2017 Wisconsin Statutes & Annotations
Chapter 5. Elections — general provisions; ballots and voting systems.
5.62 Partisan primary ballots.

Universal Citation: WI Stat § 5.62 (2017)

5.62 Partisan primary ballots.

(1)

(a) At the partisan primary, the following ballot shall be provided for the nomination of candidates of recognized political parties for national, state and county offices and independent candidates for state office in each ward, in the same form as prescribed by the commission under s. 7.08 (1) (a), except as authorized in s. 5.655. The ballots shall be made up of the several party tickets with each party entitled to participate in the primary under par. (b) or sub. (2) having its own ballot, except as authorized in s. 5.655. The ballots shall be secured together at the bottom. The party ballot of the party receiving the most votes for president or governor at the last general election shall be on top with the other parties arranged in descending order based on their vote for president or governor at the last general election. The ballots of parties qualifying under sub. (2) shall be placed after the parties qualifying under par. (b), in the same order in which the parties filed petitions with the commission. Any ballot required under par. (b) 2. shall be placed next in order. At polling places where voting machines are used, each party shall be represented in one or more separate columns or rows on the ballot. At polling places where an electronic voting system is used other than an electronic voting machine, each party may be represented in separate columns or rows on the ballot.

(b)

1. Except as provided in subd. 2. and s. 5.64 (1) (e) 2., every recognized political party listed on the official ballot at the last gubernatorial election whose candidate for any statewide office received at least 1 percent of the total votes cast for that office and, if the last general election was also a presidential election, every recognized political party listed on the ballot at that election whose candidate for president received at least 1 percent of the total vote cast for that office shall have a separate primary ballot or one or more separate columns or rows on the primary ballot as prescribed in par. (a) and a separate column on the general election ballot in every ward and election district. An organization which was listed as “independent" at the last general election and whose candidate meets the same qualification shall receive the same ballot status upon petition of the chairperson and secretary of the organization to the commission requesting such status and specifying their party name, which may not duplicate the name of an existing party. A petition under this subdivision may be filed no later than 5 p.m. on April 1 in the year of each general election.

2. Subdivision 1. applies to a party within any assembly district or county at any partisan primary election only if at least one candidate of the party for any national, state or county office qualifies to have his or her name appear on the ballot under the name of that party within that assembly district or county. The county clerk or county board of election commissioners shall provide a combined separate ballot or one or more separate columns or rows on the ballot that will permit an elector to cast a vote for a write-in candidate for the nomination of any such party for each national, state and county office whenever that party qualifies to be represented on a separate primary ballot or in one or more separate columns or rows under subd. 1. but does not qualify under this subdivision. The ballot shall include the name of each party qualifying for a separate ballot or one or more separate columns or rows on the ballot under each office, with the names of the candidates for each such party appearing in the same order in which the ballots of the parties would appear under par. (a).

(2)

(a) Except as provided in par. (b) and s. 5.64 (1) (e) 2., any political organization may be represented on a separate primary ballot or in one or more separate columns or rows on the primary ballot as prescribed in sub. (1) (a) and in a separate column on the general election ballot in every ward and election district. To qualify for a separate ballot under this paragraph, the political organization shall, not later than 5 p.m. on April 1 in the year of the partisan primary, file with the commission a petition requesting separate ballot status. The petition shall be signed by at least 10,000 electors, including at least 1,000 electors residing in each of at least 3 separate congressional districts. The petition shall conform to the requirements of s. 8.40. No signature obtained before January 1 in the year of filing is valid. When the candidates of a political organization filing a valid petition fulfill the requirements prescribed by law, they shall appear on a separate ballot or one or more separate columns or rows on the ballot for the period ending with the following general election.

(b) Paragraph (a) applies to a party within any assembly district or county at any partisan primary election only if at least one candidate of the party for any national, state or county office qualifies to have his or her name appear on the ballot under the name of that party within that assembly district or county. The county clerk or county board of election commissioners shall provide a combined separate ballot or one or more separate columns or rows on the ballot that will permit an elector to cast a vote for a write-in candidate for the nomination of any such party for each national, state and county office whenever that party qualifies to be represented on a separate primary ballot or in one or more separate columns or rows under par. (a) but does not qualify under this paragraph. The ballot shall include the name of each party qualifying for a separate ballot or one or more separate columns or rows on the ballot under each office, with the names of the candidates for each such party appearing in the same order in which the ballots of the parties would appear under sub. (1) (a).

(3) The commission shall designate the official primary ballot arrangement for statewide offices and district attorney within each prosecutorial district by using the same procedure as provided in s. 5.60 (1) (b). On each ballot and on each separate column or row on the ballot, the candidates for office shall be listed together with the offices which they seek in the following order whenever these offices appear on the partisan primary ballot: governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, state treasurer, U.S. senator, U.S. representative in congress, state senator, representative to the assembly, district attorney and the county offices.

(4)

(ag) The county clerk or county board of election commissioners shall designate the official primary ballot arrangement for all candidates filing nomination papers in that office.

(ar) Within a county the county clerk shall arrange the names of all candidates filing nomination papers with the clerk's office using the same method as that used by the commission under s. 5.60 (1) (b).

(b) The county board of election commissioners in counties having a population of more than 750,000 shall prepare the official primary ballot. The commissioners shall arrange the names of all candidates for each office whose nomination papers are filed at the county level, using the same method as that used by the elections commission under s. 5.60 (1) (b).

History: 1971 c. 304 ss. 12, 29 (2); 1971 c. 336; 1973 c. 334 s. 57; 1975 c. 93; 1977 c. 107, 427; 1979 c. 260, 311, 328; 1981 c. 377; 1983 a. 484; 1985 a. 304; 1987 a. 391; 1989 a. 31, 192; 1991 a. 316; 1993 a. 184; 1999 a. 182; 2005 a. 149; 2007 a. 1; 2011 a. 32, 75; 2013 a. 166 s. 77; 2013 a. 373; 2015 a. 118 ss. 66, 266 (10).

The filing of a proper petition by the requisite number of electors in a senate, assembly, or congressional district will qualify the political organization referred to in the petition as a party entitled to a separate ballot within the specific district only for all the state, congressional, legislative, and county offices for which an elector of that district may vote. The petition may be circulated commencing after any November general election and ending on the June 1 immediately prior to the next succeeding September primary. 61 Atty. Gen. 41.

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