Premature Maine Snowefall?


Those excited about Brian Bolduc’s exclusive post about a potential tea-party challenger to Olympia Snowe should look at Maine’s law governing primary elections. According to the statute, the relevant portion of which is excerpted below, each party determines in the election year what the qualifications are for participation in that year’s primary. So, don’t be surprised if Snowe supporters make a strong, and perhaps very public, push to permit independents — known in Maine as “unenrolled” voters — to vote in the GOP 2012 Senate primary.

§340. Notice of parties of qualified primary voters1. Notice to Secretary of State.  No later than February 1st of the election year, each political party eligible to participate in a primary election shall notify the Secretary of State of the enrollment qualifications, subject to the restrictions in section 144, for voters eligible to vote in that party’s primary. If no notice is received by that date, only voters enrolled in a political party may vote in that party’s primary.

Henry Olsen — Henry Olsen is an elections analyst and political essayist who studies conservative politics, both here and abroad.  He looks at election returns and poll data to understand why people vote ...

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