Secretary of state reminds election officials to watch for cross-party voting

With the political party runoffs on Tuesday, the Arkansas Secretary of State’s Office has sent out a notice to county clerks and election officials across the state reminding them that crossover voting is illegal.

On Tuesday, Democratic Party voters will decide between Ken Ferguson and Win Trafford for District 16 of the Arkansas House of Representatives, while Republican Party voters will choose between attorney general candidates Leslie Rutledge and Davids Sterling.

A person who voted in the Democratic Party primary during the recent election can not vote in the Republican Party runoff and vice-versa.

According to the notice, it is a misdemeanor for voters to vote in the primary of one party and the runoff of another, and for poll workers to “knowingly permit” a person to vote “other than his or her legal ballot” or permit a person to vote fraudulently.

People who did not vote in the primary or who voted only in the nonpartisan judicial general election can vote in either party’s runoff.

The notice said that if there are questions as to which party ballot should be given to a prospective voter, they should be offered a provisional ballot.

“No voter should ever be turned away from the polls without at least being offered at least a provisional ballot,” according to the notice.

Early voting will run Monday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Jefferson County Courthouse, and the polls will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday at the normal voting sites.