No matter what anyone thinks about Idaho's closed Republican primaries, they're here to stay - for a while.
A resolution to reopen the primaries, pitched by the Idaho Association of Clerks and Commissioners at last week's Idaho State Republican Party Convention in Twin Falls, was ditched in favor of an agreement to examine the issue before making any changes.
The Idaho GOP began limiting primary participation to affiliated party members this year. Registered voter participation in the first closed primary in May, at 24 percent, was the lowest recorded turnout in Idaho primary history.
Party members have long had differing opinions on which is the best primary process, and still do.
Gov. Butch Otter has made it clear he favors opening the primaries back up, as has Idaho's Secretary of State, Ben Ysursa.
Kootenai County Clerk Cliff Hayes, a Republican, told The Press that as clerk, he prefers open primaries.
The staff at all of the polling places required special training for the May 15 election.
The county has more than 300 poll workers that require training and oversight, he said.
"It's just my opinion as the clerk of elections, it's easier if you have less regulation for the poll workers," Hayes said. "With the open primary you don't have that responsibility and restriction on the rights of the voters."