Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Have Primary Elections become useless?

Mac Johnson is pessimistic about the choices available to the voter.

Primary elections are rapidly becoming nothing more than vestigial ceremonies, like the vote of the Electoral College. In the guise of “sparing” the eventual winner (as if anyone knows for sure who that would be) the expense and bad press of an internal fight, party insiders now openly choose the winner of the primary for the voters. They then force out or financially strangle all those who would dare to “split the party” by competing in an actual election. Not surprisingly, party insiders are the candidates that are chosen for the voters most every time.

He points to the efforts of the Republican Party to eliminate a challenger to the worthless Lincoln Chaffee in Rhode Island.

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Right now in Rhode Island, the national Republican Party is doing everything in its power to force Republican voters to re-elect unpopular Sen. Lincoln Chaffee, by actively campaigning against his Republican primary challenger, Steve Laffey. Rather than voters using the primary to tell the leadership who to support, the leadership is using the primary to tell the voters who to support. “Orwellian” is an overused word, but it applies here.

Check out the rest of his essay here.

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