Group proposing to end signature route to the ballot seeking paid signature gatherers so they can get on the ballot

Talk about irony. A group pushing to eliminate the signature gathering route to the primary ballot for candidates is now seeking paid signature gatherers to help them get on the ballot.

Keep My Voice, which is seeking to put an initiative on the 2018 ballot to repeal SB54, sent out an email Wednesday asking for paid signature gatherers to help them get the approximately 114,000 signatures they need before April 16th.

The KMV petition is the polar opposite of Count My Vote, which seeks to solidify the dual path for candidates while lowering their signature threshold.

KMV organizers initially said they would try to get signatures at the March neighborhood caucus meetings. The Utah GOP recently passed a resolution allowing them to circulate their petition at those meetings, but the ultimate decision will be left up to individual caucus chairs. Count My Vote organizers say they also will send their signature gatherers to those meetings.

KMV’s most recent solicitation for paid signature gatherers details pay around $30/hour for both full and part-time positions. Just last week on Facebook, the group was advertising positions at $10/hour.

One person familiar with the paid signature gathering process says most campaigns pay between $5 and $6 per valid signature, not hourly. They told that $30/hour seemed “exorbitant.”

Not only does KMV need to gather 113,143 signatures before April 16; they must also get 10% of the votes cast for president in 26 of the 29 state Senate districts. That will be a tall order in a little over two months. By contrast, a spokesperson for Count My Vote tells they are nearing the minimum threshold for signatures to get on the ballot, but just to be safe, they want to go 20% over in all 29 Senate districts, as signatures are bound to be thrown out. CMV says they should be finished with their petition drive sometime next month. They’ve been circulating petitions since November.

A representative from Keep My Voice did not respond to requests for comment.