The Senate Rules Committee's 6-4 vote Wednesday now sends the bill to the Judiciary Committee.
It effectively would overturn Secretary of State Dianna Duran's determination before the 2012 that nothing in state law permitted straight-party voting. That eliminated the practice.
Democratic Sen. Michael Sanchez of Belen said restoring straight-party voting would help the elderly by allowing them to vote faster.
Republican Sen. Stuart Ingle of Portales said voters ought to take the time to consider every race regardless of party affiliation.
According to the Albuquerque Journal ( http://bit.ly/YDJZ02), 41 percent of New Mexico voters in 2010 cast straight-party votes. Democrats got 56 percent of those.