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One is the Only-est Number

What to know: 

  • The Presidential Primary is March 5. All ballots must be received by 7 p.m. 

  • By law, unaffiliated voters who received a Democratic and Republican ballot may only return one voted ballot, or neither ballot will count.  

  • Ballots began mailing to voters February 12.  


Primary elections in Colorado are open to unaffiliated voters. Unfortunately, in every primary election, many unaffiliated voters invalidate their own choices by voting both major parties’ ballots and returning them. 

Unaffiliated voters receive both parties’ ballots by mail; Colorado law mandates that neither ballot can be counted if an envelope contains both parties’ voted ballots. 

“It’s frustrating because if our election judges find two voted ballots in the envelope, we have to set them aside,” Arapahoe County Clerk and Recorder Joan Lopez said. “There’s nothing we can do at that point.” 

Lopez is reminding unaffiliated voters to mark and return only one ballot in two upcoming primary elections, the March 5 Presidential Primary Election, and the June 25 State Primary Election. 

“The majority of unaffiliated voters know the drill by now, but if even one voter makes a mistake that keeps their ballot from being counted, it’s too many,” Lopez said. 

Ballots begin mailing to voters on February 12. Voters can request a replacement if their original ballot was damaged or lost by calling 303-795-4511, or emailing