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Republicans vote to nominate candidates by mail to sidestep 'top-two primary' system

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Newsjock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-11 11:11 PM
Original message
Republicans vote to nominate candidates by mail to sidestep 'top-two primary' system
Source: Los Angeles Times

California Republicans voted Sunday to enact a sweeping end-run around the spirit of the "top-two primary" system adopted by voters, deciding to conduct a mail-in nominating process with all registered GOP voters before the primary election.

"This is going to energize the party because you are going to have candidates that have to organize earlier, they are going to have to talk to Republicans, they are going to be held accountable by Republican voters," said Mike Spence, the conservative party activist who wrote the proposal.

The move is an attempt to blunt the effects of Proposition 14, which changed the system to allow candidates from all parties to compete in a primary, after which the top two vote getters compete in a general election even if the two candidates are from the same party. The ballot measure, approved last year, was intended to create competition and loosen the grip that the state's most partisan voters have on primary elections. Democrats are expected to take up the matter when they hold their convention next month.

Read more: http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-gop-convention-...
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Very_Boring_Name Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-11 11:44 PM
Response to Original message
1. So wait let me get this straight
Let's say, theoretically (and for the sake of simplicity), that in the primaries Republican Candidate A gets 10 votes, Republican candidate B gets 8 votes, Democratic Candidate A gets 7 votes and Democratic candidate B gets 6 votes... there will be NO democrat on the ballot in the GE? How is this constitutional?
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JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-11 11:48 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. The two-party system is not constitutional.
I totally oppose that law. If anyone can explain to me one good argument for the law, I would appreciate it.

This law pretty much makes a third party movement impossible. How stupid can you get?
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Xithras Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 07:55 PM
Response to Reply #3
15. Actually, it makes it easier for 3rd parties to make the ballot.
Edited on Mon Mar-21-11 07:58 PM by Xithras
Theoretical election: Four Republicans, Three Democrats, and a Green

Overall vote totals after Primary Day.

Democrat A: 18% ( A little under half of Democratic votes)
Democrat B: 17% ( A little under half of Democratic votes)
Democrat C: 5% ( A minor candidate, pulling about 10% of Democratic votes)

Republican A: 12%
Republican B: 16%
Republican C: 7%
Republican D: 5%

Green: 20%


If the primary ballot is sufficiently crowded, a third party candidate merely needs to achieve a vote count higher than the TOTAL number of votes achieved by the #2 major party candidate in order to make the fall ballot. Using this example, the fall race would actually be between the Green Candidate and Democrat A, even though the major parties each scored 40% of the overall voters (80% of the voting population), while only 1 in 5 California voters went Green.

Under the "old" system, the race would be a three way competition between Republican B, Democrat A, and the Green...and Green voters would be scolded to vote Democrat to prevent Evil Republican B from winning.


In order to fend this type of attack off, the major parties would be forced to run candidates that are more palatable to the majority of their party voters.
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mopinko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 07:25 AM
Response to Reply #1
10. that's the way chicago municipal elections work.
since it was always the democratic candidate that won the regular election, and the democratic candidate was usually the candidate endorsed by the party, we went to a non-partisan run-off system. it works a lot better, imho.
the only problem is that they schedule the first round in late february, so you have gather signatures as the holidays are cranking up and campaign in the snow. guess they wont have that problem in california. and fwiw, we still have no elected a single republican.
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ieoeja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-22-11 01:47 PM
Response to Reply #10
22. The 41st ward has had a Republican alderman for years.

He ran for higher office (and lost) this year. His aide is in a runoff against a Democrat.

And the 45th features a runoff between a Democrat and Republican as well.


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Xithras Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 07:45 PM
Response to Reply #1
14. It's a reflection of reality, and many California Democrats support it.
In your theoretical situation, the Republicans have 18 votes, while the Democrats have 13 votes. In that theoretical situation, the Republicans have the numeric advantage and are going to win the GE anyway.

The idea behind the proposition was to eliminate PARTY as the deciding factor and make PLATFORM the source of division.

As an example: Using your numbers, the two Republican candidates would need to split 18 votes. California polling has consistently demonstrated a very large population of "Business Republicans", who are conservative on business issues and liberal (or at least moderate) on social issues. If two candidates ran hard to the right, this group would be alienated, possibly inviting a third candidate in, diluting their candidates so badly that they wouldn't make the general. To avoid this, the Republicans would essentially be forced to run two candidates in the primary...one hard right, and one more moderate.

When the Republicans invariably won the majorities in the primary (as they would do with your numbers), voters in the GE would get a choice...a Republican moderate, or a teabagger. Democrats would obviously vote for the more moderate of the two, while moderate Republicans would do the same.

The result of the system is easy to see. Candidates with no chance of winning don't dilute the ballot, and the candidates who do make the ballot will better represent the "majority".
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Freddie Stubbs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-22-11 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #1
19. What provision in the Constitution would it be in violation of?
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JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-11 11:46 PM
Response to Original message
2. The law was crazy in my opinion.
But the GOP attempt to circumvent it is downright cheating.
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aquart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 12:02 AM
Response to Original message
4. Fraud for fun and profit?
I'm just guessing.
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Vidar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 12:28 AM
Response to Original message
5. In my private fantasy,Obama--or some fictional president--brings the troops
home and institutes a temporary period of martial law during which a few thousand of the most evil Republicans & corporate thugs are executed. Following that, defense industries & banks are nationalize. Banks would eventually all be replaced by credit unions.

And yes, I know this will never happen, & there are numerous things wrong with my little scenario. It's just a personal fantasy that I occasionally take comfort in.
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Very_Boring_Name Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 12:48 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. Luckily in America you can't execute those who have a different view than you
No matter how evil that view may be. I think you need a mental health evaluation tbh.
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Vidar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 03:26 PM
Response to Reply #6
12. Fantasies are usually healthy as long you don't act as if they are real.
Being as I have a Masters in Psych & one in in Counseling & am paid do those evaluations of which you speak, I think I'll forgo your medical advice.
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Very_Boring_Name Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 08:33 PM
Response to Reply #12
16. Yikes
I don't think the guy who has fantasies about executing political dissidents should be evaluating anybody.
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David__77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 01:15 AM
Response to Original message
7. The Democrats should definitely do the same thing.
That proposition was bullshit. I'm glad it's the Republicans doing this first though. If anything, this will mean we'll get an even more progressive legislature.
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quakerboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 01:22 AM
Response to Original message
8. So basicly their plan is
to sort out who will run as a republican before the primary, so that they can be sure a pub makes it through the primary with and undivided republican vote?

How will this stop a tea party loon from splitting their vote anyway, jumping in and filing as a repub candidate at the last possible second because he/she was too lazy to get in earlier, or just because they don't happen to feel that the official repub candidate is pure enough?
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Ozymanithrax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 01:26 AM
Response to Original message
9. The GOP heavly backed this law..
And now they are doig and end run around it.

I'm not surprise.
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thecrow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 07:27 AM
Response to Original message
11. Ah!
....and the VOTERS are ASSURED TOTAL TRANSPARENCY..... HOW?
By those who count the mailed in votes?
Oh, I see.

Wait. :wtf:
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alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-11 03:29 PM
Response to Original message
13. OH Gee, the mail in vote supports our favorite candidates too.
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-22-11 08:55 AM
Response to Original message
17. It will be interesting to see what the CA Democratic Party comes up with.
Prop. 14 is essentially about vitiating party control of who gets a chance to get elected. We originally got primaries in the first place as a way to get around "back room deals" deciding who got elected. The party boss response to this was party only primary elections (at voters expense), giving them a long campaign in which to influence the outcome. Prop. 14 weakens that response, making outsiders more welcome. However CA is so blue and so progressive politically (taken as a whole), that the Dems may not feel the same need as the Pubbies to reassert some party-boss control.
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brooklynite Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-22-11 10:11 AM
Response to Original message
18. I have no problem with this...
...nor do I have a problem with the State requiring an "all candidates" primary system. If the State is going to pay the bills for a Party to nominate its own candidate, it gets to set the rules. If the Party was to control the process, let them run, and pay for, the entire thing.
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mahatmakanejeeves Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-22-11 10:15 AM
Response to Original message
20. But the USPS is run by the gummint! It's socialist!
Edited on Tue Mar-22-11 10:15 AM by mahatmakanejeeves
"... conduct a mail-in nominating process...."
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Kingofalldems Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-22-11 12:40 PM
Response to Original message
21. Looks like the freeper crowd likes it
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