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Noting ‘minor flaws,’ Wyoming governor allows bill restricting crossover party voting into law

(Dan Cepeda, Oil City News File)

CASPER, Wyo. — A bill restricting when Wyoming voters can change party affiliation appears to be headed into law.

According to a release from Governor Mark Gordon’s office issued late Thursday night, the governor notified House Speaker Albert Sommers that he would allow House Bill 103 to take effect without the governor’s signature.

“There were no constitutional concerns raised with this bill, and it had a near super-majority of support in the Legislature,” the release said. “Still, the Governor notes the crossover voting legislation may create confusion for voters. But, the flaws were not sufficient to issue a veto.”

The bill brings an end to a tradition allowing Wyoming voters to change party affiliation on the day of voting.

The bill “creates a 96-day period ahead of the primary election, forcing voters to affiliate with a party before the nomination period opens for candidates,” according to WyoFile.

The push to eliminate crossover voting in Wyoming gained steam after now-governor Gordon secured the nomination for governor in 2018. His opponents blamed Democrats for undermining their efforts, even if those claims have been proven to be statistically impossible, according to the Casper Star-Tribune.