The Republican Party of Texas and Texas Democratic Party submitted a proposed order this evening addressing changes to the election schedule needed to accommodate a May 29 primary. The court will likely approve this new schedule in a court order.
Under the parties’ proposal:
•The filing period would reopen Friday, March 2, and close a week later on Friday, March 9 at 6 p.m.
•Ballot order draws would need to occur in each county on or before March 12, 2012.
•Precinct boundaries would need to be redrawn by or before March 20, 2012.
•Military and overseas mail ballots would need to be mailed by April 14, 2012.
•New voter registration certificates would need to be issued by April 25, 2012.
•The primary runoff would be July 31, 2012.
The parties did not agree on residency requirements for state house and state senate. The RPT proposes requiring residency to be established by the March 9 filing deadline. The TDP proposes only that candidates live in a district by the time they take the oath of office in January, arguing that it would be “inequitable to require people who only learned of districts yesterday to move in the next two weeks.”
The parties also disagreed on precinct chair elections, with the Republican party and election administrators preferring precinct chair elections take place on July 31 with the runoff and only a plurality vote required for election. The Democratic party prefers that precinct chair elections take place on May 29, saying that they did not anticipate a statewide runoff election.
The order also addressed independent candidates by changing the deadline for such candidates to file applications for a spot on the ballot to June 29, 2012 and waiving provisions of the Texas Election Code that invalidated signatures collected for independent candidates if they were collected before the date of the Texas primary.
The proposed order can be found here.