ATTORNEY GENERAL OPINION
Cite as: AGO 1997 No. 8
[November 24, 1997]
political parties - elections - Interpreting of laws concerning "major
1. Whenever a general election is conducted in an even-numbered year,
any party with a candidate drawing five percent of the vote for any
partisan statewide state or federal office qualifies as a "major
party"; this designation holds until an election occurs in an even-numbered year in which one or more statewide partisan offices appear
on the ballot and the party in question fails to gain five percent
of the vote for any of its statewide candidates.
2. For a newly qualified major political party, the first election of
precinct committee officers will occur at the next general election
occurring in an even-numbered year.
3. If a party is not organized pursuant chapter 29.42 RCW, but is newly
qualified as a major political party, it may designate the governing
body or officers who will perform the functions assigned by law to
the county or state committees of a major political party.
4. The provisions of RCW 29.45.010(4) restrict membership on a three-person election board to members of the parties whose candidates
polled the greatest and the next greatest number of votes in a
5. If the county auditor appoints clerks to expand the size of a
precinct election board pursuant to RCW 29.45.020, and there are
three or more major parties, appointments should be made in such a
way as to make the total membership of the election board as nearly
equal among the parties as possible.
6. The ballot pick-up and delivery teams mentioned in RCW 29.54.037
should consist of one representative of each major political party
which designates a representative for that purpose.
The Honorable Ralph Munro
Secretary of State
120 E. Union Avenue
P.O. Box 40232
Olympia, Washington 98504-0232