Friday, August 17, 2007

In Which I Solve the Ridiculous Primary Problem
This is getting stupid. Michigan's likely moving their primary up to January 15, throwing the calendar into a mess. This is the dumbest thing to have to worry about. And it's unfair for any candidate at this late date to be uncertain about when and where elections will be held. Primaries are party operations and it's time they took some national control over them.

Here, by the way, is the solution:

We should have a national primary day early in March, for all states except 4. Prior to that, one state will hold a primary (or caucus, whatever they prefer) late in January, one in mid-February and 2 on the same day in late February. That gives some retail politics, and underfunded candidates a chance to impact the process without leaving any states so late as to be irrelevant. Which 4 states get the privilege, you ask? That's the best part. They will be the 4 states whose popular vote for President in the preceding election was the closest on a percentage basis, with the caveat that no state will be allowed to be one of the first 4 on consective presidential election cycles. Any state that doesn't wish to hold an early primary, for whatever reason, can pass, and the privilege will pass to the next state on the close-election list.

This plan ensures that the most competitive states in the general election have the most say in the primary process, while not allowing any state to become a fixture. Maybe we could calculate the percentage difference to only one decimal point and if there's a tie, let the state that's had the longest wait for an early primary win the tie. Voila.

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