by Brent Laurenz | The Voter Update
A host of bills have been introduced in the N.C. General Assembly this week that, if passed, would fundamentally alter some of our current election procedures.
The bill seeking the most wholesale changes to our election system is House Bill 451, “Election Omnibus.” The amount of election-related changes packed into this 12-page bill is fairly astounding.
The first section would overhaul the way we elect judges by not only restoring partisan labels to the ballot for judicial candidates, who currently run without party labels, but also by repealing North Carolina’s system of judicial public financing.
by Barry Smith | Carolina Journal
RALEIGH – North Carolina could come full circle by 2014 in the way candidates for judicial posts are identified. Currently, judicial elections are nonpartisan. Republicans in the House and the Senate have filed bills that would restore party labels to North Carolina judicial elections — from the District Court to the Supreme Court — reversing a trend that started nearly two decades ago.
Supporters of the change say party affiliation provides information to voters who tend to have little knowledge of the philosophical leanings of judicial candidates.
by Paul Woolverton | Fayetteville Observer
State Rep. Elmer Floyd wants to do away with runoff primary elections in North Carolina, saying they are not worth the cost because so few people turn out to vote.
Last summer, only 222,154 of the state’s 6.15 million voters cast ballots in runoff primaries that state elections director Gary Bartlett estimated cost taxpayers $7 million.
By Tom Breen | Associated Press
RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolina voters will likely have a new choice at the polls this November, as a group with an unconventional approach to the electoral process delivered more than 86,000 certified petition signatures to the state Board of Elections Wednesday.
Americans Elect is a nonpartisan group working to get its as-yet-unnamed presidential candidate on the ballot in all 50 states this year, motivated largely by the conviction that voters are looking for an alternative to the two major parties that have dominated American politics since the middle of the 19th century.
“There’s no particular program, it’s more about the process itself,” said Luke Shuffield, the group’s organizer on the Duke University campus, who helped deliver the petition signatures to the board.
Read in Full Article: Americans Elect vies for spot on fall NC ballot | Associated Press
News & Observer
A new political party is expected to appear on North Carolina’s ballot in November.
The nonpartisan Americans Elect wants to offer voters an alternative to the two-party political system. It submitted about 86,000 certified signatures from North Carolina residents to get on the ballot, joining the Democrat, Republican and Libertarian parties who will nominate a candidate. (The organization collected 120,000 signatures, about 86,000 of which were certified by local counties, organizers said.) Americans Elect needs 85,379 signatures, or 2 percent of the votes cast in the last general election, to make the cut, according to state law.
Voters will decide the party’s candidates in an online nominating convention in June. Anyone can run for president and all registered voters are eligible to serve as delegates.
Luke Shuffield, a Duke University junior, delivered the signatures Wednesday morning. He said the group is going to harness technology to attract support. “I think we’ve already seen in the last couple elect cycles that new technology and social movements can be powerful in elections,” he said. “We acknowledge its an uphill battle but I don’t think it’s too idealistic at all … given the start divide we have in politics.”
Americans Elect is now on the ballot in 21 states — North Carolina will be No. 22, once certified by the State Board of Elections. Organizers expect to collect the signatures to contest all 50 states. The nonprofit — which shuns the idea that its a third party — is accepting campaign contributions from individuals but not special interests, corporations or political action committees. The idea, organizers say, is to find a candidate who answers to the voters, not political parties.
“I think you’re going to find that a lot of people aren’t really satisfied with two options,” Shuffield said.
Read in Original Context: North Carolina voters expected to see new party on November ballot | News & Observer