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April13, 2016

Skagit County to send out Presidential Primary ballots

County Auditor Youngquist’s office is sending out ballots May 3 to approximately 70,300 registered voters for Washington’s 2016 Presidential Primary. To assure military and overseas ballots can be returned in time to count, these ballots were sent in early April.

The 18-day voting period for the state’s Presidential Primary ends May 24. Ballots must be returned or postmarked by that date.

Skagit County Auditor Jeanne Youngquist wants to remind voters that to assure your ballot is counted you must:
1. Sign the declaration on the return envelope
2. Select your preferred political party (Democrat or Republican)
3. Vote for one Presidential candidate from the preferred party you selected
4. Be sure your ballot reaches the Election Office in time

Voters who wait until a few days before the deadline to fill out their ballot are urged to use a drop box, which will be closed and locked at 8 p.m. election night. Drop Box locations are listed in the ballot packet you receive.

Washington households will receive a state Presidential Primary Voters’ Pamphlet around the same time that ballots are sent. Voters who don’t receive a Voters’ Pamphlet should contact the Office of Secretary of State’s Election Division at (360) 902-4180, (800) 448-4881, or elections@sos.wa.gov.

Secretary of State Kim Wyman is forecasting a 42 percent voter turnout for the state Presidential Primary, Washington’s first since 2008. Skagit County usually surpasses the state average and will likely achieve well over a 50 percent return. The election momentum of this year’s Presidential election is likely to bring a record turnout all over the nation.

Both parties held caucuses, with Democrats using theirs as the method of allocating national convention delegates.Republicans will use the primary to allocate 100 percent of their 44 delegates to the national convention.

The Secretary of State website offers answers to frequently asked questions for the Presidential Primary: http://tinyurl.com/hx2pgub.

The last day for online or mail-in voter registration or changing one’s address before the Presidential Primary is April 25.

Skagit County residents who are not registered to vote in Washington have until May 16 to do so in person at the Skagit County Auditor’s Office, located at 700 South Second Street, Rm. 201 in Mount Vernon. Reach us at 360-416-1702 between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, or visit our website at www.skagitcounty.net and select “Elections.”