California Proposition 62, "Modified Blanket" Primaries Act (2004)
Proposition 62, if it had been enacted, would have provided for a "modified blanket" primary election system like that used in the state of Louisiana. Instead of traditional partisan primaries for statewide offices, voters would have been allowed to vote for any candidate in a primary election regardless of the political afflilation of the voter or candidates. The two candidates with the most votes (regardless of party or lack thereof) would later appear on the general election ballot.
Proposition 62 was on the same ballot as Proposition 60, which won. The two propositions had conflicting provisions. If both had passed, the one with the most votes would have taken precedence.
Proposition 62 would have affected elections for the following offices:
- Lieutenant Governor
- California Attorney General
- Insurance Commissioner,
- Secretary of State
- Member of the State Legislature
- Member of the Board of Equalization
It also would have affected federal politicians elected from California, except for presidential nominations.
Proposition 60 conflict
The provisions of Proposition 62 conflicted with those of Proposition 60, which essentially re-affirmed the existing partisan primary system. The California Constitution provides that if the provisions of two approved propositions are in conflict, only the provisions of the measure with the higher number of "yes" votes at the statewide election take effect. (Since Proposition 60 passed and 62 did not, the issue was moot.)
The "Yes on 62" campaign spent about $9,000, while the "No on 62" committee raised and spent $498,589.
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Text of measure
The ballot title was:
The question on the ballot was:
- "Should primary elections be structured so that voters may vote for any state or federal candidate regardless of party registration of voter or candidate? The two primary-election candidates receiving most votes for an office, whether they are candidates with "no party" or members of same or different party, would be listed on general election ballot. Exempts presidential nominations."
- Requires primary elections where all voters may vote for any state or federal candidate regardless of how a voter or candidate is registered.
- Exempts presidential nominations and elections of party central committees.
- Only the two primary-election candidates receiving most votes for an office, whether they are candidates with "no party" or members of same or different party, would be listed on general election ballot.
- In special primary election, candidate receiving majority vote is elected.
- Requires political party's consent for identification of candidates' party registration on ballot and in other official election publications.
- See also: Fiscal impact statement
The California Legislative Analyst's Office provided an estimate of net state and local government fiscal impact for Proposition 62. That estimate was:
- No significant net fiscal effect on state and local governments.
- Official Voter Information Guide with text of Proposition 62
- LAO analysis of Proposition 62
- November 2004 election results from the California Secretary of State
- Guide to Proposition 62 from the California Voter Foundation
- Analysis of Proposition 62 from the Institute of Governmental Studies
- Archived copy of the "No on 62" website
- Archived copy of the "Yes on 62" website
- PDF of the mailed November 2, 2004 voter guide for Propositions 59, 60, 60A, 61-64, 66-72