PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY ELECTION
MARCH 5, 2023 PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY ELECTION – NEW SEMI-OPEN PRIMARY: Effective January 1, 2024, Maine is transitioning from a closed primary system to a semi-open primary. This means that unenrolled voters will now be able to participate in the Presidential Primary and the June 11, 2024 State Primary. Voters enrolled in a specific party can only vote in that party’s primary. Registered voters with an Unenrolled status can vote in ONE primary of the party of their choice.
Reminder: Voters Enrolled in a Party
- Unenrolled Voters – Voters who are not enrolled in a party may choose to vote in one party’s primary.
- Voters enrolled in a party – may only vote in that party’s primary.
- Voters that are enrolled in a qualified party participating in the primary must be provided with that party ballot, even if the voter selects a different ballot on the absentee ballot request. Only unenrolled voters can participate in a party’s primary without enrolling in the party.
- Voters enrolled in a qualifying party (Forward, No Labels or People’s) do not have an option to select a ballot. They must either enroll in a qualified party or become unenrolled to participate in the primary.
- Voters that change or withdraw their enrollment within 15 days of the election are ineligible to participate in the primary. Reminder: A voter must remain in a party for 3 months before changing parties or unenrolling. They must do so at least 15 days before the primary in order to be eligible to vote in the primary.
Application for Absentee Ballot:
- There have been changes to the March 5, 2024 Presidential Primary Application for Absentee Ballot to request ONE party primary ballot if the voter requesting is “Unenrolled” status.
Each qualified party had until October 1, 2023 to file a certification with the Secretary of State to participate in the Presidential Primary. The Democratic and Republican parties are the only parties that will hold primaries on March 5th . The Green Independent and Libertarian parties will not be participating. The chart below illustrates the ballot options for the Presidential Primary based on voter enrollment:
Voter Enrollment Status Ballot Options
Unenrolled May select either a Democratic or Republican ballot.
Democratic No ballot selection – must receive Democratic ballot.
Green Independent No ballot selection – Party not participating in Primary.
Libertarian No ballot selection – Party not participating in Primary.
Republican No ballot selection – must receive Republican ballot.
No Labels (qualifying) No ballot selection (qualifying party). If No Labels becomes “qualified” in January, the party will still not be participating in primary.
This information is directly from the Secretary of State’s Office Division of Elections and is available on maine.gov .