Republican for a Day

Most people know that I am unaffiliated in terms of political party. However, whenever a primary rolls around, I change my registration to Republican so that I can vote in the primary. The GOP primary is closed here in Utah, so you can only vote if you’re Republican.

In many states, that’s not a big deal. You just vote in a primary that’s open, and will let anyone vote. In Utah, the options for open primaries are the Democrat and Constitution parties. And, in Utah, that means that maybe you have a couple of races to vote on (there was one race for the Dems, and two races for Constitution). Come November, a number of the people on the ballot in Utah, especially locally outside of certain areas, are uncontested Republicans.

Really, if you want to make a choice in Utah, especially in local races, your option is the Republican primary. And to vote in the Republican primary here, you need to be a Republican. Luckily, they’ll let you sign up at the polls. On the day of the primary. So that’s what I do. And then I go ahead and change back to being unaffiliated the next day.

Learning the Truth about the Current Political System

While a two-party system isn’t specified in the Constitution, it’s pretty ingrained in our society. A kid, probably 18 and voting for the first time, was there ahead of me. The poll workers were trying to explain to him how primaries work, and how not anyone can just walk in and vote for who they want to during the primary.

There was another guy there, recently moved from Wyoming, who was adamant about voting in the Democratic primary, and the poor kid, idealistic and unaffiliated, ready to just vote his conscience, didn’t know what to do. He didn’t want to be labeled as part of a political party, but he also wanted to vote in a primary where he could make a choice. So I briefly explained what I do. “It’s a bit of a hassle,” I said, “but if you want a choice, and want to be remain unaffiliated, it’s worth it.”

What do you think? Would you go through the trouble?

3 Responses to Republican for a Day

  1. That is precisely the reason why I was registered Republican when we lived in Utah. I didn’t go through the trouble of unaffiliating myself the day after. I guess I just didn’t mind the label that much.

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