senator Hewitt Withdrew her Legislation.

Open Primaries President, John Opdycke stated: This was a bad bill - closed partisan primaries are designed to help the few at the expense of the many. The real momentum is in the other direction - towards more open and nonpartisan voting systems like Alaskans enacted last November. But it is critical that we play defense as well as offense. That’s how we grow the movement and the conversation.

Open Primaries will continue to Work with their Partners in Louisiana and across the Country to Monitor and Oppose New Attempts to Close Primary Elections and Shut-Out Voters.

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker

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