The deadline to register to vote in the May 16 primaries — whose ballot will feature county-judge executive, coroner and county magistrate candidates — is April 17. The primaries will even feature Republican candidates squaring off, a rarity for Trigg County.
According to County Clerk Wanda Thomas, there are 9,377 people registered to vote in Trigg County as of March 15.
Of those, 6,564 are registered as Democrats, 2,406 are registered as Republicans and 407 are register as other or independent.
Voters registered as Democrats can only vote in the Democratic primaries, just as Republicans can only vote in the Republican primaries. Independent voters cannot vote in the May primary. Sort of.
“Elections get very complicated,” Thomas said.
When the ballots were printed, there were three candidates for the District One seat on the Kentucky Supreme Court: Court of Appeals Judge Rick Johnson of Symsonia, Circuit Judge Bill Cunningham of Kuttawa and incumbent Justice Bill Graves.
The May primary was to constrict the pool to two candidates, and as a non-partisan race, it was open to independents.
After the ballots were printed, however, Justice Graves bowed out, citing the time and fundraising he said he’d require to beat frontrunner Johnson. Graves had previously pledged to not take any campaign contributions.
Thomas said, however, that the State Board of Elections told her to instruct voters to go ahead and vote in the moot primary as opposed to explaining the surrounding circumstances.
So, to recap, independent voters can vote in the Supreme Court primary — the votes just won’t be counted. “You’re wasting your time,” Thomas said.
For the rest of this story, please see this week's edition of The Cadiz Record.