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Author Topic: Republicans need to change their nomination procedure  (Read 11868 times)
CARLHAYDEN
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« on: January 26, 2009, 11:33:04 am »
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If the Republicans want to avoid anoter McCain disaster, they need to modify their rules for primaries.

First, the winner take all system allowed on candidate with a minority of the total vote, and a very narrow plurality to take everything.

Second, McCain was able to win narrow pluralities in early primary states courtesy of the votes of non-Republicans in the Republican primaries.  The Democrats have recognized the problem with such 'raidable' primaries, the Republicans should wake up to the problems, and close the primaries.
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« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2009, 11:41:53 am »
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You should feel lucky that you had McCain. That way it didn't turn into a complete ass kicking.
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« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2009, 02:12:59 pm »
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the Republican primary process is designed to produce a nominee as quickly as possible. Hence the preponderence of statewide winner-take-all primaries and party-insider-only caucuses. McCain was able to do what he did this year because of a crowded primary field, and because unlike in previous years, no establishment candidate had emerged. Forcing states to take the measures you describe would violate the Republicans' professed belief in states' rights. This is why many Republican primaries continue to use WTA while the Democrats have mandated PR.

The purpose of this system is to avoid a deadlocked convention, prevent long, expensive primary fights, and give the party's nominee plenty of time to raise funds for the fall campaign.

The Democrats have recognized the problem with such 'raidable' primaries, the Republicans should wake up to the problems, and close the primaries.

a fair number of Democratic primaries are open, including the pivotal New Hampshire Primary. Quite a few Republican primaries are already closed.
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« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2009, 02:50:30 pm »
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If the Republicans want to avoid anoter McCain disaster, they need to modify their rules for primaries.

First, the winner take all system allowed on candidate with a minority of the total vote, and a very narrow plurality to take everything.

Second, McCain was able to win narrow pluralities in early primary states courtesy of the votes of non-Republicans in the Republican primaries.  The Democrats have recognized the problem with such 'raidable' primaries, the Republicans should wake up to the problems, and close the primaries.

Assuming that they are closable.  In South Carolina, the Republicans have no choice but to have an open primary since there is no party registration here.
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« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2009, 07:13:07 pm »
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If the Republicans want to avoid anoter McCain disaster, they need to modify their rules for primaries.

First, the winner take all system allowed on candidate with a minority of the total vote, and a very narrow plurality to take everything.

Second, McCain was able to win narrow pluralities in early primary states courtesy of the votes of non-Republicans in the Republican primaries.  The Democrats have recognized the problem with such 'raidable' primaries, the Republicans should wake up to the problems, and close the primaries.

Assuming that they are closable.  In South Carolina, the Republicans have no choice but to have an open primary since there is no party registration here.

likewise, Minnesota and a few other states have same-day walk-in voter registration, so a voter could presumably show up to whichever primary he wished to vote in.
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« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2009, 07:43:27 pm »
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IRV winner-takes-all could fix some of the problems of a candidate with a minority and narrow plurality winning all the votes. It would mean that if a few candidates with very similar ideologies were running against a single candidate on a different platform, while the few similar candidates would initially split the vote, after the distribution of preferences it is more likely that one of them would end up receiving the delegates. It would still allow the party to choose a candidate quickly.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2009, 09:17:10 pm by Smid »Logged
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« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2009, 08:25:19 pm »
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STV winner-takes-all could fix some of the problems of a candidate with a minority and narrow plurality winning all the votes. It would mean that if a few candidates with very similar ideologies were running against a single candidate on a different platform, while the few similar candidates would initially split the vote, after the distribution of preferences it is more likely that one of them would end up receiving the delegates. It would still allow the party to choose a candidate quickly.

Americans don't like STV because it's "too confusing". But Republicans generally, as a party, have some sort of moral opposition to proportional representation. (Not that some don't support it, or some Democrats oppose it, but PR certainly has more support among Democrats than Republicans, where it has support at all.)
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« Reply #7 on: January 26, 2009, 08:30:26 pm »
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STV is unlikely to be implemented n the United States so long as we have a strong two party system.  STV would give third parties to have a reasonable chance of developing and it would be impossible to argue that it was a good thing for primary elections yet somehow bad for the general election.  We'd need a third party at least as successful as the NDP in Canada or the LibDems in the UK before STV would be likely to develop.
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« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2009, 08:56:04 pm »
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Not all of the Democrats primaries were closed either. Obama won many states thanks to independent support that Clinton didn't get. I think the GOP's system is better than the Democrats because unlike in the Dems, one can't just win all the small caucus states and stay close in the big states and siphon off delegates. Hillary won most of the big states and the popular vote, but lost the nomination because Obama was able to fund a caucus game more efficiently.
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« Reply #9 on: January 26, 2009, 09:16:49 pm »
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STV winner-takes-all could fix some of the problems of a candidate with a minority and narrow plurality winning all the votes. It would mean that if a few candidates with very similar ideologies were running against a single candidate on a different platform, while the few similar candidates would initially split the vote, after the distribution of preferences it is more likely that one of them would end up receiving the delegates. It would still allow the party to choose a candidate quickly.

Americans don't like STV because it's "too confusing". But Republicans generally, as a party, have some sort of moral opposition to proportional representation. (Not that some don't support it, or some Democrats oppose it, but PR certainly has more support among Democrats than Republicans, where it has support at all.)

Sorry, mixing up my acronyms, I meant to say IRV. I'll edit my original post to reflect that. Indeed, "STV winner-takes-all" is an oxymoron.
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« Reply #10 on: January 26, 2009, 09:24:59 pm »
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Not all of the Democrats primaries were closed either. Obama won many states thanks to independent support that Clinton didn't get. I think the GOP's system is better than the Democrats because unlike in the Dems, one can't just win all the small caucus states and stay close in the big states and siphon off delegates. Hillary won most of the big states and the popular vote, but lost the nomination because Obama was able to fund a caucus game more efficiently.

Hillary almost certainly did not win the popular vote in primaries and caucuses where she faced Obama. Note that Obama was not on the ballot in Michigan, and agreed not to spend any money or campaign in Florida, in compliance with party rules. Also, some caucuses, such as Iowa, do not release PV numbers. 
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« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2009, 12:33:07 am »
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I disagree, the winner take all system is better, the Dems should change there procedure so Hillary could win.
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muon2
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« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2009, 05:35:17 am »
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the Republican primary process is designed to produce a nominee as quickly as possible. Hence the preponderence of statewide winner-take-all primaries and party-insider-only caucuses. McCain was able to do what he did this year because of a crowded primary field, and because unlike in previous years, no establishment candidate had emerged. Forcing states to take the measures you describe would violate the Republicans' professed belief in states' rights. This is why many Republican primaries continue to use WTA while the Democrats have mandated PR.

The purpose of this system is to avoid a deadlocked convention, prevent long, expensive primary fights, and give the party's nominee plenty of time to raise funds for the fall campaign.

I agree that the lack of a clear establishment candidate was critical for McCain. He might have been the establishment choice in early 2007, but that ceased to be the case when his campaign imploded that summer. Neither Romney nor Giuliani could take over a clear front-runner position, in part due to those who waited on Thompson's campaign. Huckabee was a late bloomer as well, rising in late 2007 as McCain got back on his feet. McCain was able to beat expectations in Iowa and use that to fuel a win in New Hampshire.

Switching to a system like that used by the Dems would have prolonged the race, but I still believe that by the time the Feb Super Tuesday results were in the race would have again reduced to the same four. With Thompson and Giuliani out of the race, McCain would have continued to add to his delegate lead under a proportional system through March and April and probably would have reached the necessary delegate numbers before the last primaries were completed.
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« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2009, 07:54:20 am »
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I hate to break it to you people, but McCain's being the nominee wasn't why you lost.
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« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2009, 08:59:13 am »
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I hate to break it to you people, but McCain's being the nominee wasn't why you lost.

Quite the contrary, it's the only reason they kept the margin of victory in single digits.
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« Reply #15 on: January 28, 2009, 11:25:50 am »
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I disagree, the winner take all system is better, the Dems should change there procedure so Hillary could win.

LOL

anyway, both systems have their flaws, but Proportional Representation is much fairer than giving all of a state's delegates to a candidate who gets 32% of the vote.
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Franzl
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« Reply #16 on: January 28, 2009, 12:01:04 pm »
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I disagree, the winner take all system is better, the Dems should change there procedure so Hillary could win.

LOL

anyway, both systems have their flaws, but Proportional Representation is much fairer than giving all of a state's delegates to a candidate who gets 32% of the vote.

I don't mind proportional distribution of delegates, but it really needs to be done statewide, and not for individual districts as is done in many (if not all...not quite sure) DEM primaries.
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Mr. Morden
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« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2009, 07:26:51 pm »
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A couple of things here.  First of all, using a PR system only lengthens the race if you have more than two major candidates.  If you have a scenario like the Dems in 2008, where Clinton and Obama are the only candidates to make a serious showing in the bulk of the states, then there's no reason why the race would be shorter with WTA as opposed to PR.  WTA means that the frontrunner can build up a bigger delegate lead, but it's also that much easier for the candidate who's trailing to catch up.  (All you need is a string of a few victories, which could be as narrow as 51%/49%, and *bang*, you're back in the game.)

Of course, if you have more than two major candidates, then PR would lengthen the race, as it becomes much harder to win a delegate majority.  (But it's actually quite rare for there to be more than two serious candidates for either party's nomination after the first couple of weeks of the primary season starting anyway.)

Second, McCain's major advantage in the GOP primary system was not that every state used WTA, as not every state did use WTA.  McCain's advantage was that there's a patchwork of different systems in different states, and the states where McCain did well (like those in the Northeast) tended to be WTA (or had similar rules which benefited the statewide winner), whereas states in the South and other regions were more likely to use some variant of PR.  One of the key hidden moments in the GOP primary race was when Giuliani's cronies in NY, NJ, and CT changed the delegate allocation rules to WTA in all three states.  They did that to benefit Giuliani, but it ended up helping McCain.

If the current rules stay in place going forward, then yeah, the GOP primary system will be somewhat tilted more towards candidates with more moderate constituencies than it used to be, just because of which states are using which system.

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« Reply #18 on: February 13, 2009, 11:14:08 am »
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Presidential candidates in each state should qualify in the same manner as other statewide candidates.
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Franzl
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« Reply #19 on: February 13, 2009, 11:18:22 am »
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Presidential candidates in each state should qualify in the same manner as other statewide candidates.

In other words, you'd want varying candidates from each party to be on the ballot in each state?
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« Reply #20 on: February 15, 2009, 04:05:59 am »
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Presidential candidates in each state should qualify in the same manner as other statewide candidates.

They already do in IL. Presidential candidates must file petitions with signatures of registered voters to be on the primary ballot statewide. The signature requirements for statewide delegates is the same as for statewide candidates, and the signature requirement for congressional district delegates is the same as for candidates for Congress in that district.
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« Reply #21 on: February 16, 2009, 04:46:22 pm »
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A couple of things here.  First of all, using a PR system only lengthens the race if you have more than two major candidates.  If you have a scenario like the Dems in 2008, where Clinton and Obama are the only candidates to make a serious showing in the bulk of the states, then there's no reason why the race would be shorter with WTA as opposed to PR. 
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« Reply #22 on: February 17, 2009, 11:35:05 pm »
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Presidential candidates in each state should qualify in the same manner as other statewide candidates.
In other words, you'd want varying candidates from each party to be on the ballot in each state?
They could run as independents.

Or the states could coordinate their primaries.  If California said that it would place presidential candidates on the general election ballot based on the results of its primary, but would permit each California party to designate other state primaries which votes could be included in the result, how many states would join in, and how many would listen to the DNC and RNC?  Florida and Michigan would sign up.  Get Texas, and the national party conventions would make sure that they chose the same candidate as the direct primary states.  The other states would scramble to join in.

2012 lot of wailing, but ultimately 13 states formally join in.  The results are not significantly different elsewhere, and the conventions eventually conform to the decision of the direct primary.  The Libertarian Party has 9 different candidates, though 5 of them are the nominee in a single state.  Possible serious independent candidates who petition in each state and bypass the primaries completely.

2016 much more coordination on dates.  43 states participate.  Iowa keeps its caucus, but permits "early voting" where voters may vote throughout day.  The caucuses proper count the actual ballots, which are shown on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News.  CSPAN still covers the delegate selection, where allocation is done based on the votes.

2020 49 states + DC participate.  South Carolina is the sole holdout, having gone back to the legislature choosing the presidential electors.

2024 After passage of constitutional amendment, the primary, general election, and runoff are conducted under a common legal framework.
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CARLHAYDEN
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« Reply #23 on: July 13, 2009, 06:05:57 am »
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I hate to break it to you people, but McCain's being the nominee wasn't why you lost.

Quite the contrary, it's the only reason they kept the margin of victory in single digits.

Well, had a little time to do some research, and looked at the numbers for the crucial (for McCain) New Hampshire primary.

First, the exit poll showed that Romney won the vote of 35% of those voters in the Republican primary who identified themselves as Republicans, whereas McCain won the vote of 34% of those voters who identified themselves as Republicans,

Second, as to the allegation that McCain was winning over non-Republicans, I cross-decked the townships in New Hampshire between their primary and general election votes.  Of the 37 townships where McCain did best in the primary, he carried 8 in the general election.  Of the 37 townships where Romney prevailed in the primary, 27 voted for McCain in the general election.

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« Reply #24 on: August 08, 2009, 11:38:45 am »
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Not all of the Democrats primaries were closed either. Obama won many states thanks to independent support that Clinton didn't get. I think the GOP's system is better than the Democrats because unlike in the Dems, one can't just win all the small caucus states and stay close in the big states and siphon off delegates. Hillary won most of the big states and the popular vote, but lost the nomination because Obama was able to fund a caucus game more efficiently.

Hillary almost certainly did not win the popular vote in primaries and caucuses where she faced Obama. Note that Obama was not on the ballot in Michigan, and agreed not to spend any money or campaign in Florida, in compliance with party rules. Also, some caucuses, such as Iowa, do not release PV numbers. 

Hillary only showed up in FL on election night. And it's Obama's fault he removed his name. If even you remove MI, Hillary has more popular votes. And caucuses don't need to release popular votes. They are undemocratic. Just look at Texas, which has a primary and a caucus. Who won the primary (the voter's choice)? Who won the caucus (the establishment choice)?
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