Bill to move back primary date advances in House

From the DMN:

A Texas House committee on Friday unanimously passed a military voting bill that, among other things, would push the state’s political primaries into April from March.

The legislation also would move primary runoffs into June and might compel many cities to move their local elections from May to some other date. A Senate version of the same bill would keep the primary in March.

The intent of Senate Bill 100, sponsored by Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, D-San Antonio, and Rep. Van Taylor, R-Plano, is to make it easier for military and other citizens abroad to vote. The bill would match up Texas law with new federal rules allowing citizens overseas at least 45 days to cast absentee ballots.

While the requirements only apply to federal elections, the 45-day requirement will force big changes to the state’s election calendar.

The bill passed Friday by the House Defense and Veterans’ Affairs committee would move the state’s 2012 primary from March 6 to the first Tuesday in April. Runoffs would move from April to June.

Here’s SB100, and here’s some background. SB100 has already passed the Senate, so House approval is all it needs. There’s some concern about the effect this might have on May elections – voting in April, May, and June is a lot – but I suppose that can be fixed as well. Regardless, this looks likely to happen, so we’d better be prepared for it.

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One Response to Bill to move back primary date advances in House

  1. TexMike says:

    This is great. I really miss the May primary. The change to March just entrenched incumbents. How can a newbie become known in two month campaign?

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