LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan voters who with a single mark can vote Democratic or Republican for every partisan office on the ballot may no longer have the option in 2016.
Republicans who control the Legislature want to make Michigan the latest state to eliminate straight-ticket, or straight-party, voting. It’s still allowed in 10 states but has been abolished by nine others in the last 20 years.
To detractors, straight-party voting encourages ill-prepared voters to pick officeholders solely on party affiliation, not their qualifications, and is a relic of party machine politics. Proponents say it’s a convenient, popular option whose removal would lengthen lines in a state with the country’s sixth-longest average wait time.
The Republican-controlled Senate has approved legislation to end the straight-ticket option, and majority House Republicans may follow suit in December.