State Rep. Eugene DePasquale



DePasquale to introduce open primary legislation


HARRISBURG, June 4 State Rep. Eugene DePasquale, D-York, announced today that he soon will introduce legislation that would allow all registered voters in Pennsylvania even those not affiliated with a particular political party to cast a vote in primary elections.


"The intent of this legislation is to ensure that every elector's voice is heard and recorded during primary elections," DePasquale said. "Our current closed primary system leaves thousands of Pennsylvanians disenfranchised on primary Election Day. Regardless of political affiliation, voters should be able to have a say in their candidates."


Currently, Pennsylvania's closed primary system allows only members of the two major political parties to cast ballots on primary Election Day for Republican or Democratic nominations.


DePasquale said his legislation would not change how the two major party electors vote in primaries. Instead, the bill would give voice to independents and third-party affiliates by allowing them to choose a primary in which to vote. 


Twelve states presently offer voters open primaries: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Vermont and Wisconsin.