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REMINDER: Crossing party lines in Primary Election is misdemeanor in Tennessee

It is a violation of Tennessee Code Annotated, Section 2-7-115(b), and punishable
as a Class C misdemeanor under Tennessee Code Annotated, Section 2-19-102, if
a person votes in a political party’s primary without being a bona fide member of or
affiliated with that political party, or to declare allegiance to that party without the
intent to affiliate with that party.

This act shall be known and may be cited as the “Tennessee Political
Party Registration Act.”

The law reads as follows:

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(b) A registered voter is entitled to vote in a primary election for offices for which
the voter is qualified to vote at the polling place where the voter is registered:
(1) If the voter is registered as being affiliated with that political party; or
(2) If the voter was registered prior to January 1, 2020, and if the primary
election is the first primary election the voter has participated in following such
date, and if the voter declares allegiance to that political party. The party
affiliation declared by the voter shall then be added to the voter’s permanent
registration record.
SECTION 5. This act shall take effect January 1, 2020, the public welfare requiring it.

Universal Citation: TN Code § 2-19-107 (2021)

  1. A person commits a Class D felony who:
    1. Intentionally and knowing that such person is not entitled to, registers or votes in any manner or attempts to register or vote in any manner where or when such person is not entitled to under this title, including voting more than once in the same election; or
    2. Votes in the primary elections of more than one (1) political party in an election.
  2. When any person is convicted of a violation of subdivision (a)(1) or (a)(2), in addition to any other punishment that may be imposed for the offense, the court shall impose a fine of one thousand dollars ($1,000). The additional fine shall be paid to the clerk of the court imposing sentence, who shall transfer it to the state treasurer, who shall deposit the fine in the reward pool fund, created by § 40-8-105.

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