Following the passage of two state referendums in November, Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper certified approval of Propositions 107 and 108 on Tuesday, instituting a presidential primary system in place of caucuses.
Prior to 2004, Colorado voters were required by law to identify with a major party to vote in either of the state’s primaries. Both ballots were approved by a two-thirds margin on Election Day.
In concert with the passage of the referenda, state delegates will now be bound to the winners at both national party conventions.
The measures passed despite resistance from both the Democratic and Republican party chairs. Each organization opposed Proposition 107, particularly, for the reason changes to a state’s party procedures require approval from the national conventions.
Both state parties expressed objections to expenses: Under the new rules governing the primary system, the cost for expanded elections will shift to state and local governments.
Some estimates place additional costs at $2.7 million, with an additional $5.3 million to be spent by counties.
In the 2016 presidential campaign, Colorado’s Democratic caucus-goers favored Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, while Republican delegates chose Texas Senator Ted Cruz after precinct-level caucuses were canceled by the state GOP in August 2015.
[UPI] [The Hill] [Photo courtesy Hyoung Chang/Denver Post]