For the upcoming general election, we have had a number of write-in candidates file, which of course brings up a question: How do I vote for a write-in candidate?
Under each office, after the list of the regular candidates, there is a blank line with the words “Write In” next to it. On the paper ballot, just write in the name of the candidate for the appropriate office. On the electronic voting machines, when you touch on the blank line, it will bring up a keyboard for you to type in the name of the write-in candidate.
The only candidates who can receive write-in votes are those who have registered as write-in candidates. All others — including Mickey Mouse, who always gets votes in each election — will not be counted.
On an unrelated point, we have received a number of calls from voters concerned that they received a by-mail ballot and did not request one. During the Republican caucus meetings, forms were available for voters to sign that put them on the by-mail voter list. Many voters signed these forms not realizing they were signing up to vote by mail.
If you have received a bymail ballot and prefer to vote in person, please do the following: First, bring your unvoted by-mail ballot to the poll with you. Utah state law requires that your bymail ballot be “surrendered” to the poll worker before they can issue you a “ballot” to vote in person. Second, on the by-mail ballot that you are surrendering, write “remove name.” That will tell me to remove your name from the by-mail list when I get the surrendered ballots back in the office.
So why did the Republican Party go to the work and expense of printing off all of those forms to encourage people to vote by mail? Because statistics show that by-mail precincts have a higher voting rate than regular voting. For example, one Tooele County precinct that has always had a high voting percentage (53 percent) was made a permanent by-mail precinct. Their voting percentage went to 82 percent.
If you have any questions, please call me at (435) 843-3148 or email me at mgillette@co. tooele.ut.us.
Thanks for voting.
Marilyn Gillette is the Tooele County Clerk.