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Montana Secretary of State Says “People Don’t Crossover” to Vote in Primaries

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Photo courtesy of Jon King

Montana Republicans are working to close their primary to help prevent crossover democrats from influencing their elections, but current Montana Secretary of State Linda McCulloch, a Democrat, thinks things should stay the way they are.

“Well in my opinion, I support the current law,” McCulloch said. “I don’t think it’s a good idea to close primaries because it closes it to everybody. We have a great many independent voters. We’ve had an open primary since 1912 and I would want to continue with that.”

McCulloch says she hears calls for closed primaries from both parties every year.

“Every election we have people from both democrat and republican parties that claim that people cross over. My gut feeling is that people don’t cross over. Besides that, some of those people might be. We have a great number of independent voters and some of those people might be independent voters who vote sometimes in a republican primaries and sometimes in democratic primaries and they’re allowed to do that.”

26 states and the District of Columbia use the closed primary system. In Alaska, the republican primary is closed while other parties have open primaries, a situation that may come to Montana as well.

Linda McCulloch:

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