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What To Know Before Voting In Idaho's Upcoming Presidential Primary

Idaho Statesman


With Super Tuesday in the rearview, it's almost Idaho's turn to weigh in on the presidential primaries. Tuesday March 10, Idaho voters will head to the polls to cast their ballot for who will represent the Democratic, Republican and Constitution Parties in the general election later this year.

In 2016, Idaho Democrats used the caucus system, which some look back on as disastrous. Now, the party is embracing a traditional primary system. 


"It was a no-brainer for us at the party to not even consider [a caucus this year]," said Idaho Democratic Party Political Director Jesse Maldonado. "It’s disenfranchising; it is not something that everybody can participate in."


Ada County Clerk Phil McGrane joined Maldonado on Idaho Matters. They shared information about how to participate in the March 10 primary: 


  • The polls will be open 8 a.m.-8 p.m. in both the Mountain and Pacific times zones. McGrane says Ada County will hold results until polls close in North Idaho. 
  • In Ada County, all 151 polling locations will be open. Here's how to find your polling place around the state. 
  • The Democratic Party is expecting a higher turnout this year than in 2016 when the caucus was in place.
  • If you want to vote in the Republican primary, you need to register with the party. That can be done at your polling place. If you want to participate in the Democratic or Constitution primares, you can either be registered with the party or unaffililated.  
  • There will be presidential candidates on your ballot who no longer are in the race. The cutoff for withdrawing officially from the Idaho ballot was in January, and there have been several Democratic candidates who have left the race since that time. 
  • When votes are cast for candidates no longer in the race, those votes will still be counted. But each candidate needs to reach a 15% threshold to be eligible for delegates in the state convention, and then again need to qualify with 15% for delegates to get sent to the Democratic National Convention in July. 

Have a question or comment for the show? Tweet @KBSX915 using #IdahoMatters

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Molly Wampler is a newsroom intern at Boise State Public Radio. Originally from Berkeley, California, she just graduated from the University of Puget Sound in Washington state. There, Molly worked for her university's newspaper but is stoked to try her hand at and learn all there is to learn about radio journalism.

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