An Open Letter to UUP Supporters From Wayne Woodfield, Former Vice Chair
This coming year is likely to be a growth year for the United Utah Party as we expect to welcome a large number of new party members that are looking for a change. Those in power know this, they don't like being held accountable, and they would love for our party to fail, but each year we keep coming back stronger. This year, however, our political opponents in positions of power have found a new way to attack small parties, including the UUP, threatening our ballot access and our ability to run candidates. We need your help to make sure that they do not succeed!
The United Utah Party currently enjoys the privilege of being a qualified political party in Utah with automatic ballot access. In order to maintain that access, we must receive a certain total number of votes in the general election each November.
The United Utah Party's (and other third parties') ballot access is currently under threat because of a new law passed in our last legislative session. It moved our state candidate filing deadline up from March to the beginning of January. On its surface, the law seems just procedural, but the obvious motive for this new deadline is to deter challengers from running for office against those that passed the legislation. The authors of this new law also know that it will be much harder for the United Utah Party and other third parties to attract and recruit enough candidates over the holidays and before the 2024 legislative session even begins to get the votes they need to remain a qualified political party with automatic ballot access.
People who decide to become candidates for the United Utah Party are not usually veteran politicians. They are patriotic Utahns who have decided to rise up against the current political climate of divisiveness and extremism. They are civic-minded individuals who see unopposed candidates and put themselves forward as an alternative. But those ideas usually begin to form in our minds in February or March, which is now past the filing deadline because of this new legislation. Unless we make a stand, only career politicians who prepare to run for office a year in advance will appear on the 2024 ballot.
In order to remain a qualified political party in Utah, we need candidates immediately. We need you now! We especially need people that would be willing to run in a statewide race, congressional district, or large county. But even if you are willing to run in a smaller race, every little bit helps. Being a candidate for the UUP doesn't have to be expensive, and doesn't need to be a full-time job. You can choose the level of time and resources you want to invest. We have had many candidates over the years who have done very well at having a high impact on the election with very little cost and a pair of sneakers. The party will help train you to do just that. By running for office, you will have a more prominent voice in your community and will set an example of running for office for the right reasons. You will also provide voters with the chance to vote for a moderate candidate. They'll also learn more about the UUP in the process.
If you feel like you could do this, or if you are on the fence, please reply to this email and let us know your thoughts. We'll give you a call and talk through the options in a low-pressure, no-commitment sort of way. If you have been a candidate in the past, will you please consider putting your name on the ballot one more time? In this thing, one person really can make a huge difference. As a supporter of the United Utah Party, you have already shown yourself to be an individual of political courage, willing to do more than just swim with the current. I know that many of you have given a lot of support to the UUP with your time, your money, and your votes. Will you consider also supporting the United Utah Party with your name? Let's make sure the two major parties don't succeed in their effort to shut down their competition. The candidate filing period begins today and will end on Monday, January 8 at 5:00pm. Thank you for all you do, and we hope to hear from you.
Former Vice Chair, UUP