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Another interesting prefiled bill for the 2012 session of the Missouri General Assembly, from Representative Sue Allen (r). Voter registration and closed primary voting by party:





4451L.01I                                                                                                     D. ADAM CRUMBLISS, Chief Clerk


To repeal sections 115.135, 115.137, 115.155, 115.157, 115.163, 115.225, 115.249, and 115.637, RSMo, and to enact in lieu thereof nine new sections relating to primary elections, with penalty provisions.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the state of Missouri, as follows:


4. Any person updating or changing such person’s party affiliation as required under section 115.166 may update or change such party affiliation for the upcoming election at any time before the deadline for registration for such election established in this section. Any update or change to such person’s party affiliation made after the deadline for registration established in this section shall be effective only for subsequent elections.


3. For all primary elections held after January 1, 2013, any person who is entitled to vote in such primary under this chapter shall be entitled to vote only the official primary election ballot of the political party designated in the person’s voter registration. Any person attempting to vote or voting a primary election ballot of a political party other than that for which the person’s designated party affiliation qualifies the person to vote shall be guilty of a class four election offense as provided in section 115.637.


3. Any person who fails to designate a party affiliation shall be registered without a party affiliation. The election authority shall notify the person by mail that the person has been registered without a party affiliation and that the person may change or update the person’s party affiliation as provided in section 115.166.


115.166. Any person desiring to change or update such person’s party affiliation shall notify the person’s election authority with a signed written notice in the same manner as a change of address is filed under section 115.165.

115.225. 1. Before use by election authorities in this state, the secretary of state shall approve the marking devices and the automatic tabulating equipment used in electronic voting systems and may promulgate rules and regulations to implement the intent of sections 115.225 to 115.235….(5) Permits each voter in a primary election to vote for the candidates of [only one] the political party [announced by the voter in advance] designated by such voter in the person’s voter registration as provided under this chapter


(20) Voting or attempting to vote a primary election ballot of a political party other than that for which the person’s designated party affiliation qualifies the person to vote.

[emphasis in original]

That last one makes no sense whatsoever. It must be a typo.

If this passes it’ll eliminate one of the most fun enterprises in Missouri politics – crossing over to a contested republican primary to vote for the most outrageous wingnut.

And, it would end the rude practice of responding, when someone is pontificating on politics with the preface, “I’ve been a registered [name of political party] for [random number of decades],”  with “No, you aren’t, there is no voter registration by political party in Missouri.” They really hate that. And it’s really fun, too. Especially when it’s in front of a large group of people.