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‘Closed’ primaries have a major impact on 2016 race

 
 
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 05:01 am
‘Closed’ primaries have a major impact on 2016 race.
Published: April 19, 2016


Quote:
Since early February, Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton have faced off in 37 nominating contests, and in that time, some patterns have emerged. Sanders has done extremely well in caucuses; Clinton has done better in primaries. Sanders has excelled with younger voters; Clinton has picked up greater support from older voters. Sanders has thrived in states with less racial and ethnic diversity; Clinton has been buoyed by African-American and Latino support.

But there’s another key consideration that often gets overlooked: the kind of primary or caucus has a big effect on the outcome. More specifically, the question to keep in mind is whether the nominating contest is “closed” (only Democrats can participate) or “open” (anyone can help choose the Democratic nominee).

It’s surprising just how much this matters. In closed contests, Clinton tends to have more success, while in open contests, Sanders, Congress’ longest-serving independent, has consistent enjoyed an advantage.

All of this is of particular interest today, of course, because New York’s presidential primaries are closed – Democratic voters will choose the Democratic candidate and Republican voters will choose the Republican candidate.

For Team Sanders, this creates a challenge. The Washington Post reported this week that were it not for independent voters casting ballots in open contests, the Vermont senator “probably would’ve been sunk long ago.”

In Michigan, where Sanders won his greatest upset, Clinton beat him by 18 points among self-identified Democrats, according to exit polls. In Oklahoma, one of the few states that Clinton won in 2008’s primary but lost this year, she beat Sanders by nine points with Democrats. In Wisconsin, Sanders won overall by 13 points; he split the Democratic vote with Clinton 50-50.

In each case, independents who felt like pulling a Democratic ballot were able to vote for Sanders. In New York, many of the people who crowded Sanders’s rallies – some lining up for hours, Bernie buttons on their winter coats – admitted that they had not understood that New York’s rules were different.

And as a result, those independent supporters will have no choice but to remain on the sidelines today. That doesn’t necessarily mean Sanders is doomed in the Empire State, but it creates an additional wrinkle in his attempt at an upset.

Complicating matters further, there are 16 contests remaining in the Democratic race, including today’s New York primary, and half of them limit participation to registered Democratic voters.

Is this an area for potential reforms?

The Post’s article noted that Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz prefers a nominating process in which the party’s voters choose the party’s candidates.

“I’m speaking for myself – this is not something that the national party’s had a discussion on – but in my opinion the Democratic primary should be determined by Democratic voters,” Wasserman Schultz said last week.

And that’s hardly an unreasonable position to take. Putting aside the specifics of the 2016 race, advocates for strong parties have long seen inherent value in closed primaries. Critics, meanwhile, argue that parties should try to bring more people into the process, even if that means reaching outside of the party’s core base, and even if it opens the door to possible mischief (Democrats voting in Republican primaries or vice versa).

I’ve long wondered if there’s an opportunity for a compromise in Democratic politics. Party officials tend to support the role of superdelegates as a possible stopgap measure if non-Democrats make a problematic choice in choosing the Democratic nominee. These officials, the thinking goes, can correct “mistakes” made through open primaries.

Perhaps the Democratic Party would give up on superdelegates’ role altogether if the nominating process switched to closed primaries? Maybe trade one for the other?

http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/closed-primaries-have-major-impact-2016-race
 
hightor
 
  5  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 06:00 am
I've never understood the rationale for "open" primaries within what is essentially a two-party system. There should be better options for independent voters and independent candidates rather than their having to piggyback on the established parties. Ranked choice voting would do a lot to break the two party monopoly.
Real Music
 
  1  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 06:18 am
@hightor,
I do have problems with open primaries, because voters who are not registered with that particular party are permitted to vote for that party's nominee. This includes independents voting in the democrat or republican primaries. It also means that registered republicans can vote in democrats primaries. It also means that registered democrats can vote in republicans primaries. That could lead into shenanigans of one party organizing a strategy of picking the other party's nominee.
izzythepush
 
  2  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 10:43 am
@hightor,
hightor wrote:

I've never understood the rationale for "open" primaries within what is essentially a two-party system.


I've never understood any of it. It's very alien to how we do things. Every time it comes round we have BBC journalists explaining things. I usually manage to get my head round it for a bit, normally just in time for the candidate to be announced, then it disappears into the ether.

If anyone were to ask me now the difference between a caucus and a primary I wouldn't have a clue.
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 11:32 am
@izzythepush,
izzythepush wrote:
If anyone were to ask me now the difference between a caucus and a primary I wouldn't have a clue.

A primary is like a miniature election.

A caucus is like a miniature political convention.
oralloy
 
  -2  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 11:36 am
@Real Music,
Real Music wrote:
That could lead into shenanigans of one party organizing a strategy of picking the other party's nominee.

I've often crossed party lines and voted for moderate Republicans. For instance, in the 2016 primaries I voted for Kasich.

Every single time I've done this, the reason was because I thought the moderate Republican was the best possible candidate out of everyone running in both parties. It was never about sabotage.
Real Music
 
  2  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 04:17 pm
@oralloy,
Quote:
A primary is like a miniature election.
A caucus is like a miniature political convention.

Knowing the difference between a primary and a caucus is one thing. Explaining it and describing it to another person isn't as easy. Your basic description of the difference between a caucus and a primary is precise and to the point. The state I live in is a caucus state, not a primary state. I personally prefer primaries over caucuses. I do have my reasons for preferring primaries over caucuses. One of my reasons for preferring primaries over caucuses is that primaries normally have a higher percentage of voter participation in the process. I also have other reasons for my preference to primaries over caucuses.
0 Replies
 
Real Music
 
  2  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 04:25 pm
@oralloy,
Quote:
I've often crossed party lines and voted for moderate Republicans. For instance, in the 2016 primaries I voted for Kasich.

Every single time I've done this, the reason was because I thought the moderate Republican was the best possible candidate out of everyone running in both parties. It was never about sabotage.

I am not accusing you, but I wouldn't be surprised at all to discover organized sabotaging in open primaries.
Real Music
 
  3  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 05:30 pm
@hightor,
Quote:
I've never understood the rationale for "open" primaries within what is essentially a two-party system. There should be better options for independent voters and independent candidates rather than their having to piggyback on the established parties.


I feel that if any voter wants to participate in a party's primaries, they should be required to change their party registration to that particular party during that particular election cycle. I use to didn't care to whether or not a primary was "open" or "closed." I now support the "closed" primary process. I no longer support the "open" primary process. My change of views on this issue had just changed today.
0 Replies
 
Real Music
 
  2  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2018 07:25 pm
How Political Primaries Work

Quote:
A primary closely resembles a general election -- when voters choose between candidates from each party for office. In a primary, however, the voter casts his or her vote to determine who will go onto the general election. This is a primary in a nutshell. Although primaries are more straightforward than caucuses -- which also help choose a party's candidate for president -- the primary process as a whole is somewhat convoluted.

Primaries can be closed or open. For simplicity's sake, let's start with the closed primary. In this type, only registered voters affiliated with a given party have the chance to go to the polls to cast their vote for their chosen candidate within that party. In closed primaries, only Republicans can vote for Republicans and Democrats for Democrats. Independent voters -- those who have opted to choose neither party, but are registered voters -- aren't allowed to cast a ballot. A closed primary can be modified to allow independents to cast a vote for a candidate from one party or another.

In open primaries, a voter can cast his or her ballot for either party. In most cases, the voter must choose a party to vote for by making a public statement at the polling station. In this circumstance, the voter will tell the election volunteer which party he or she chooses to vote for. He or she will then receive a ballot containing the candidates for that party. In some open primaries, voters may choose which party's candidate to vote for privately in the polling booth.

https://people.howstuffworks.com/primary1.htm
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 01:49 am
@Real Music,
Thank you. From this side of the pond I find it strange, and if I'm being honest, a little disturbing, that people have to register as supporters of a particular political party.

Over here people are free to join whatever party they want, and only the party keeps those records. There's nothing registered outside of that.

I'm a member of the Labour party but I still get Tories knocking on the door come election time.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 03:48 am
Whether or not someone is required to register as a member of a particular party varies from state to state. In most states, one can vote in any party's primary, but only in one. There is no constitutional provision for primary elections. That is determined in each state. That some states run so-called closed primaries is not so unusual. After all, in Westminster-style governments, only party members can choose the party's leader, and if that party gets the most seats in an election, the party leader becomes the PM, without ever having faced an opponent in a national election.

The system is not unusual, it's just different. I have no problem with closed primaries, and the complaints come from those who had not bothered to determine how the system works in the state in which they reside. Boo Hoo . . .
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 04:10 am
@Setanta,
I don't want to start another pointless argument with you. All I was saying is that I would feel uncomfortable knowing that some government agency, be it at state or federal level, has a record of everyone's political affiliations.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 04:12 am
@izzythepush,
Do you allege that governments in Westminster systems don't have such records? I wouldn't believe it if you did tell me that, Mr. "Another pointless argument"--which is about the only kind I ever see you start.
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 04:25 am
@Setanta,
I'm not alleging anything, but if you claim that central government keeps records of the general populations voting intentions I would expect you to have some proof to back that up.

Parties have their own records, membership obviously, and how people respond during canvassing, but that's a far cry from central government keeping such details.

The slightest criticism of America, however mild, always elicits this rabid response from you. I don't know why you think you should be able to tell all nations how to think and feel and how to run their affairs.

Btw, during a general election the party leaders are up against each other. Most people vote for their party and its leader, and to claim otherwise is ridiculous.

The Westminster system for all its faults could never put a fascist like Donald Trump in charge of the country.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 04:38 am
@izzythepush,
You're hilariois--the slightest criticism of you silly little country and it's silly little institutions always elicits a rabid response from you. You see how easy it is to puke up the nastiness which is your signature around here? Your system put Wellington in office, which is precisely why the working class referred to the 1819 incident at Manchester as the Peterloo massacre. Your system put Palmerston in office, who said there would be no new reform bill while he was living--and that was exactly what happened. He died in October, 1865, and the first reform act after 1832 was passed in 1867, and it only franchised a portion of the working class. Shall we look at Lloyd George?

Phony indignation and wild charges are the only two bolts in your quiver.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 04:41 am
@Real Music,
That's not at all an uncommon occurrence, especially in cases in which one's preferred candidate looks like a shoo-in. I suspect that's one thing which motivated states which require party registrations.
0 Replies
 
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 05:56 am
@Setanta,
Try looking in a mirror Setanta, you were the one who went off on a wobbly when I dared to say that I would feel uncomfortable with a system where we had to register our political affiliations with government.

You have a fascist mindset, anything other than forelock tugging deference towards your country is met with bellicose fury.

I don't tell you what to do, think or feel, or how you should deal with your national monuments and heritage, but you think being American gives you the right to stick your nose in our affairs and tell everyone else what to do. It's people like you who give ordinary decent Americans a bad rep.

You can't tell us to think or feel, and once you realise that you may have less problems moving your bowels
0 Replies
 
izzythepush
 
  0  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 06:00 am
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:

You're hilariois-- (sic)


That's very kind of you to say so. I thought most of my jokes shot over your head.

Btw. Lloyd George died in 1945, he's hardly a relevant figure today. Your president is a problem we all have to deal with right now, in the present day.

It's 2018, try living in the 21st Century for a change.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 06:38 am
@izzythepush,
Vituperation is all you have to offer. You're attempting to comment on a subject of which you are woefully ignorant, so you default to your normal course of nasty personal attacks. If it weren't me, it would be Oralloy or someone else. If you actually knew anything about the topic, it might be worth reading your posts. That, however, is not the case.
0 Replies
 
 

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