GOP launches online voting for this year’s presidential caucus

Posted at 5:57 PM, Mar 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-22 18:33:34-04

SALT LAKE CITY - It's a resource that's changing the political game here in Utah.

On Tuesday, online caucus voting will become available in the state for the first time, but only for registered Republicans.

"We looked into online voting, but the price quotes were just too high," said Yandary Zavala with the Utah Democratic Party.

"This year (the Legislature) decided not to fund the presidential primary and normally the state will fund the election," Zavala added. "Unfortunately, it's not an official state-run election and employers do not have to let their employees time to vote tomorrow."

Zavala said that makes it even tougher for voters to caucus Tuesday without having online voting as an option.

Republican Party Chairman James Evans estimates the addition of online voting will bring in thousands of voters.

"With this tool, we are probably getting 25,000 more people to participate for caucus than we otherwise would have," he said.

The GOP estimates 60,000 Utahns, or roughly 10 percent of the party, registered to vote online this year.  Forty-thousand of them preregistered to vote online.

"We wanted to give the voters another option to caucus in case they couldn’t attend in person," Evans added.

The software being used for the online voting is produced by Smartmatic, an international-based company specializing in electronic voting.

Smartmatic Adviser Hugh Gallagher said registered Republicans had to register by last week's deadline in order to take part. Those who registered in time, will receive a 30-pin code via email that will be needed to login online and vote.

"The whole process will take about 30 seconds to a minute," Gallagher said of the process.

For support with online voting please call 561-862-0749.

To watch the tutorial videos on the voting process, follow the link below.