Primary Elections and Nominations of Candidates
CHAPTER 34. Write-In Candidates
Except as otherwise provided in this title, if the name of the person for whom a voter desires to vote does not appear on a general or special election ballot, the voter may write in the name of that person.76 Del. Laws, c. 315, § 1;
(a) Superior Court shall only count a write-in vote for a person who has declared oneself a write-in candidate for the office for which that person was written-in in accordance with this chapter. Superior Court shall count a write-in vote for a candidate on a general or special election ballot if the write-in vote is for the office for which the person is a candidate.
(b) Superior Court shall account for write-in votes cast for other than declared write-in candidates as “Other Write-in Votes.”
(c) A person shall declare as a write-in candidate for an office by filing a Write-in Candidate Declaration with the State Election Commissioner for a statewide office or the Department office for the county in which the election is to be held for General Assembly, county, or City of Wilmington offices no later than 4:30 p.m. on September 20 in the year of a general election. If September 20 is a Saturday, Sunday, or holiday, the declaration must be filed no later than 4:30 p.m. on the next day that is not a Saturday, Sunday, or holiday. If the boundary of a General Assembly office includes more than 1 county, the person shall file that person’s Write-in Candidate Declaration with the Department office for the county in which that person is a registered voter.
(d) The State Election Commissioner or Department office for the county in which a person who has filed a Write-in Candidate Declaration is a registered voter shall determine whether the person is eligible to be a candidate for the office for which the person has filed the Declaration.
(e) A person shall not declare oneself a write-in candidate if that person is a candidate on the general election ballot.
(f) A person shall not declare oneself a write-in candidate for more than one office. The filing of a declaration for another office prior to the declaration deadline established in this chapter shall make any previous declaration null and void.
(g) Once a person has withdrawn as a candidate or write-in candidate for an office, that person shall not declare oneself a write-in candidate for the same office in the same year.
(h) A declared write-in candidate shall comply with the requirements in Chapter 80 of this title.
(i) A declared write-in candidate may withdraw that candidate’s candidacy by filing a withdrawal form with the office at which that candidate filed the candidate’s Write-in Candidate Declaration no later than 15 days prior to the date of the election.
(j) A write-in candidate for statewide office, the General Assembly, or any elected county office must request a criminal history background check no earlier than 90 days before the candidate filing deadline and no later than the filing deadline from the State Bureau of Identification and provide proof that the criminal history background check has been requested before filing a Write-in Candidate Declaration as required under subsection (c) of this section.
(1) A write-in candidate who files a declaration under subsection (c) of this section will be considered a provisional candidate for election until the Commissioner has made the determination that the candidate is qualified under paragraph (j)(5) of this section.
(2) The State Bureau of Identification must provide, within 10 days of the State Bureau of Identification’s receipt of the candidate’s request, a report of the candidate’s criminal history record or a statement that the State Bureau of Identification Central Repository contains no information relating to the candidate.
(3) The information received by the Commissioner from the State Bureau of Identification under this section is not a public record as defined under Chapter 100 of Title 29.
(4) The criminal history background check must be paid for by the candidate but may be reimbursed to the candidate as an authorized campaign expenditure under this title.
(5) The Commissioner must determine no later than 4 weeks prior to the general election that a candidate is qualified under § 21 of Article II of the Delaware Constitution before a write-in candidate’s name may be listed on any general election ballot.76 Del. Laws, c. 315, § 1; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1; 77 Del. Laws, c. 227, § 2; 82 Del. Laws, c. 170, § 11; 84 Del. Laws, c. 42, § 1; 84 Del. Laws, c. 185, § 6;
The State Election Commissioner, in collaboration with the Department offices, shall promulgate the Write-in Candidate Declaration and the withdrawal form.76 Del. Laws, c. 315, § 1; 77 Del. Laws, c. 227, § 2; 82 Del. Laws, c. 170, § 12;
Each Department office shall issue at least 2 copies of the list of declared write-in candidates for each office on a ballot in the county to the election officers at each election district in the county. The election officers shall post 1 copy of the list in a conspicuous location in the polling place.76 Del. Laws, c. 315, § 1; 82 Del. Laws, c. 170, § 13;
Section 3402 of this title shall apply for a special election except that a person shall file that person’s Write-in Candidate Declaration no later than the eighth day prior to the date of the election and may not withdraw that person’s declaration.76 Del. Laws, c. 315, § 1;