Elections

Strong Turnout Predicted For Washington Primary

KUOW | Aug. 4, 2008 8:11 a.m. | Updated: July 17, 2012 1:14 a.m. | Olympia, WA

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By Tom Banse

Washington State’s chief elections officer is forecasting the best voter turnout in years for this month’s primary election.

Secretary of State Sam Reed predicts 46 percent of voters will cast ballots.  He says the ability to vote-by-mail is one reason.

Another is the return of the open primary.  Voters can once again mark their ballots with any combination of parties and candidates they prefer.

Sam Reed: “In spite of all the work we did to convince people to use the pick-a-party system, we still had feedback from all across the State of Washington that people refused to vote when they were limited to one party. So we think we’re going to see good turnout for that reason as well.”

Washington’s primary election is officially known now as a “Top Two” system, where the top 2 vote getters advance regardless of party.

In November, Oregon voters are being asked whether they want to adopt the same primary format.

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