Merced County Times Newspaper
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Update on the upcoming Presidential Primary Election

Nearly 27,000 Merced County voters are registered as No Party Preference (NPP), and their primary election ballots do not include candidates for President. Postcards were mailed in the last two weeks to permanent vote by mail voters who are currently registered as No Party Preference. The postcards, required by California Elections Code, outlined options for the No Party Preference registered voter.

Completing the postcard or voting a crossover ballot does not change a voter’s registered party affiliation. Voters who complete this postcard will continue to be registered as No Party Preference.

While all voters can vote in the March 3 Presidential Primary Election, voting for a presidential candidate is dependent on political party registration status.

If you are registered with a political party: You can vote for a candidate running for president in that party.

If you are registered “No Party Preference,” the following parties ALLOW a “No Party Preference” voter to cast a crossover vote in the Presidential Primary Election:

  • American Independent
  • Democratic
  • Libertarian

You were sent a postcard to select a party ballot. By filling out the postcard, you will receive your party preference ballot by mail for this election only and your registered party will not change.

Return the postcard to the Elections office as soon as possible. You can also select the party ballot at the Registrar of Voters Office or at any Voting Assistance Center in Merced County. All requests for new ballots to be mailed must be received no later than Feb. 25.

The following parties do NOT ALLOW a “No Party Preference” voter to cast a crossover vote in the Presidential Primary Election:

  • Green
  • Peace & Freedom
  • Republican

If you want to participate in the Presidential Primary Election for these parties you must re-register in that party. Registration deadline is Feb. 17. After that date, voters can still re-register but they will cast a Conditional Ballot requiring review prior to being counted.

If you believe that you received the postcard in error – please contact the Elections office or verify your registration by visiting the Elections website.

For more information, contact the Registrar of Voters’ Office at (209) 385-7541, or visit

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