Nonpartisan Candidates in Partisan Contests

To appear on the general election ballot, nonpartisan candidates running in partisan elections must meet one of the following qualifications:

  • Method 1: receive at least 10% of the votes cast for the office.
  • Method 2: receive a vote equal to or greater than the lowest vote received by the partisan candidate who was nominated.

If more nonpartisan candidates qualify to run in the general election than there are seats available, then the nonpartisan candidate who receives the most votes will appear on the general election ballot.

Sample Election Contest

CandidateVotes ReceivedQualify for General
Democrat A300No
Democrat B725Yes
Republican500Yes
Green50Yes
Libertarian225Yes
Nonpartisan A40No
Nonpartisan B75Yes
Total Votes1,915

Method 1 Calculation

1,915 votes x 10% = 191.5 or 192 votes required

Neither nonpartisan candidate qualified under this method.

Method 2 Calculation

Green Candidate:                   50 votes

Nonpartisan Candidate A:   40 votes

Nonpartisan Candidate B:   75 votes

Nonpartisan candidate B qualifies under this method and will appear on the general election ballot.


View printable Nonpartisan Candidates in Partisan Contests FACTSHEET. For complete information, please refer to HRS §12-41(b).


Information is available in alternate formats. If you require special assistance call the Office of Elections at 808-453-VOTE (8683). Neighbor Islands may call toll free 1-800-442-VOTE (8683) or e-mail us at elections@hawaii.gov.