Below is a letter to Felecia Rotellini, the Democratic Party of Arizona State Chair, and Democratic Party State Committee members who have the authority to correct a voting rights injustice in Arizona this year. One third of Arizona voters are being denied the right to vote in the 2020 Presidential Preference Election because they are independent. We can change this.
We write to you in your capacity as the Chair and State Committee members of the Democratic Party of our state.
We, the undersigned, are Arizona voters concerned about the process in which our Presidential Preference Election (PPE) will be held in 2020.
The election of the next President of the United States is the most important exercise of democracy in our nation. But, the Democratic Presidential Preference Election as currently designed will exclude one third of the state's voters from participating. These voters (1,267,340 as of July 1, 2019) are registered independents. They are permitted to vote in every other primary and general election held in Arizona. Thus, their exclusion from voting in the Democratic Presidential Preference Election is punitive and arbitrary.
The good news is that this exclusion can be corrected by a simple action of the Arizona Democratic Party. In many states around the country, independents are welcomed into the presidential primary process.
It is our strong belief that no Arizona voter should be forced to join a political party in order to be able to vote in any election.
We write today to urge you to open the Democratic Party Presidential Preference Election in Arizona to independents.
You have the authority to do so. You can act to realize the full democratic participation of all Arizonans.
Your name here..
Independents are the largest community of voters in Arizona, but are not allowed to vote in the Presidential primaries. Help protest our exclusion by signing this letter to the Democratic and Republican Party chairs in Arizona urging them to open the March 2016 primaries to allow independents to vote. Thousands have done so already. Add your voice!Learn More
Gallup reports that 46% of Americans self-identify as independents. We are becoming organized in Arizona and around the country - not by building a 3rd party - but by creating community that supports the people’s interest, over narrow partisan interests. We support reforms the empower voters and believe that no American should have to join a political party in order to have the right to participate in every election.Learn More
Opinion: Adrian Fontes - August 7, 2019 It makes no sense to let independents vote in every primary election except the one for president. Two things happened the day after Arizona’s disastrous 2016 presidential preference election: I decided to run for Maricopa County recorder, the office that runs these elections. Gov. Doug...
Al Bell - June 10, 2019 In 2020, qualified independent voters who want to vote in the presidential preference election will be required to join a private organization, a “recognized party,” by February 19 to participate in the March 17 election. One-third of Arizona’s registered voters are independents. To be...
Cathy Stewart and Jane Kleeb - April 24, 2019
We are two women — one an independent and one a Democrat, one from New York and the other from Nebraska — who are perhaps unlikely political collaborators, but we share a view on a critical democracy issue.