Sunday, April 21, 2024

IOP group holds volunteer event

| March 29, 2024 1:00 AM

Volunteers for Idahoans for Open Primaries held an event at the Sandpoint branch of the East Bonner County Library this weekend at an event for local volunteers. The event was an opportunity to notarize signed petitions, hear an update for volunteers in Legislative District 1 on statewide progress, and announce a “walkathon” to collect signatures leading up to the statewide submission deadline.

“It was a fun and energizing event,” said organizer Christine Moon. “Nearly 200 new signatures were turned in!”

Luke Mayville, founder of Reclaim Idaho and a driving force behind the Idahoans for Open Primaries initiative, also spoke briefly to the assembled volunteers to give an update on the statewide status of the initiative. To date, 18 of Idaho’s legislative districts have qualified the initiative for the ballot in November individually. IOP has also collected over 76,000 total signatures statewide and aims to collect between 90,000 and 100,000 total signatures. IOP plans to actively collect signatures until April 27, slightly before the state submission deadline, to allow volunteers time to verify and notarize signature pages.

Legislative District 1 volunteers intend to finish out the signature collection phase with a big door-knocking push. At the event this weekend, organizers announced plans for a “walkathon” to reach as many voters as possible before the deadline. Legislative District 1 has qualified, but local volunteers hope to contribute to the statewide total.

"This is not about giving power to one party or another, this is about giving power to voters,” Mayville said at the end of his Zoom comments, reminding the crowd of the initiative's overall goal.

Idahoans for Open Primaries is a nonpartisan coalition of civic organizations and citizen groups supporting a ballot initiative to implement open primaries and ranked-choice general elections in Idaho. The coalition includes groups from across the political spectrum, including Reclaim Idaho, Veterans for Political Innovation, Republicans for Open Primaries, the Hope Coalition, and Mormon Women for Ethical Government. IOP is actively collecting signatures until April 27 to qualify the initiative for the Nov. 5, 2024 ballot.