LOCAL NEWS

Utah Republicans ‘confident’ for caucus night Super Tuesday

Mar 4, 2024, 6:48 PM | Updated: Mar 5, 2024, 6:15 am

SALT LAKE CITY –– Utahns are heading out Tuesday to cast their votes for who they want for president during Super Tuesday.

For Republicans, they’ll be gathering at their local caucus night at precincts all over the state instead of a traditional primary where ballots are mailed and the election is administered by the state.

State and local county GOP leaders say they’re confident about the rollout of the presidential preference poll and election for state and county delegates that will happen at 2,500 locations across the state on Tuesday.

“We’re very confident about tomorrow’s caucus night,” said Utah GOP Party Chair Robert Axson.

Potential mishaps

In Davis County, party leaders said they’re getting prepared for any potential snafus, including ballot stuffing, or long lines.

“I feel like we’ve done a lot of planning ahead of time. We’ve thought through it,” said Tyson Plastow who’s organizing caucus nights for more than 300 precinct locations in the county.

Plastow said to address ballot stuffing concerns, they plan to put their paper ballots in clear, “tamper proof bags” that can be sealed after the vote.

“All the voting, all the voting in the county will take place in front of everybody so everybody can be witness,” he said.

He also said the county has 700 volunteers who’ve been trained on tallying and other security processes.

Davis County Party Chair Yemi Anunsi said his county is also working to help people vote absentee.

“We have our precinct chairs who are making the drives in their neighborhood to pick up some of these absentee ballots or some of them, you know, letting them know what they need to do, turn it into a neighbor that can bring it to the to the precinct,” he said.

How to participate

Only registered Republicans can participate in the Republican caucus. So long as you’re not registered with another party, you can register to vote and affiliate at your precinct location.

“We have very few limitations on who can vote. In fact, we only have one limitation on who can vote in a Republican primary or a Republican caucus. And that is you have to be a registered voter who affiliates with the Republican Party,” Axson said.

When you show up, you’ll be casting a vote for which Republican you want to be president – there are three left on the ballot, Nikki Haley, Donald Trump and Ryan Binkley.

You will also be voting on the people you want to represent you as state and county delegates – those are the people that then go on to cast votes at the state and national republican conventions.

How to vote absentee

You can still cast a vote if you can’t make it to your precinct location or stay for the full time. The party is allowing voters to print an absentee ballot if they pre-register.

You’ll need a photocopy of your ID, and someone in your precinct can turn it in for you. Or, you can also drop it off.

Precinct locations will open at 6 p.m. and voting starts at 7 p.m. Each precinct will start with the delegate votes first, the final votes will be for the presidential preference poll. Precincts are not allowed to close voting for the presidential preference poll before 8 p.m.

“Get there by 8 p.m. and you will be fine. Your vote will count as long as it’s for the presidential piece. Now, for the delegate races, you’ll need to be there prior to those elections. So, if you’ve gotten there after the delegate race elections, you’ve maybe missed out on that, but you would still be able to participate in the presidential poll,” Axson said.

Axson said they are expecting turnout to be north of 100,000 people statewide. As of Monday, he said he had about 40,000 registrations.

“I think we will have very broad participation in a sense that we’re at a rate that Utahns can be very confident that it was a representative number,” he said.

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Utah Republicans ‘confident’ for caucus night Super Tuesday