Talk:Primary election

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Good start[edit]

I think we got a good start. The next thing to be added is a subsection on bound and unbound delegates to a Presidential Nominating Convention. As things develop, the whole Nominating convention section could be spun out as a separate article if needed. nobsLewinsky 2020 02:16, 4 April 2016 (UTC)

There is something positive to be said about Superdelegates, they make it impossible for an outsider to hijack the nomination, sow discord, and force an open convention. I think a pro and con section should be included on Superdelegates.nobsLewinsky 2020 21:42, 6 April 2016 (UTC)


WP actually has a pretty piss-poor and lame article on crossover voting (which we here call by the common term in news accounts as "shenanigans"). It can be found at Party raidingWikipedia. Honestly, in my nearly 50 years as an observer and participant in the American political scene, I think I heard that term used maybe once before for a phenomenea that is any candidate, at any level, first concern in even thinking about entering a primary. nobsDump Trump 02:21, 10 April 2016 (UTC)

Hunt commission[edit]

Wikipedia says that this is where super delegates come from. While it is by no means as well known as the McGovern-Fraser commission, it seems to have enduring repercussions on democratic presidential nomination contests and should be dealt with in some detail, don't you think? Pizzameister (talk) 20:34, 19 April 2016 (UTC)

Yes, thanks for the link. WP only refers to "Mondale's vanguard" in its 1984 Primary page, but it's no secret Mondale was in firm control of the DNC after Carter's loss and retirement in 1980. We'll delve into it and use it. nobsDump Trump 20:39, 19 April 2016 (UTC)
Lookie here: Results by state, "Wisconsin" & 3 days later "Wisconsin caucus". Which one awards the delegates, and why does one state get to vote twice? nobsDump Trump 22:58, 19 April 2016 (UTC)
Comment: As a native Wisconsinite steeped in US & Wisconsin's reform history of the primary process, I'll tell you exactly what's going on. Wisconsin's 1984 Democratic Primary was a non-binding "beauty pageant" which Mondale lost, 44%-41%. Three days later, the state party machine aligned with Mondale's DNC awarded the delegates by a majority caucus to Mondale. This of coarse totally defies the reform's Bob LaFollette & the McGovern-Fraser Commission instituted to defeat the backdoor caucus system. Only this is Wisconsin, the "blue sky" reform state, where 30 years later it still has to be published as the "official results". God only knows what happened in other states, where state parties traded the voters choice for permanent privileges for insiders. nobsDump Trump 23:19, 19 April 2016 (UTC)


Here's the material extrated by User:Hipocrite:

¶ 1. Proportional allocation awards elected delegates[1] according to the percentage of the vote for non-Superdelegates. If Candidate A receives 60%, and Candidate B gets 40%, the winner's net gain is only 20% of the elected delegates and lessens a State's overall impact at the national convention, with 40% of the losers cancelling out 40% of the winners in the same party. While this method appears "democratic", it is further diluted by unelected Superdelegates which constitute about one-sixth of convention delegates and exercise veto power over the people's choice[2]. This system seems unproblematic in a narrow field of only two candidates where it's a certainty one will receive a majority.
¶ 2. The Democrats’ proportional allocation rules are largely cosmetic: the existence of Superdelegates nullifies any pretense to ‘proportional allocation’. Democrats instituted ‘proportional allocation’ originally as affirmative action quotas to promote women and minorities in the 1970s[3] but disaffection with the Florida Recount and the Electoral College gave perfect cover to maintain the ruse. In the five elections after the Clinton dynasty’s first two terms, Superdelegates decided the nominee twice -- once denying Hillary Clinton despite her popular vote majority to give the win to the first African-American nominee, and the next time awarding Hillary after peaceably awaiting her turn.
¶ 3. Winner-take-all is more in line with how the vast majority of states allocate Electors to the Electoral College and the provisions of the Twelfth Amendment[note 1]. In this scenario it's not uncommon for a victor in a three-way contest with a pluralityWikipedia of 34% to take all the delegates while the losers with 33% and 32% respectively receive nothing. Though it seems unfair to runner-ups, a state's overall standing at a national convention is strengthened.
¶ 4. Some state parties have a ‘winner-take-more’ or ‘winner-take-most’ rule, based upon a system the Democrats invented in the 1980s of awarding ‘bonus delegates’ to a candidate who carries a majority in a Congressional district. A plurality in a district would simply divvy up the minimum number allocated to each district.
  1. Elected delegates are what the New York Times refers to as "traditional delegates". As Campaigns Seek Delegates, Ordinary Voters Feel Sidelined, By JEREMY W. PETERS, New York Times, APRIL 9, 2016.
  2. Seeking Superdelegates, Ari Melber, The Nation, May 5 2008.
  3. based on recommendations of the McGovern-Fraser Commission later somewhat relaxed by Sen. Barbara MikulskiWikipedia’s commission for the 1976 elections.
  1. If the Electoral College were deadlocked, each state Congressional delegation is allowed one vote. A State with an equally divided delegation by party, say 10 members with 5 Democrats and 5 Republicans for instance, would caucus together (Republican and Democrat) and vote for one candidate, or the entire state forfeits its one vote by abstaining if the state's Congressional delegation is deadlocked.

I agree some of it could be cleaned up; some of it is cited properly and should have been discussed first. The subject however is directly related to the article title & content. nobsMr. Gorbachev Mr. Trump, tear down this wall... 22:14, 5 May 2016 (UTC)

Nobs, if you could write things without being a partisan hack, I wouldn't have a problem with them. Try. Hipocrite (talk) 23:23, 5 May 2016 (UTC)

I'm guessing paragraph 2 is what you're having trouble with; I'll try to come up with something acceptable (w/cites) and make changes elsewhere if it would be helpful. nobsMr. Trump, tear down this wall... 01:13, 6 May 2016 (UTC)
Hipocrite, while asking for an RfD is a little heavy-handed, your concerns are very positive in showing how the four commissions efforts to do away with direct and open primaries led to a requirement voters declare publicly identification of party affiliation, registration requirements, and the modern voter ID law controversies. nobsMr. Trump, tear down this wall... 17:27, 7 May 2016 (UTC)

Here's a subsection which will explain why there may be a disproportionate discussion of Democratic party rules, rule making, and reforms in this article. There is also a very good section, with a citation, on the "undemocratic" nature of the winner-take-all vs proportionality issue discussed on page 15. Hopefully this will put the partisan vs non-partisan User:Hipocrite raises in some context. nobsMr. Trump, tear down this wall... 04:18, 6 May 2016 (UTC)

Reform discussions[edit]

In 2009 the respected Brookings InstituteWikipedia, a leftist think tank, published a book entitled, [Reforming the Presidential Nomination Process, by Steven S. Smith & Melanie J. Springer, eds. The editors made these salutary points:

In all of the recent presidential election cycles, the nomination process has generated controversy. Almost without exception, the controversy has been in the Democratic Party, which took the lead in reforming its nomination process in the 1970s. (p.1)

What reforms the Republicans have instituted have followed the pattern laid out by Democrats.

...the Republicans’ delegate selection processes evolved in tandem with reforms in the Democratic Party. Partly because many reform-minded Republicans also favored primaries...The Republicans, like the Democrats, also moved to processes that encouraged broader participation in those states that had closed party committee or caucus systems. The nationalization of candidate campaigns, movement to less politically seasoned delegates, and front-loading have also been similar for the two parties.
There are also important differences between the parties. Republican national party rules do not impose as many restrictions on state delegate selection processes as the Democrats’ post-1968 rules. Republicans never banned winner-take-all systems that facilitated the accumulation of delegates by early front-runners for the nomination; they never adopted a proportionality rule; they never adopted quotas for demographic groups; they never reserved seats for members of Congress; and they never imposed a national threshold for acquiring delegates in caucuses or primaries...(pp.8-9)


Because of the similiariies in the candidates vis-a-vis competancy, trustworthiness, sanity, and derangement, 2016 may see a return to regionalism. IOW, since a voter is forced to choose a deranged candidate, they may be comfortable with the deranged candidate from the region they identify most with, Time will tell.nobsGary Johnson for Rehab! 11:41, 18 September 2016 (UTC)