Article 7

Suffrage and Elections

Section 1.  Qualifications of elector. Every citizen of the United States who has attained the age of eighteen years, has resided in this state not less than one year next preceding the election at which he offers to vote and in the county, city, town, ward, or precinct such time as may be prescribed by law, and has been duly registered as a voter if required by law shall be qualified to vote at all elections; except that the general assembly may by law extend to citizens of the United States who have resided in this state less than one year the right to vote for presidential and vice­presidential electors.

As amended November 4, 1902; November 6, 1962. (See Laws 1901, p. 107; Laws 1963, p. 1057.); as amended November 8, 1988 ­­ Effective upon proclamation of the Governor, January 3, 1989. (For the text of this amendment and the votes cast thereon, see L. 88, p. 1453, and L. 89, p. 1656.)

Section 1a.  Qualifications of elector ­ residence on federal land. Any other provision of this constitution with regard to "qualifications of electors" notwithstanding, every citizen of the United States who shall be otherwise qualified and shall have resided in this state not less than three months next preceding the election at which he offers to vote, and in the county or precinct such time as may be prescribed by law, shall be qualified to vote at all elections; provided, that the general assembly may by law extend to citizens of the United States who have resided in this state less than three months, the right to vote for presidential and vice­presidential electors, United States senators, and United States representatives.

Any person who otherwise meets the requirements of law for voting in this state shall not be denied the right to vote in an election because of residence on land situated within this state that is under the jurisdiction of the United States.

Adopted November 3, 1970 ­­ Effective upon proclamation by the Governor, December 7, 1970. (See Laws 1970, p. 446.)

Section 2.  Suffrage to women.

Repealed November 8, 1988 ­­ Effective upon proclamation of the Governor, January 3, 1989. (For the text of this repeal and the votes cast thereon, see L. 88, p. 1454, and L. 89, p. 1657.)

Section 3.  Educational qualifications of elector.

(Deleted by amendment.)

As amended November 6, 1990 ­­ Effective upon proclamation of the Governor, January 3, 1991. (For the text of this amendment and the votes cast thereon, see L. 90, p. 1861, and L. 91, p. 2032.)

Section 4.  When residence does not change. For the purpose of voting and eligibility to office, no person shall be deemed to have gained a residence by reason of his presence, or lost it by reason of his absence, while in the civil or military service of the state, or of the United States, nor while a student at any institution of learning, nor while kept at public expense in any poorhouse or other asylum, nor while confined in public prison.

Section 5.  Privilege of voters. Voters shall in all cases, except treason, felony or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at elections, and in going to and returning therefrom.

Section 6.  Electors only eligible to office. No person except a qualified elector shall be elected or appointed to any civil or military office in the state.

Section 7. General election. The general election shall be held on such day as may be prescribed by law.

As amended November 3, 1992 ­­ Effective upon proclamation of the Governor, January 14, 1993. (For the text of the amendments and the votes cast thereon, see L. 92, p. 2316 and L. 93, p. 2159.)

Section 8.  Elections by ballot or voting machine. All elections by the people shall be by ballot, and in case paper ballots are required to be used, no ballots shall be marked in any way whereby the ballot can be identified as the ballot of the person casting it. The election officers shall be sworn or affirmed not to inquire or disclose how any elector shall have voted. In all cases of contested election in which paper ballots are required to be used, the ballots cast may be counted and compared with the list of voters, and examined under such safeguards and regulations as may be provided by law. Nothing in this section, however, shall be construed to prevent the use of any machine or mechanical contrivance for the purpose of receiving and registering the votes cast at any election, provided that secrecy in voting is preserved.

When the governing body of any county, city, city and county or town, including the city and county of Denver, and any city, city and county or town which may be governed by the provisions of special charter, shall adopt and purchase a voting machine, or voting machines, such governing body may provide for the payment therefor by the issuance of interest­bearing bonds, certificates of indebtedness or other obligations, which shall be a charge upon such city, city and county, or town; such bonds, certificates or other obligations may be made payable at such time or times, not exceeding ten years from date of issue, as may be determined, but shall not be issued or sold at less than par.

As amended November 5, 1946. (See Laws 1947, p. 427.)

Section 9.  No privilege to witness in election trial. In trials of contested elections, and for offenses arising under the election law, no person shall be permitted to withhold his testimony on the ground that it may criminate himself, or subject him to public infamy; but such testimony shall not be used against him in any judicial proceeding, except for perjury in giving such testimony.

Section 10.  Disfranchisement during imprisonment. No person while confined in any public prison shall be entitled to vote; but every such person who was a qualified elector prior to such imprisonment, and who is released therefrom by virtue of a pardon, or by virtue of having served out his full term of imprisonment, shall without further action, be invested with all the rights of citizenship, except as otherwise provided in this constitution.

Section 11.  Purity of elections. The general assembly shall pass laws to secure the purity of elections, and guard against abuses of the elective franchise.

Section 12.  Election contests ­ by whom tried. The general assembly shall, by general law, designate the courts and judges by whom the several classes of election contests, not herein provided for, shall be tried, and regulate the manner of trial, and all matters incident thereto, but no such law shall apply to any contest arising out of an election held before its passage.

 


Please send comments to Independence Institute, 14142 Denver West Pkwy., suite 185, Golden, CO 80401 Phone 303-279-6536 (fax) 303-279-4176 (email)webmngr@i2i.org