SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The Latest on straight-ticket voting in New Mexico (all times local):

2:15 p.m.

The Republican Party of New Mexico is planning to take legal action after the state's top elections official reinstated the option of straight-ticket voting in which a voter can choose candidates from the same party all at once.

Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver, a Democrat, says the option will make voting easier.

But Republicans describe the move as a partisan maneuver.

State GOP Chairman Ryan Cangiolosi says the change will benefit Toulouse Oliver's own re-election bid and he questioned the hasty effort to bring it back with the 2018 general election fast approaching.

Cangiolosi also questioned Toulouse Oliver's ability to referee New Mexico's elections while also being a candidate, suggesting that it undermines any confidence New Mexico voters can have in the fairness of the election.

The Democratic Party of New Mexico supported the return of straight-ticket voting.


1:42 p.m.

New Mexico Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver is restoring straight-ticket voting in which a slate of major-party candidates can be chosen all at one time.

Toulouse Oliver, a Democrat, announced Wednesday that she is formatting the 2018 general election ballot to once again include the option for straight-party voting. The option was removed beginning in 2012 elections by then-Secretary of State Dianna Duran.

Toulouse Oliver contends the more options that are available, the easier it is for eligible voters to participate. She says state law gives her office the authority to decide the format of the paper ballots that are used in New Mexico elections.

Many Republicans regard the practice of straight-ticket voting as unfair to individual candidates in New Mexico, where registered Democrats far outnumber Republicans.