A quarter-million ballots will be dropped in the mail starting today in Spokane County, giving voters a chance to whittle down a long list of candidates for federal, state and local offices in the Aug. 19 primary.
This primary ballot will be different from those in past years. The state is holding its first top-two primary, which allows voters to select a candidate from any party in each race.
It is similar in some respects to the state’s old blanket primary, which was ruled unconstitutional several years ago. Now, the top two vote-getters in each race move on to the general election, regardless of party. That means a general election could feature two Democrats or two Republicans running against each other.
For some nonpartisan races, such as the judicial races and the state schools superintendent, the primary could be the main election. Ballots can be mailed in, and must be postmarked by Aug. 19. They can also be dropped off, without postage, at boxes at public libraries, the STA Plaza downtown and the County Elections Office, 1033 W. Gardner Ave., by 8 that night.
Kootenai County held its primary in May.