The Utah Democratic Party held their state convention on Saturday and delegates have chosen to become a qualified political party.
A qualified political party is a new designation created by SB54 that allows political parties to keep the caucus and convention system, but also requires them to allow candidates to gain access to a primary election if they gain a certain amount of signatures. While those changes managed to pass without any debate, Democratic delegates defeated an effort to increase the percentage of votes a candidate has to get at convention to avoid a primary. State Party Chair Peter Corroon says he would have liked to see a change that meant more races go to a primary.
“I want to see Utahns get out to vote as a whole," he says. "And so anything that makes it easier for them to get out and vote and feel like the system isn’t fixed or that they have no choices, I think that’s a good thing.”
Nanette Ahlstrom one was of the many delegates that voted to keep the threshold at 60%, thus reducing the number of races that go to a primary.
“It causes division and when we really need to get together as a party and get behind one person and put all our resources behind somebody to make, have an impact in the state,” she says.
Delegates also re-elected Corroon as state party chair and Breanne Miller as vice-chair. Corroon ran uncontested.