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1-4-801. Designation of party candidates by petition

Overview of Statute

Candidates for primary elections can be placed on the ballot by petition. Each petition will state the name of the office, the candidate’s name and address, and political party affiliation. No petition can contain the name of more than one person for the same office.

Petitions for candidates for county offices will be signed by only electors eligible to vote within the district or political subdivision for which the officer is to be elected. Except as otherwise provided, it must contain signatures equal in number to twenty percent of votes cast in the political subdivision at the contested or uncontested primary election for the political party’s candidate for the office for which the petition is being circulated, or, if there was no primary, at the last preceding general election for which there was a candidate for the office.

Candidates for general assembly, district attorney, or a district office higher than a county office must gather signatures from at least thirty percent of votes cast in the primary election or, if no primary election was held, during the last general election involving the office. For every election starting in 1999, petitions must contain at least one thousand five hundred signatures from eligible electors in each congressional district.

Statute

(1) Candidates for political party nominations to be made by primary election may be placed on the primary election ballot by petition. Every petition to nominate candidates for a primary election shall state the name of the office for which the person is a candidate and the candidate’s name and address and shall designate in not more than three words the name of the political party which the candidate represents. No petition shall contain the name of more than one person for the same office.

(2) The signature requirements for the petition are as follows:

(a) Every petition in the case of a candidate for any county office shall be signed by electors eligible to vote within the county commissioner district or political subdivision for which the officer is to be elected. Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (e) of this subsection (2), the petition shall require signers equal in number to twenty percent of the votes cast in the political subdivision at the contested or uncontested primary election for the political party’s candidate for the office for which the petition is being circulated or, if there was no primary election, at the last preceding general election for which there was a candidate for the office.

(b) Every petition in the case of a candidate for member of the general assembly, district attorney, or any district office greater than a county office shall be signed by eligible electors resident within the district for which the officer is to be elected. The petition shall require the lesser of one thousand signers or signers equal to thirty percent of the votes cast in the district at the contested or uncontested primary election for the political party’s candidate for the office for which the petition is being circulated or, if there was no primary election, at the last preceding general election for which there was a candidate for the office.

(c) (I) Repealed.

(II) On and after January 1, 1999, every petition in the case of a candidate for an office to be filled by vote of the electors of the entire state shall be signed by at least one thousand five hundred eligible electors in each congressional district.

(d) (Deleted by amendment, L. 93, p. 1405, § 29, effective July 1, 1993.)

(e) Where the electors of the county have voted to increase the membership of the board of county commissioners from three to five pursuant to section 30-10-306.5, C.R.S., or to decrease the membership of the board from five to three pursuant to section 30-10-306.7, C.R.S., for the next two primary elections immediately following an election at which the voters have approved the change in the membership of the board, the signature requirements for the petition are as follows:

(I) Where any one or more commissioners to be elected to the board of county commissioners will be voted on by voters of the whole county, every petition must require signers equal in number to twenty percent of the average of all votes cast in each commissioner district in the county during the prior two contested or uncontested primary elections for the political party’s candidates in each county commissioner district that held a primary election in either of those elections. If no primary election was held in either year, the calculation must be based on the most recent preceding general election for which the party had a candidate on the ballot, and every petition must require signers equal in number to twenty percent of the average of all votes cast for the political party’s candidates for commissioner in each commissioner district in which the party had a candidate on the ballot.

(II) Where any one or more commissioners to be elected to the board of county commissioners will be voted on only by the electors residing in a particular county commissioner district, the determination of the required number of signers must begin with a calculation of the average of all votes cast in each commissioner district in the county during the prior two contested or uncontested primary elections for the political party’s candidates in the county commissioner districts that held a primary election in either of those elections. Upon a determination of the average, that number must then be divided by the total number of commissioner districts in the county where commissioners are voted on only by the electors residing in the district, whether three or five. After completing this calculation, every petition must require signers equal in number to twenty percent of the number realized. If no primary election was held in either year, the calculation must be based on the most recent preceding general election for which the party had a candidate on the ballot, and every petition must require signers equal in number to the following calculation:

(A) Twenty percent of the average of all votes cast for the political party’s candidates for commissioner in each commissioner district in which the party had a candidate on the ballot; and

(B) Divide the number found in sub-subparagraph (A) of this subparagraph (II) by the total number of commissioner districts in the county where commissioners are voted on only by the electors residing in the district, whether three or five.

(f) Following the first two primary elections that are conducted after a change in the membership of the board of county commissioners pursuant to section 30-10-306.5 or 30-10-306.7, C.R.S., in accordance with the requirements of paragraph (e) of this subsection (2), the signature requirements for a petition for a county commissioner candidate who is affiliated with a major political party must follow the procedures specified in paragraph (a) of this subsection (2).

(3) No person shall be placed in nomination by petition on behalf of any political party unless the person was affiliated with the political party, as shown on the registration books of the county clerk and recorder, no later than the first business day of the January immediately preceding the election for which the person desires to be placed in nomination.

(4) No person who attempted and failed to receive at least ten percent of the votes for the nomination of a political party assembly for a particular office shall be placed in nomination by petition on behalf of the political party for the same office.

(5) Party petitions shall not be circulated nor any signatures be obtained prior to the first Monday in February. Petitions shall be filed no later than eighty-five days before the primary election.

 

Source: L. 92: Entire part R&RE, p. 684, § 7, effective January 1, 1993.L. 93: (2) amended, p. 1405, § 29, effective July 1.L. 98: (2)(a) to (2)(c) amended, p. 634, § 6, effective May 6.L. 99: (5) amended, p. 764, § 24, effective May 20.L. 2000: (1) amended, p. 2029, § 5, effective August 2.L. 2005: (5) amended, p. 1399, § 16, effective June 6; (5) amended, p. 1434, § 16, effective June 6.L. 2010: (3) amended, (HB 10-1271), ch. 324, p. 1502, § 4, effective May 27.L. 2011: (5) amended, (SB 11-189), ch. 243, p. 1064, § 9, effective May 27.L. 2013: (2)(a) amended and (2)(e) and (2)(f) added, (SB 13-243), ch. 268, p. 1410, § 1, effective May 24.

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: Articles 1 to 13 were repealed and reenacted in 1980, and this part 8 was subsequently repealed and reenacted in 1992, resulting in the addition, relocation, and elimination of sections as well as subject matter. For amendments to this part 8 prior to 1992, 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 and the editor’s note following the title heading. Former C.R.S. section numbers are shown in editor’s notes following those sections that were relocated in 1992. For a detailed comparison of articles 1 to 13 for 1980 and of this part 8 for 1992, see the comparative tables located in the back of the index.

Editor’s note: (1) The provisions of this section are similar to several former provisions of § 1-4-603 as they existed prior to 1992. For a detailed comparison, see the comparative tables located in the back of the index.

(2) Subsection (2)(c)(I)(B) provided for the repeal of subsection (2)(c)(I), effective January 1, 1999. (See L. 98, p. 634.)
 
ANNOTATION

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

In addition to nominees designated by party assembly, a party member desirous of the party’s nomination at the primary election may become a candidate by filing a petition signed by the requisite number of the electors of his party residing within the district from which he seeks to be elected. Anderson v. Mullaney, 166 Colo. 533, 444 P.2d 878 (1968).

And it is permissible and possible for several candidates for the party’s nomination to be placed on the primary ballot by this procedure. Anderson v. Mullaney, 166 Colo. 533, 444 P.2d 878 (1968).

Definition [Circulated]

Presented to an elector for the collection of a signature and other information required by this article. C.R.S. § 1-12-100.5.

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 [Political subdivision]

A governing subdivision of the state, including counties, municipalities, school districts, and special districts. C.R.S. § 1-7.5-103.

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 [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: Anderson v. Mullaney

Citation: 444 P.2d 878 (Colo. 1968)

Year: 1968

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/8b66c712c877153ebfb30a600f65546f

Case Summary: Holding that petitioner, who had been designated by a vacancy committee of the party county central committee as a candidate of county assembly, was entitled to have his name placed on ballot as the assembly candidate even though another party successfully challenged petitioner’s right to have his name appear on the primary ballot.

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