Tag archive

party switching

Wyoming’s 65th Legislature: General Session Review

in News/Health care/Taxes/Education/Agriculture/Criminal justice
1048

It’s all over for this year. Check out our bitesized rundown of what passed and what failed in the 65th Wyoming Legislature’s General Session. Stay tuned this weekend for more analysis on the session highs and lows with our Robert Geha.

Thanks for watching and be sure to follow Cowboy State Daily for our expanded statewide coverage of Wyoming news coming to your feed in the days ahead.

Income tax, party switching dead, lodging tax alive

in News/Taxes/Criminal justice
992

By Cowboy State Daily

The last of three bills that would have put restrictions on when voters can change party affiliations was among a number to die this week as the Legislature neared the end of its general session.

Legislators looking to wrap up their general session by Wednesday put in long hour this week finishing their work on a number of bills, eliminating several controversial measures.

HB 106 was the last of three bills that would have set time limits for people to change party affiliation. It would have set a deadline of May 1 for such changes. It was defeated in a 14-11 vote in its first Senate review.

Another bill killed would have imposed an income tax on large retail companies headquartered outside of Wyoming. HB 220 died without getting a review in a Senate committee.

Moving ahead, however, was a bill that would set a statewide lodging tax of 5 percent. HB 66 is set for a final vote in the Senate on Monday.

Approved with significant changes by the Senate was a bill originally designed to create a felony crime for animal abuse. HB 235 was amended to remove all language about the felony crime.

In Brief: Party switching bill dies in Senate

in News
Check mark in a box, ALT=box checked
977

By Cowboy State Daily

A bill that would have restricted when voters can change their party affiliations died in its first reading in the Senate on Thursday.

HB 106 was killed on a vote of 14-11.

The bill would have eliminated current laws that allow people to change party affiliation at the polls on the day of a primary election. Legislators looked at a number of possible deadlines for the change, from May 1 to two weeks prior to Wyoming’s August primary. As it entered the Senate, the bill also would have required a voter to present a photo ID to change party affiliation. That language was removed before senators voted to kill the bill itself.

The secretary of state’s office has reported that more than 12,000 people changed party affiliation prior to Wyoming’s last primary election. The Wyoming Republican Party had made putting time limits on those changes a priority for this session.

In Brief: Party switching bill clears Senate committee

in News
Wyoming party switching bill
960

By Cowboy State Daily

People wishing to change their party affiliations for a primary election would have to do so by May 1 under a bill that won approval from a Senate committee on Tuesday.

The Senate Agriculture Committee approved HB 106 on a vote of 4-1, sending it to the floor for review by the full Senate.

The bill has been changed a number of times since being introduced and the committee on Tuesday changed it again. Under amendments approved by the committee, Republicans or Democrats wishing to change parties would have to do so by May 1. Independents wishing to join a major party would have to do so no later than two week before a primary. Current Wyoming law allows people to change party affiliation at the polls on the day of a primary election. That practice would no longer be allowed.

In Wyoming’s last election, the secretary of state’s office reported more than 12,000 people changed party affiliation. The Wyoming Republican Party has made placing time restrictions on such changes a priority for the Legislature.

Wyoming Legislative Week-in-Review: Construction, Medicaid, minimum wage bills all die in Legislature

in News
899

By Cowboy State Daily

Funding for construction projects across the state fell in a unanimous vote in the Senate this week, joining several other high-profile bills that failed to make it through the legislative process.

SF 162 would have provided more than $50 million for various construction projects, including upgrades and new construction for community colleges and a new roof for the State Penitentiary. However, senators voted 30-0 against the measure in its final Senate review. Senate leaders including President Drew Perkins, R-Casper, said the bill’s death was part of the Senate’s attempt to save money to offset possible budget shortfalls next year.

Also killed was a bill that would have expanded the number of people in the state eligible to receive Medicaid. HB 244 was killed in its first review by the full House on Monday.

A measure that would have raised Wyoming’s minimum wage from $515 per hour to $8.50 also died. HB 273 was killed in its first review by the full House.

However, two bills aimed at limiting when voters can change their party affiliations were approved for further debate. HB 106 would require voters to change their affiliations at least two weeks before a primary election. SF 162 would require those changes to take place two weeks before absentee ballots for a primary election are mailed to voters — usually in mid-June. 

Also approved was HB 235, a bill creating a penalty of felony animal abuse.

Representatives approve their version of party switching bill

in News
Wyoming party switching bill
866

By Cowboy State Daily

One of the two measures aimed at limiting when voters can change their party affiliation won final approval from the House on Wednesday.

HB 106 was approved in a vote of 41-18, send the bill to the Senate for its review.

The bill would make voters who want to switch their party affiliations do so no later than two weeks before a primary election. It would also eliminate the option for voters to switch parties on the day of a primary election.

A Senate version of the bill won its final Senate approval on Tuesday. While the bills are similar, SF 160 has different deadlines for party switching — it would have to be done at least two weeks before the Secretary of State’s office sends absentee ballots for a primary election to voters. Those ballots are usually sent in mid-June.

Party switching bill clears second Senate reading

in News
840

By Cowboy State Daily

A bill that would limit when Wyoming voters can change their party affiliation moved one step nearer to final Senate approval on Monday.

SF 160 was approved in its second reading in the Senate, moving it to a third and final Senate vote on Tuesday.

The bill would require that any voter changing party affiliation do so two weeks before absentee ballots are mailed out for a primary election — generally in mid-June.

Under current law, voters can change affiliation at the polls during a primary election. The state Republican party had made a change in the system a priority for the Legislature’s general session.

Supporters maintain political party members should stick to their own parties rather than try to influence the outcome of another party’s primary.

“Party affiliations were there to engage in those things that we agree upon,” said Sen. Lynn Hutchings, R-Cheyenne. “When someone comes in to say ‘Hey, I’m going to pick your leader’ that doesn’t belong to our party, it’s never good.”

Opponents unsuccessfully argued that such limits on registration would discourage voter participation.

“Trying to get more people to vote should be what we’re trying to do,” said Sen. Mike Gierau, D-Jackson. “To limit how you can register, when you can register is a short-circuit to closing down the process.”

A similar bill that would have required affiliation changes to be made by May died in the Senate last week.

Updated February 4, 2019 at 7PM.

Party switching bill could be revived

in News
Voting day sign and stickers
749

By Cowboy State Daily

A bill that would limit when voters can change their party affiliations may be resurrected. SF 32 was killed by the Senate Corporation, Elections and Political Subdivisions Committee on Tuesday, but the committee’s chairman said he’ll bring the issue back up for another vote.

There is enough interest on the Senate floor to justify moving the bill out of the committee, said Sen. Bill Landen, R-Casper.

Under current law, voters can change their party affiliations on the day of a primary election. SF 32 would allow changes only before candidates begin filing for office — usually in early May.

Landen said there was not a lot of discussion on the bill in committee. He added he believes many members of the full Senate would like to review it.

Landen said he plans to bring the issue back to the committee on Thursday to see if members will approve it for more debate.

Go to Top