Former candidate for governor pushing open primaries

Former candidate for governor pushing open primaries

HARTFORD (AP) — A former gubernatorial candidate who ran as an independent in 2018 has called on Connecticut’s Democratic and Republican leaders to allow unaffiliated voters to participate in their party primaries.

Oz Griebel sent letters on Friday to the chairs of the GOP and Democratic parties, urging them and their party members “to take the actions necessary to enable all unaffiliated voters to participate in the presidential primary of their choice.”

Both party chairs have expressed resistance to the idea, suggesting people should instead register with a party if they want to vote in the primary.

Griebel has been working with SAM or Serve America Movement, a national group that advocates for election reforms, such as open primaries in Connecticut. Griebel is the SAM-CT Task Force chair and has been meeting with groups around the state since October.

Griebel, who has run for governor as both an independent and Republican candidate, noted how Connecticut’s nearly 1 million registered unaffiliated voters have a stake in the party primaries.

“The primaries of both major parties are currently open only to voters registered in the parties even though the primaries are funded by all Connecticut taxpayers and not merely by those who are registered in the Democratic and Republican primaries,” he said.