The purpose of this title is to assure the people’s right to free and equal elections, as guaranteed by our state Constitution. To that end, the full exercise of that right demands that the people be afforded the means to form political parties, nominate candidates and cast ballots for whomever they choose. At the same time, however, lengthy ballots which list a profusion of political parties and unaffiliated candidates, many of which are not serious contenders and lack even a modicum of community support, tend to create voter confusion and to clog the election machinery.
Terms Used In Delaware Code Title 15 Sec. 101A
- Ballot: means those portions of cardboard, paper or other material to be placed within the ballot frames of a voting machine or to be used for absentee voting in order to list the names of the offices to be voted for, the name of each candidate and the designation of the party by which the candidate is nominated, a space for the voter to write in the name of any candidate of that voter's choice for any office, and the statement of any question submitted with provision for a "yes" or "no" vote. See Delaware Code Title 15 Sec. 101
- political party: means any political organization which elects a state committee and officers of a state committee, by a state convention composed of delegates elected from each representative district in which the party has registered members, and which nominates candidates for electors of President and Vice-President, or nominates candidates for offices to be decided at the general election. See Delaware Code Title 15 Sec. 101
- Primary election: means an election at which voters registered as members of a major political party may vote to determine the nominees of that political party for the general election. See Delaware Code Title 15 Sec. 101
- State: means the State of Delaware; and when applied to different parts of the United States, it includes the District of Columbia and the several territories and possessions of the United States. See Delaware Code Title 6 Sec. 4307
To secure the right to free and equal elections and to preserve the integrity of the democratic political process, it is essential that an orderly system be established:
(1) For the registration of voters and the preservation of voter registration records;
(2) To encourage public participation in political parties and to demonstrate sufficient community support of these parties by permitting voters to affiliate with the party of their choice, if they so desire, on their voter registration records;
(3) To provide a means by which political parties and unaffiliated candidates, which have demonstrated a meaningful level of community support, may qualify for listing on the general election ballot;
(4) For the orderly and fair selection of party nominees by primary election or political party convention, and for the filling of vacancies among such nominees;
(5) To provide for the free exercise of the write-in vote for both politically affiliated and unaffiliated candidates who may not qualify for listing on the general election ballot;
(6) For the conduct of primary and general elections;
(7) For the certification of election results and the resolution of election contests;
(8) To provide criminal penalties and civil liability for violation of the laws set forth in this title;
(9) To provide for all such other matters, related to the electoral process, as may be set forth herein.