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Introduced Version Senate Bill 417 History

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Senate Bill No. 417

(By Senator Barnes)


[Introduced February 4, 2011; referred to the Committee on the Judiciary; and then to the Committee on Finance.]





A BILL to amend and reenact §3-1-8 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to elections and nominating procedures generally; and expanding the scope of the definition of a “political party”.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:

    That §3-1-8 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:


§3-1-8. Political party defined; parties or groups that may participate in municipal primary elections.

    Any affiliation of voters representing any principle or organization which, at the last preceding general election, polled for its candidate for Governor, United States President, United States Senator, Secretary of State, Treasurer, Auditor, Attorney General, Supreme Court of Appeals or Commissioner of Agriculture, at least one percent of the total number of votes cast for all candidates for that office in the state shall be any one of those public offices, or any affiliation of voters that register under article two, chapter three of this code at least one twentieth of one percent of the total number of voters voting in the last election for any one of those public offices, is a political party, within the meaning and for the purpose of this chapter: Provided, That notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this section, the governing body of any municipality may, by ordinance adopted by the affirmative vote of at least three fourths of the members of such the governing body by recorded vote, provide that municipal political parties or groups within such the municipality that do not meet the requirements of this section for classification as a political party may participate in the primary elections of any such the municipality. Any such The ordinance shall contain provisions implementing the foregoing proviso, which implementing provisions shall conform as nearly as practicable to any general provisions of law relating to municipal primary elections.

    NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to increase the ability of political parties to obtain ballot access by expanding the scope of the definition of political party.

    Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.

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