I am writing in support of L.D. 231, An Act to Establish Open Primaries. L.D. 231 would allow semi-open primaries, meaning unenrolled voters would be permitted to cast one ballot in the primary of their choice. Republicans would not be able to vote in Democratic primaries and Democrats would not be able to vote in Republican primaries.

I support semi-open primaries because I support voting. It’s that simple. I want as many people as possible to vote in as many decisions as possible. Democracy can only function when everyone has a voice.

Roughly one-third the people of Kennebec and Somerset do not belong to a political party. This means their voice on the candidates is not heard until the general election. They are not alone.

Under Maine law, 32% of registered voters are being silenced. Our friends and neighbors who are unenrolled are prohibited from participating in taxpayer-funded primary elections simply because they opted not to join a political party. Often the reason they do not want to join a political party is because they believe there are good ideas in both parties and that compromise is important.

Our democracy would be made stronger by allowing them to exercise their right to vote. I strongly urge my former colleagues in the legislature to join the 80% of Maine voters who support semi-open primaries and to vote in support of L.D. 231.

 

Maeghan Maloney

district attorney

Kennebec and Somerset counties

Augusta

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