Posted on April 04, 2019 at 9:18 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 26, 2018
Voters Hail CRC Vote to Open the Primaries in Florida
Tallahassee, FL – January 26, 2018 – A working coalition of voters, led by Florida-based reform groups Progress for All and Florida Fair and Open Primaries hailed the Constitutional Revision Commission (CRC) Ethics and Elections Committee for passing Commissioner Schifino’s proposal to open Florida’s primaries to the 3.4 million independent voters who are currently barred from voting in the state’s taxpayer funded primary elections. Non-partisan organizations, such as the League of Women Voters, joined the chorus of support for open primaries before the Ethics and Elections Committee.
Open primaries was a popular topic before the CRC at nine public hearings held across the state earlier this year. Dozens of Floridians showed up and spoke in favor of changing the current rules, which exclude independents and limit the choices of Democrats and Republicans. Hundreds more submitted written statements of support and individual Commissioners have received thousands of emails and postcards, along with a 9,000 signature petition, supporting open primaries. 73% of Floridians-including supermajorities of Republicans, Democrats and independent voters- support open primaries and want the CRC to put open primaries on the 2018 ballot according to a recent poll.
The coalition is now calling on the General Provisions Committee where the proposal goes next as well as the entire CRC to pass Schifino’s proposal and give Floridians the chance to vote for open primaries in 2018.
“The voters of Florida support open primaries by a very large margin. But politicians tend to ignore voters when it comes to making democracy more open, fair, and responsive to the people. It’s a tribute to Commissioner Schifino and the members of the Ethics and Elections Committee that they listened. The movement for open primaries in Florida is just getting started, and we’re going to hold the General Provisions Committee and the full CRC accountable as they begin their deliberations on this critical issue.”
Progress for All is a small-donor based grassroots political and community action group supporting progressive candidates and causes at the national, state, and local levels.
Florida Fair and Open Primaries (FFAOP) is a grassroots non-partisan, volunteer organization that supports adding a constitutional amendment to the ballot to change Florida primary elections from a closed system to a top two open primary system.
Open Primaries is a national, election reform organization working to enact open and nonpartisan primary systems, counter efforts to close primaries, educate voters, train and support spokespeople, and participate in the building of local, state and national coalitions.