AJ News ‘Election Section’ brings questions to the newspaper elections follows.
What is a primary election?
A primary election is an election that narrows the field of candidates before the general election. Presidential and statewide primary elections are generally partisan. Primary elections are one means by which a political party nominates candidates for the next general election.
Sometimes primaries are used in nonpartisan elections just to lower the number of candidates with those candidates receiving more than 50 percent of the vote in the primary being automatically elected (as in Apache Junction City Council elections). If no candidate receives a majority, twice as many candidates pass the primary as can win in the general election, so a single seat election primary would allow the top two primary candidates to participate in the general election following.
When is the Arizona primary election?
Primary election will be held in Arizona on Tuesday, Aug. 28. Early ballots have already been sent out and can be returned at any time and polls will be open from 6 a.m. until 7 p.m. on the day of the election.
Where is my polling place?
There is a special page on the Pinal County Elections department website that finds your polling place for you. You just enter your name.
Why is the primary election important? Many times, contests for state or local partisan offices are decided in the primary election if there is no opposing party candidate for the winner of a primary election to run against in the general election. Or, sometimes if the candidate from the opposing party is a weak one, the real competition for the seat occurs at the primary election level.
When is the general election?
The general election, which will be nationwide because it includes a presidential race, will be held Tuesday, Nov. 6.
Will the Apache Junction/Gold Canyon News run more local candidate profiles before the general election?
Yes. The winners of the local primaries and all nonpartisan candidates running in the general election will be profiled.
If I am not registered to vote now, can I still vote in the general election? Yes, people who want to vote in the 2012 General Election can still register to vote through Monday, Oct. 8.
By Betty Swanson