Voting in Texas: Why your primary ballot includes propositions, and what they are used for

Texas Politics

Nexstar file photo of a Travis County voting machine.

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The presidential ballot is not the only vote that Texans will cast during the Republican and Democratic primaries.

Each party’s primary includes a number of propositions, which ask for voters’ opinions on various hot-button issues.

It is important for voters to know that these are not prospective laws. The propositions are non-binding and are little more than a glorified opinion poll.

Republican voters will be asked about their feelings towards President Donald Trump’s border wall and possible restrictions to the right to keep and bear arms.

Meanwhile, Democrat voters will answer questions about Texans’ right to quality healthcare and high-quality public education including affordable college.

There are 10 propositions on the Republican ballot, and 11 on the Democratic ballot.

Answers to the questions, chosen by each party, offer guidelines to the party about what voters consider to be important.

That information can then be used to shape their future strategy.

Each party’s website offers further information about why these propositions are included in the ballot.

The Texas Republican Party website states: “Keep in mind that this is an opinion poll of Republican voters and not a policy referendum. When you vote YES or NO, you are telling us what you think should happen. You are not voting to make a law but merely saying YES you agree or NO you do not agree with the statement.”

The Texas Democratic Party website describes the propositions as the “Texas Bill of Rights.”

It says: “We’re championing a Texas Bill of Rights because Texas families deserve to shape the future of our great state. Our Texas Bill of Rights will be voted on by Texans in the Democratic primary election and will guide our party, our campaigns, and our movement in the 2020 election.”

To view a sample Republican ballot in Texas, click here.

To view a sample Democratic ballot in Texas, click here.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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