Topics
Code Section
Tool bar
Colorado > Colorado Electoral Code > Elections - Access To Ballot By Candidates

1-4-701. Party nominations to be made by convention

Overview of Statute

Conventions, or committees authorized by a convention, can nominate candidates for vacancies to unexpired terms of representatives in congress and for presidential electors and may also select delegates to national political conventions. Certificates of nomination must contain the name of the office for which the person is nominated and the individual’s name and address, as well as, in three or fewer words, the name of the political party. No certificate shall contain the names of more candidates for any office than there are offices to fill. Certificates of nomination must be received and filed with the secretary of state no later than sixty days before the general or congressional vacancy election. Persons nominated under this section will be deemed to have accepted the nomination unless they file a written declination of the nomination within four days after the adjournment of the convention with the secretary of state. If transmitted by fax, the original declination must also be filed and postmarked within ten days of the adjournment.

Statute

(1) Any convention of delegates of a political party or any committee authorized by resolution of the convention may nominate candidates for vacancies to unexpired terms of representatives in congress and for presidential electors and also may select delegates to national political conventions.

(2) (a) The certificate of nomination shall contain the name of the office for which each person is nominated and the person’s name and address and shall designate, in not more than three words, the political party which the convention or committee represents.

(b) No certificate of nomination shall contain the names of more candidates for any office than there are offices to fill. If any certificate does contain the names of more candidates than there are offices to fill, only those names which come first in order on the certificate and are equally numbered with the number of offices to be filled shall be taken as nominated. No person shall sign more than one certificate of nomination for any office.

(c) When the nomination is made by a committee, the certificate of nomination shall also contain a copy of the resolution passed at the convention which authorized the committee to make the nomination.

(d) In the case of presidential electors, the names of the candidates for president and vice president may be added to the name of the political party in the certificate of nomination.

(3) Certificates of nomination shall be received and filed with the secretary of state no later than sixty days before the general or congressional vacancy election.

(4) Any person nominated in accordance with this section by any of the major political parties shall be deemed to have accepted the nomination unless the candidate files with the secretary of state a written declination of the nomination no later than four days after the adjournment of the convention. The declination may be transmitted by facsimile transmission no later than four days after the adjournment of the convention. If the declination is transmitted by facsimile transmission, the original declination must also be filed and postmarked no later than ten days after the adjournment of the convention.

 

Source: L. 80: Entire article R&RE, p. 329, § 1, effective January 1, 1981.L. 85: (3) amended, p. 248, § 6, effective July 1.L. 88: (4) amended, p. 1429, § 1, effective June 11.L. 92: Entire part amended, p. 683, § 6, effective January 1, 1993.L. 99: (3) and (4) amended, p. 764, § 23, effective May 20.L. 2012: (4) amended, (HB 12-1292), ch. 181, p. 680, § 12, effective May 17.

Editor’s note: Articles 1 to 13 were numbered as articles 1, 3, 4, 9 to 19, and 21 of chapter 49, C.R.S. 1963. The substantive provisions of these articles were repealed and reenacted in 1980, resulting in the addition, relocation, and elimination of sections as well as subject matter. For amendments to these articles prior to 1980, consult the Colorado statutory research explanatory note and the table itemizing the replacement volumes and supplements to the original volume of C.R.S. 1973 beginning on page vii in the front of this volume. Former C.R.S. numbers prior to 1980 are shown in editor’s notes following those sections that were relocated. For a detailed comparison of these articles for 1980, see the comparative tables located in the back of the index.

Cross references: For school elections, see articles 30, 31, and 42 of title 22; for elections for removal of county seats, see article 8 of title 30; for municipal elections, see article 10 of title 31; for special district elections, see part 8 of article 1 of title 32; for exemption of certain statutory proceedings from the rules of civil procedure, see C.R.C.P. 81; for recall from office, see article XXI of the state constitution; for recall of state and county officers, see part 1 of article 12 of this title; for recall of municipal officers, see part 5 of article 4 of title 31; for recall of directors of special districts, see § § 32-1-906, 32-1-907.


Editor’s note: Articles 1 to 13 were repealed and reenacted in 1980. This article was numbered as articles 10 and 11 of chapter 49, C.R.S. 1963. For additional historical information concerning the repeal and reenactment of articles 1 to 13 of this title in 1980, see the editor’s note immediately following the title heading for this title.

Cross references: For election offenses relating to access to ballot by candidates, see part 4 of article 13 of this title.

Law reviews: For article, “Constitutional Law”, which discusses a Tenth Circuit decision dealing with minor party ballot access, see 61 Den. L.J. 217 (1984); for article, “Constitutional Law”, which discusses a Tenth Circuit decision dealing with minor party ballot access, see 62 Den. U. L. Rev. 101 (1985).

Editor’s note: The provisions of this section are similar to several former provisions of § 1-14-107 as they existed prior to 1980. For a detailed comparison, see the comparative tables located in the back of the index.

Cross references: For methods of nomination, see § § 1-4-502 and 1-4-503; for objections to nominations, see § 1-4-909.
 
ANNOTATION
 
I. General Consideration.
II. More Candidates Than Offices to Fill.
III. Filing Certificates with Secretary of State.
IV. Miscellaneous.
 
I.GENERAL CONSIDERATION.

Annotator’s note. The following annotations include cases decided under former provisions similar to this section.

The provision for acceptance of a nomination is so plain that it needs no construction other than that which its own language imports. O’Connor v. Smithers, 45 Colo. 23, 99 P. 46 (1908).

No convention or body of men can compel another to be a candidate for office against his will. O’Connor v. Smithers, 45 Colo. 23, 99 P. 46 (1908).

Only the political parties have the right to nominate by a convention or nominating committee. Schafer v. Whipple, 25 Colo. 400, 55 P. 180 (1898).

Nominees by either of the two leading political parties are not required to file an acceptance. O’Connor v. Smithers, 45 Colo. 23, 99 P. 46 (1908).
 
II.MORE CANDIDATES THAN OFFICES TO FILL.

The purpose of limiting the number of names on a certificate of nomination to the number of offices to be filled is to prevent the same persons nominating candidates for the same office by certificate as individuals under two or more party names. O’Connor v. Smithers, 45 Colo. 23, 99 P. 46 (1908).

An elector once having exercised the right to join in a certificate as an individual, nominating a candidate for office under some name adopted by the signers, cannot join in nominating the same person for the same office under some other name. O’Connor v. Smithers, 45 Colo. 23, 99 P. 46 (1908).
 
III.FILING CERTIFICATE WITH SECRETARY OF STATE.

Certificates of nomination must be presented for filing at the office of the secretary of state to some person in charge thereof during business hours. Cowie v. Means, 39 Colo. 1, 88 P. 485 (1906).

Certificates not filed in office of the secretary of state. Certain alleged certificates of nomination to fill vacancies were handed for filing to the secretary of state, on board a train bound for another city, at the union depot in Denver, preceding the general election to be held on November 6. It was held, that such action did not constitute a legal filing of such certificates, as of that date, it being necessary to tender such certificates for filing at the office of the secretary of state to some person in charge during business hours. Cowie v. Means, 39 Colo. 1, 88 P. 485 (1906).
 
IV.MISCELLANEOUS.

The convention revoked nomination power of the committee. A party convention sat two days, and on the first day it adopted a resolution empowering a committee to nominate the ticket which it had assembled; on the second day, without expressly rescinding the resolution, it proceeded to nominate a full ticket and then adjourned sine die. It was held that the action of the convention on the second day was a revocation of the power delegated to the committee. Leighton v. Bates, 24 Colo. 303, 50 P. 856 (1897).

Secretary of state has no power to decide between two sets of nominations. When two sets of nominations, both by conventions purporting to have been held by the same political party, and each in apparent conformity with this section, are certified to the secretary of state, he has no power to decide between them, but should certify both tickets to the county clerks in order that both may be printed upon the official ballots. People ex rel. Eaton v. Dist. Court, 18 Colo. 26, 31 P. 339 (1892).

 

Definition [Political party]

Any group of registered electors who, by petition or assembly, nominate candidates for the official general election ballot. “Political party” includes affiliated party organizations at the state, county, and election district levels, and all such affiliates are considered to be a single entity for the purposes of this article, except as otherwise provided in section 7. Section 2(13) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.

Definition [State]

A state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Ballot]

(a) A federal write-in absentee ballot;

(b) A ballot specifically prepared or distributed for use by a covered voter in accordance with this article; or

(c) A ballot cast by a covered voter in accordance with this article.

(2) “Covered voter” means:

(a) A uniformed-service voter defined in paragraph (a) of subsection (9) of this section who is a resident of this state but who is absent from this state by reason of active duty and who otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;

(b) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, was last eligible to vote in this state and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;

(c) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, would have been last eligible to vote in this state had the voter then been of voting age and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements; or

(d) An overseas voter who was born outside the United States, is not described in paragraph (b) or (c) of this subsection (2), and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements if the last place where a parent, legal guardian, spouse, or civil union partner of the voter was, or under this article would have been, eligible to vote before leaving the United States is within this state.

C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Person]

Any natural person, partnership, committee, association, corporation, labor organization, political party, or other organization or group of persons. Section 2(11) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.

Definition [Election]

Any election under the “Uniform Election Code of 1992” or the “Colorado Municipal Election Code of 1965”, article 10 of title 31, C.R.S. C.R.S. § 1-7.5-103.

Definition [Secretary]

The Colorado secretary of state. C.R.S. § 1-1.5-102.

Definition [Committee]

The committee of signers described in section 1-12-108(2). C.R.S. § 1-12-100.5.

Definition [Candidate]

Any person who seeks nomination or election to any state or local public office that is to be voted on in this state at any primary election, general election, school district election, special district election, or municipal election. “Candidate” also includes a judge or justice of any court of record who seeks to be retained in office pursuant to the provisions of section 25 of article VI. A person is a candidate for election if the person has publicly announced an intention to seek election to public office or retention of a judicial office and thereafter has received a contribution or made an expenditure in support of the candidacy. A person remains a candidate for purposes of this article so long as the candidate maintains a registered candidate committee. A person who maintains a candidate committee after an election cycle, but who has not publicly announced an intention to seek election to public office in the next or any subsequent election cycle, is a candidate for purposes of this article. Section 2(2) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.

Cases

colorado Cases

Case Name: O’Connor v. Smithers

Citation: 45 Colo. 23, 99 P. 46 (1908)

Year: 1908

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/f3b5383ad8c560f6f34902303f7069f6

Case Summary: Court held in favor of the secretary of state in a contest involving objections to certificates of nomination. Contestors' complaint also failed to adhere to the required nomination procedure.

Case Name: Cowie v. Means

Citation: 39 Colo. 1, 88 P. 485 (1906)

Year: 1906

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/97ff4efc3669fcaf2754f387a76ed5bf?query=cowie%2[...]

Case Summary: Court rejected a certificate to fill a vacancy, conducted under the Colorado Australian Ballot Act, because of improper signatures certifying the certificate. As a void certificate, the powers provided by the certificate were not enforceable.  

Case Name: Leighton v. Bates

Citation: 50 P. 856 (Colo. 1897)

Year: 1897

Case PDF: Leighton v. Bates

Case Summary: Setting aside judgment of dismissal of petitioners' protest against the filing of another certificate of nominations for their party, because the district court refused to hear evidence.

Case Name: Schafer v. Whipple

Citation: 55 P. 180 (Colo. 1898)

Year: 1898

Case PDF: Schafer v. Whipple

Case Summary: Holding that a set of nominees, made by a petition of electors, could be designated by an emblem; right to an emblem was not limited to certain classes of political parties and their nominating committees.

Case Name: People ex rel. Eaton v. Dist. Court

Citation: 18 Colo. 26, 31 P. 339 (1892)

Year: 1892

Case PDF: People ex rel. Eaton v. Dist. Court

Case Summary: Upholding a district court's jurisdiction to hear a contest between competing factions of a political party at a political convention. The district court, and not solely the secretary of state, may hear claims related to the use of an Australian ballot according to statute.  

Out-of-State Cases

Federal Cases