Ballots for the 2014 primary election on June 24 will begin going out in the mail Monday, and there should be a lot of interest when it comes to the Republican ballot.
While the Democrats in Weld County won’t have any races to mull over, the Republican ballot in Weld has a lot of sizzle. Three of the four candidates — Barbara Kirkmeyer, Scott Renfroe and Ken Buck — in the 4th Congressional District race hail from Weld. In addition to the 4th CD race, the Weld sheriff’s race between Keith Olson and Steve Reams, the Weld commissioner at-large race between Steve Moreno and Lyle Achziger, the Colorado House District 63 race between Lori Saine and Bruce Sparrow and the Weld clerk and recorder race between Tony Trevino and Carly Koppes should create decent GOP voter turnout in Weld County.
“Being that we do have a number of primaries between the sheriff, commissioner race, clerk’s race and the CD4, with three candidates from Weld County running out of the four, I don’t know what the turnout will be for Republicans,” said Moreno, the Weld County clerk and recorder, who is running for county commissioner.
According to the Weld County Clerk and Recorder’s Office, the primary election will be conducted as a mail ballot election. To participate, a voter must be affiliated with the American Constitution, Democratic or Republican Party. Unaffiliated voters may affiliate at any time before and through June 24 to participate in the primary election. Go to www.govotecolorado.com to verify if you are registered to vote.
Rudy Santos, Weld County elections manager, said there are 136,717 active voters in Weld — 32,775 Democrats, 52,806 Republicans, 49,523 unaffiliateds and 1,613 voters from other parties.
In the 2012 primary election, there were 103,022 voters including 24,289 Democrats, 43,897 Republicans and 34,043 unaffiliateds meaning the unaffiliateds gained the most support by an increase of more than 15,000 voters in the past two years.
As far as those who actually voted in the 2012 primary election in Weld, the Weld Clerk and Recorder’s Office said 15,331 Republicans and 5,547 Democrats cast ballots.
Moreno said it’s hard to predict the turnout this time since it’s a mid-term election and is not as emotional with the voters as if it were a presidential election.
“I’ve been out knocking on doors myself personally for my campaign, and I think some of the voters really are not aware that we’re going to have a primary this June,” Moreno said. “In the past, Colorado primaries used to be in August, but they changed that a couple of years ago so having primaries now in June is a little bit different. They’re a lot sooner than what voters are normally used to seeing, but it’s not the first time. It’s hard to say. Are we going to have a 30 or 35 percent turnout? If I was to guess at this point right now from what I know and what I’ve seen, my expectation is that we’re going to see about a 35 percent turnout.”