Oklahoma an outlier with straight-party ballots
A state Senator wants to eliminate straight-party voting in Oklahoma, which is just one of nine states to allow the practice.
Sen. J.J. Dossett, D-Owasso, has filed Senate Bill 51 ahead of the 2019 legislative session that would require Oklahomans to vote on each race, rather than simply check a box for all Republicans or all Democrats.
“I think it is unnecessary to have the straight-party option,” Dossett said in 2016, when he also filed a bill to eliminate straight-party ballots. “I think it is something that might have had value in the past when people couldn't inform themselves on the candidate and vote.”
Over the past three elections, more than one-third of all Oklahoma voters cast straight-party ballots, according to the Tulsa World's Ginnie Graham.
The only other states that have straight-party ballots are Alabama, Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas and Utah, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Both Texas and Indiana have already passed laws to eliminate straight-party voting.