1-4-601. Designation of candidates for primary election
Overview of Statute
Assemblies of major political parties may make designations of candidates for the primary ballot at an assembly no later than seventy-three days before the primary election. Candidates receiving thirty percent or more of the votes of all the accredited assembly delegates present and voting will be certified by affidavit by the presiding officer and secretary of the assembly.
If no candidate receives thirty percent or more on the first ballot, a second ballot with all the candidates for the office will be cast. If on the second ballot no candidate receives thirty percent or more of the votes, the two candidates receiving the highest number of votes will be certified as primary candidates by the assembly. This certificate of designation must meet certain criteria.
Candidates must also file a written acceptance of candidacy within four days of the adjournment of the assembly. If acceptance is transmitted by facsimile transmission, original acceptance must also be filed and postmarked within ten days of the adjournment of the assembly. Candidates who do not file on time are viewed as having declined the designation, unless the late filing is the result of a failure to timely file the certificate of designation. To be eligible for designation by assembly, a candidate must be affiliated with the party on the registration books by the first business day of January preceding the primary election.
(1)(a) Assemblies of the major political parties may make assembly designations of candidates for nomination on the primary election ballot. Except as provided in subsection (1)(b) of this section, an assembly shall be held no later than seventy-three days preceding the primary election.
(b)(I) Notwithstanding subsection (1)(a) of this section, due to public health concerns, for the 2020 primary election, a party assembly shall be held on or before April 25, 2020.
(II) This subsection (1)(b) is repealed, effective December 31, 2020.
(2)(a) An assembly must take no more than two ballots for party candidates for each office to be filled at the next general election. Every candidate receiving thirty percent or more of the votes of all duly accredited assembly delegates who are present and voting on that office must be certified by affidavit of the presiding officer and secretary of the assembly. If no candidate receives thirty percent or more of the votes of all duly accredited assembly delegates who are present and voting, a second ballot must be cast on all the candidates for that office. If on the second ballot no candidate receives thirty percent or more of the votes cast, the two candidates receiving the highest number of votes must be certified as candidates for that office by the assembly. The certificate of designation by assembly must state the name of the office for which each person is a candidate and the candidate’s name and address, must designate in not more than three words the name of the political party which the candidate represents, and must certify that the candidate has been a member of the political party for the period of time required by party rule or by subsection (4) of this section if the party has no such rule. The candidate’s affiliation, as shown in the statewide voter registration system, is prima facie evidence of political party membership. The certificate of designation must indicate the order of the vote received at the assembly by candidates for each office, but no assembly shall declare that any one candidate has received the nomination of the assembly. The certificate of designation must be filed in accordance with section 1-4-604. If two or more candidates receiving designation under this subsection (2) have received an equal number of votes, the order of certification of designation is determined by lot by the candidates. The assembly shall select a vacancy committee for vacancies in designation or nomination only.
(b)(I) Notwithstanding any requirement in subsection (2)(a) of this section to the contrary, due to public health concerns, in any assembly held in 2020:
(A) A delegate may participate in the assembly remotely, including casting his or her vote by e-mail, mail, telephone, or through an internet-based application if allowed by the party;
(B) A person who is physically present may carry up to five proxies, if proxies are allowed by the party; and
(C) If the party has a requirement for a quorum, the state party may provide procedures to authorize the reduction or waiver of the quorum requirement in order to allow the assembly to proceed.
(II) This subsection (2)(b) is repealed, effective December 31, 2020.
(3)(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this subsection (3), no later than four days after the adjournment of the assembly, each candidate designated by assembly shall file a written acceptance with the officer with whom the certificate of designation is filed. This acceptance may be transmitted by facsimile transmission. If the acceptance is transmitted by facsimile transmission, the original acceptance must also be filed and postmarked no later than ten days after the adjournment of the assembly. The acceptance shall state the candidate’s name in the form in which it is to appear on the ballot.
The name may include one nickname, if the candidate regularly uses the nickname and the nickname does not include any part of a political party name. If an acceptance is not filed within the specified time, the candidate shall be deemed to have declined the designation; except that the candidate shall not be deemed to have declined the designation and shall be included on the primary ballot if late filing of an acceptance is caused by the failure to timely file a certificate of designation or the failure to file such acceptance with such certificate of designation, as required by section 1-4-604(1)(a).
(b) The written acceptance of a candidate nominated by assembly for any national or state office or for member of the general assembly, district attorney, or district office greater than a county office shall be filed by the presiding officer or secretary of such assembly with the certificate of designation of such assembly, as required by section 1-4-604(1)(a). Nothing in this paragraph (b) shall prohibit a candidate from filing an acceptance of nomination directly with the officer with whom the certificate of designation is filed following written notice of such filing by the candidate to the presiding officer of the political party holding such assembly.
(4)(a) No person is eligible for designation by assembly as a candidate for nomination at any primary election unless the person was affiliated with the political party holding the assembly, as shown in the statewide voter registration system, no later than the first business day of the January immediately preceding the primary election, unless otherwise provided by party rules.
(b) Repealed by Laws 1989, S.B.97, § 3, eff. April 12, 1989.
(5) As used in this section, “political party” means a major political party as defined in section 1-1-104(22).
Source: L. 80: Entire article R&RE, p. 326, § 1, effective January 1, 1981. L. 81: (1) and (3) amended, p. 310, § 1, effective March 27. L. 83: (2) amended, p. 352, § 16, effective July 1. L. 87: (2) amended, p. 286, § 8, effective June 26. L. 88: (4) amended, p. 294, § 3, effective May 29. L. 89: (4)(b) repealed, p. 314, § 3, effective April 12; (1) and (2) amended, p. 302, § 7, effective May 9. L. 92: Entire part amended, p. 678, § 6, effective January 1, 1993. L. 94: (4)(a) amended,p. 1153, § 13, effective July 1. L. 98: (5) added, p. 257, § 7, effective April 13. L. 99: (3) amended, p. 285, § 1, effective April 13; (1) and (3) amended, p. 762, § 20, effective May 20; (2) amended, p. 160, § 9, effective August 4. L. 2005: (1) amended, p. 1398, § 14, effective June 6; (1) amended, p. 1433, § 14, effective June 6. L. 2010: (2) and (4)(a) amended, (HB 10-1271), ch. 324, p. 1502, § 3, effective May 27. L. 2011: (1) amended, (SB 11-189), ch. 243, p. 1063, § 7, effective May 27. L. 2012: (3)(a) amended, (HB 12-1292), ch. 181, p. 679, § 11, effective May 17. L. 2016: (2) and (4)(a) amended, (SB 16-142), ch. 173, p. 575, § 28, effective May 18. L. 2020: 1(a), 1(b), 2(b) amended, (HB 20-1359), ch. 23, § 3, effective March, 16.
Editor’s note: (1) This section is similar to former § 1-14-204 as it existed prior to 1980.(2) Amendments to subsection (3) by Senate Bill 99-025 and House Bill 99-1225 were harmonized.
Cross references: For the definition of assembly, see § 1-1-104 (1.3); for designation of candidates by petition, see § 1-4-603.
Cross references: For school elections, see articles 30, 31, and 42 of title 22; for elections for removal of county seats, see article 8 of title 30; for municipal elections, see article 10 of title 31; for special district elections, see part 8 of article 1 of title 32; for exemption of certain statutory proceedings from the rules of civil procedure, see C.R.C.P. 81; for recall from office, see article XXI of the state constitution; for recall of state and county officers, see part 1 of article 12 of this title; for recall of municipal officers, see part 5 of article 4 of title 31; for recall of directors of special districts, see § § 32-1-906, 32-1-907.
Editor’s note: Articles 1 to 13 were repealed and reenacted in 1980. This article was numbered as articles 10 and 11 of chapter 49, C.R.S. 1963. For additional historical information concerning the repeal and reenactment of articles 1 to 13 of this title in 1980, see the editor’s note immediately following the title heading for this title.
Cross references: For election offenses relating to access to ballot by candidates, see part 4 of article 13 of this title.
I. General Consideration.
II. Certification of Candidate’s Designation.
III. Twelve-Month Affiliation Requirement.
I. GENERAL CONSIDERATION.
Annotator’s note. The following annotations include cases decided under former provisions similar to this section.
Applied in Carstens v. Lamm, 543 F. Supp. 68 (D. Colo. 1982).
II.CERTIFICATION OF CANDIDATE’S DESIGNATION.
Holding that they must also certify that the candidate has been registered with the political party for the required time. Murphey v. Trott, 160 Colo. 336, 417 P.2d 234 (1966).
III.TWELVE-MONTH AFFILIATION REQUIREMENT.
Holding that in order to have been an eligible candidate for designation a person must have been “affiliated with” that particular political party for the 12 months immediately preceding the date of the assembly. Murphey v. Trott, 160 Colo. 336, 417 P.2d 234 (1966).
Holding that in order to have been affiliated with a political party for the 12 months immediately preceding the assembly of that party, the petitioner for a party candidacy must have filed in the new county to which he had moved the certificate proving his prior affiliation at the time he registered in the new county. Murphey v. Trott, 160 Colo. 336, 417 P.2d 234 (1966).
Holding that affiliation provisions are mandatory. Unless a person comes under the affiliation provisions, he may not be designated as a party candidate even though he may have been mistakenly designated by a county assembly as a primary nominee and even though he may have been selected by the voters at the primary election to be the party candidate. Ray v. Mickelson, 196 Colo. 325, 584 P.2d 1215 (1978).
Holding that the provisions for designation of candidates by assembly by petition require registration of a person on the books of the county clerk and recorder as a member of a particular political party as a condition of eligibility for designation as a candidate of that party for public office. Anderson v. Kilmer, 134 Colo. 270, 302 P.2d 185 (1956).
Holding that a candidate is not eligible if he does not meet this requirement. Under the provisions for designation of candidates by assembly and by petition, a person who has not been registered as a member of the political party under which he seeks designation for public office, for a period of one year prior to the date of the party assembly, is not eligible for designation as a candidate. Anderson v. Kilmer, 134 Colo. 270, 302 P.2d 185 (1956).
Holding that the clerk’s record must itself indicate the affiliation of the person with the political party for at least one year prior to the date of the assembly. Spain v. Fischahs, 143 Colo. 464, 354 P.2d 502 (1960).
Holding that the record of the clerk and recorder cannot be supplemented or enlarged in any way by parol evidence. Spain v. Fischahs, 143 Colo. 464, 354 P.2d 502 (1960).
- Ballot Access
- Candidate Methods of Nomination
1. Definition for Political party
Any group of registered electors who, by petition or assembly, nominate candidates for the official general election ballot. “Political party” includes affiliated party organizations at the state, county, and election district levels, and all such affiliates are considered to be a single entity for the purposes of this article, except as otherwise provided in section 7. Section 2(13) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.
2. Definition for State
A state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.
3. Definition for Title
A brief statement that fairly and accurately represents the true intent and meaning of the proposed text of the initiative.
4. Definition for Ballot
(a) A federal write-in absentee ballot;
(b) A ballot specifically prepared or distributed for use by a covered voter in accordance with this article; or
(c) A ballot cast by a covered voter in accordance with this article.
(2) “Covered voter” means:
(a) A uniformed-service voter defined in paragraph (a) of subsection (9) of this section who is a resident of this state but who is absent from this state by reason of active duty and who otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;
(b) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, was last eligible to vote in this state and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;
(c) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, would have been last eligible to vote in this state had the voter then been of voting age and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements; or
(d) An overseas voter who was born outside the United States, is not described in paragraph (b) or (c) of this subsection (2), and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements if the last place where a parent, legal guardian, spouse, or civil union partner of the voter was, or under this article would have been, eligible to vote before leaving the United States is within this state.
C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.
5. Definition for Person
Any natural person, partnership, committee, association, corporation, labor organization, political party, or other organization or group of persons. Section 2(11) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.
6. Definition for Section
A bound compilation of initiative forms approved by the secretary of state, which shall include pages that contain the warning required by section 1-40-110 (1), the ballot title, the abstract required by section 1-40-110 (3), and a copy of the proposed measure; succeeding pages that contain the warning, the ballot title, and ruled lines numbered consecutively for registered electors’ signatures; and a final page that contains the affidavit required by section 1-40-111 (2). Each section shall be consecutively prenumbered by the petitioner prior to circulation.
7. Definition for Election
Any election under the “Uniform Election Code of 1992” or the “Colorado Municipal Election Code of 1965”, article 10 of title 31, C.R.S. C.R.S. § 1-7.5-103.
8. Definition for Secretary
The Colorado secretary of state. C.R.S. § 1-1.5-102.
9. Definition for Committee
The committee of signers described in section 1-12-108(2). C.R.S. § 1-12-100.5.
10. Definition for Candidate
Any person who seeks nomination or election to any state or local public office that is to be voted on in this state at any primary election, general election, school district election, special district election, or municipal election. “Candidate” also includes a judge or justice of any court of record who seeks to be retained in office pursuant to the provisions of section 25 of article VI. A person is a candidate for election if the person has publicly announced an intention to seek election to public office or retention of a judicial office and thereafter has received a contribution or made an expenditure in support of the candidacy. A person remains a candidate for purposes of this article so long as the candidate maintains a registered candidate committee. A person who maintains a candidate committee after an election cycle, but who has not publicly announced an intention to seek election to public office in the next or any subsequent election cycle, is a candidate for purposes of this article. Section 2(2) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.
Case Name: Murphey v. Trott
Citation: 417 P.2d 234
Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/8f93c3584bf33b964fee310660b33fac
Case Summary: Holding that petitioner had not preserved former party affiliation when he failed to register certificate of registered party affilliation from his former county of residence at time of registration in new county; required twelve months' party affiliation commenced in new county from time he first declared his party affiliation in new county; and petitioner did not meet statutory requirement as party designee for nomination to public office.
Case Name: Ray v. Mickelson
Citation: 584 P.2d 1215, 196 Colo. 325 (1978)
Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/5085a3214f9ade5f800fddf5238f85d4
Case Summary: Holding that a candidate could not represent a political party if not a member of the party for at least 12 months immediately preceding the election. Not important that county assembly mistakenly designated candidate as the primary nominee, party voters properly nominated the candidate, and the contestor improperly filed the complaint. Lastly, the trial court acted within its discretion to permit the contestor to supply additional evidence demonstrating a right to bring the contest.
Case Name: Anderson v. Kilmer
Citation: 302 P.2d 185 (1956)
Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/07dadc684de4792f787f71ef5b143044
Case Summary: Holding that where candidate was first registered as a Republican in the books of the county clerk on April 29, 1956, and primary election was held September 11, 1956, such individual was ineligible for designation as a candidate.
Case Name: Spain v. Fischahs
Citation: 354 P.2d 502 (Colo. 1960)
Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/89aba28b498ed356c840f21131789a20
Case Summary: Holding that county clerk's record must itself indicate the affiliation with a political party of a person seeking nomination as a candidate of that party for at least one year prior to date of the assembly of the political party at which candidates are designated as nominees, and that record cannot be supplemented by parol evidence.
Case Name: Colo. Libertarian Party v. Sec’y of State
Citation: 817 P.2d 998 (Colo. 1991)
Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/315f350a104329b170e58e6ce31ff9ad
Case Summary: Holding that the unaffiliation requirement did not violate the right of political association or right to equal protection. A gubernatorial candidate, and the Libertarian party, challenged the constitutionality of the provision after the candidate was denied ballot access due to his party affiliation with the Republican party.
Case Name: National Prohibition Party v. State
Citation: 752 P.2d 80 (Colo. 1988)
Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/6dc9b92cdc0e841cfa3a8414a2b8f5e2
Case Summary: Holding that election statute requiring each candidate of political organization, rather than political party, to circulate a single petition, satisfied constitutional requirements of equal protection and right of association.
Case Name: Carstens v. Lamm
Citation: 543 F. Supp. 68 (D. Colo. 1982)
Federal District Court: District of Colorado
Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/6f119a74bd4befea9222a4d31dcefcca
Case Summary: Holding that the current congressional redistricting plan was unconstitutional and, because none of the plans submitted to the Court fully comported with the appropriate objectives and criteria, the court must fashion its own plan to satisfy the legal criteria and incorporate the most desirable aspects of the plans submitted to the Court.
Case Name: Thournir v. Meyer
Citation: 708 F. Supp. 1183 (D. Colo. 1989)
Federal District Court: District of Colorado
Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/6dc9b92cdc0e841cfa3a8414a2b8f5e2
Case Summary: Holding that state statute requiring that person seeking to run for public office as an unaffiliated candidate be registered in the state as an unaffiliated voter for at least one year prior to filing nominating petition does not discriminate unfairly against independent candidates.
State Constitutional Provisions
Coroners, qualifications and fingerprints, see § 30-10-601.5.
County sheriffs, qualifications, fingerprints, see § 30-10-501.5.