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Kansas kicks off in-person advance voting for 2024 presidential preference primary

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Kansas kicks off in-person advance voting for 2024 presidential preference primary

Feb 28, 2024 | 1:05 pm ET
By Tim Carpenter
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Kansas kicks off in-person advance voting for 2024 presidential preference primary
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Kansas Secretary of State Scott Schwab, a Republican, said advance in-person voting in the Kansas presidential preference primary would run from Wednesday through March 18. The actual primary day is March 19. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

TOPEKA — Secretary of State Scott Schwab said in-person advance voting would run from Wednesday through March 18 for Kansans interested in leaving their mark on the state’s Republican and Democratic presidential preference primaries.

The frontrunner in the respective contests were President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump, who were the preference of Kansans in 2020. In those contests, the Kansas Republican Party nominated Trump at a convention after calling off the statewide primary. Biden was the choice of Democrats in 2020 by virtue of a mail-in primary.

They won’t be alone on the 2024 ballot in Kansas. Three candidates in both political parties secured a place on ballots.

“This is the first of three big elections that Kansas voters will participate in this year,” Schwab said. “Even though there is only one race on each party’s ballot, I encourage all registered voters to make their preference known in this important race.”

Schwab said Kansas voters should contact county election offices to learn dates, times and locations for advance in-person voting within the resident’s county.

All in-person advance voting for the Kansas presidential primary must be done by noon March 18. The primary election day is Tuesday, March 19.

Kansas ballots for Republican primary voters would list Trump along with Nikki Haley of South Carolina, Ron DeSantis of Florida and Ryan Binkley of Texas. Haley, a former United Nations ambassador and governor, remained in the GOP campaign. DeSantis and Binkley suspended their campaigns.

On the Democratic side, Biden would be joined by Jason Palmer of Maryland, Dean Phillips of Minnesota and Marianne Williamson of California. Williamson, a self-help author who had suspended her campaign, reversed course Wednesday after declaring Biden couldn’t defeat Trump. She also referred to Trump as the conductor of a “juggernaut of dark, dark vision.”

The statewide primary election is set for August and the general election scheduled for November.

The major political parties in Kansas responsible for organizing primaries concluded both would be “closed” events. That meant Republicans were eligible to vote in the GOP primary and Democrats in that party’s primary. Unaffiliated voters may participate in either by declaring a party affiliation at their polling location.

The Kansas deadline to register to vote in the March presidential primary or to request an advance ballot by mail was Feb. 20.

The Kansas Legislature earmarked up to $5 million for the presidential preference primary. Passage of that bill, signed by Gov. Laura Kelly, illustrated the trust state political party leaders had in integrity of Kansas elections, Schwab said.

This was structured as a one-time primary, meaning the Legislature would need to approve a separate bill to repeat this primary process in 2028.