Proposal to change the Primaries

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by v-ault, Jan 30, 2008.

  1. v-ault macrumors regular

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    #1
    Reading this article from last week just brought out my hatred for not only Mike Huckabee, but the entire primary process itself. I'm just adding up the number of ways that Romney is getting screwed in this race... my prediction two years ago that he'd get the nomination didn't take into account obstructionist idiots like Huckabee, and triangularization of like 5 weak candidates ganging up to pick away at his base of support so he wouldn't get the nomination... and its pissing me off more each day now.

    So, you know what we need to do now in primaries?

    Multi-round elections... dare I say it - like France's presidential elections.

    Lets make it three rounds.

    First round winnows down the field of candidates to four.

    Second round, down to two.

    Third round, pick your choice.

    If cost of elections is that much of a concern, make it two rounds.

    But this is such bull**** - Huckabee is just going to stay in the race to make sure Romney doesn't get the nomination, then he's going to whip out the kneepads on McCain's whithered elderly you know what so he can be his VP nominee - and I'll commit suicide.

    At a time when we need an aggressive economic policies, hard cuts in the budget, pro-growth and deflationary plans - and we might have to deal with two bumbling idiots who can't tell the difference between a dollar and a donut.

    Screw 2008... worst year ever.
     
  2. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    #2
    Proposed changes:

    1. Prison sentences for anybody talking about running for president in the year before the election.

    2. No primaries before July 1st, but August 1st would be better.

    3. Conventions in August, at the earliest.

    Per Tamara's phrase, I'm suffering from electile disfunction.

    'Rat
     
  3. Don't panic macrumors 603

    Don't panic

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    #3
    Hopefully it won't come to that and none of the republicans wins the next elections. The last 7 years were bad enough.

    as far as reform of the primaries, i would strongly support it. the current system is hopelessly broken.

    i would like to have them condensed in one month, possibly in late spring.

    Voting would occur in 4 consecutive weekends.

    the first weekend the 15 least populous states vote.
    the second weekend, states 16-30.
    the third weekend, states 31-40.
    on the last weekend, the remaining most populous states.


    reduce the circus, reduce the cost and have people in all states be of some significance.
     
  4. nbs2 macrumors 68030

    nbs2

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    #4
    I know what you are driving at, but your plan has the last weekend holding primaries all over the country. Remember that 1,2,3 are CA, TX, NY. Sure that would happen every round, but I imagine that costs would increase. Add in that many of the states that would be voting wouldn't border each other, and some folks would have to endure ads on TV for four straight weeks. As it stands, I'm about 17k people away from that happening (MD is 17k people larger than WI).

    Anyway, people that really have problems with the primaries should take it up with the political parties. While the states can set their dates, the parties are private entities, subject to their own rules (within certain bounds, as they are performing a governmental function). That's why the Democrats of MI don't count as people, and the Republicans there only count as half a person.
     
  5. atszyman macrumors 68020

    atszyman

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    #5
    I think the primaries should be completely abolished, and either have multi-round elections (one thing that could simplify the process would be to declare a winner once any candidate receives more than 50% of the votes) or do it in a single round with instant run off voting to allow people to vote how they really want rather than for the lesser of two evil (or weasels) that were chosen by a few states early on in primaries that the majority of the country has no say in.

    I'd like to see a complete finance overhaul as well to open the campaigning up to people other than the wealthy political party elite, but that's another issue.

    In grade school young children are taught that anyone can grow up to be president. They never bring up the harsh reality that you need to have lots of money, and be on the good side of one of the two political parties to even have a shot.
     
  6. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #6
    Let's not forget that in 2000 McCain was the best person for the job and Bush managed to steal it from him. If there was no primary I bet McCain would be the president today.
     
  7. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #7
    I can't see McCain taking on any of the current GOP candidates as a VP...and I believe Huckabee would consider fellating McCain a sin. :eek::rolleyes:
     
  8. themadchemist macrumors 68030

    themadchemist

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    #8
    The one advantage of the current system is that it allows candidates tight on cash a chance. If they were competing in the 50 states from the start, very few candidates could afford to spread their money enough or to buy air time in the most expensive media markets. You'd only have well-funded, machine candidates winning (I know, not much different from now, but imagine if there was *no* outside shot). In such a system, Bill Clinton would never have had a shot. Neither would John McCain.

    The idea of having the least populous states vote first is an improvement, but it's still hard to imagine that your less-well-funded candidates could afford 15 states at a time.

    While I agree that this system seems completely nonsensical, it does have certain advantages in evening the playing field for the little guy. Obviously, the best way to do that would be to have federally-financed campaigns, so that people voted with their votes instead of their cash. In that sort of system, either of the proposals you guys suggested would probably work a lot better than this nonsense.
     
  9. atszyman macrumors 68020

    atszyman

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    #9
    That's an entire other debate, but I am a firm believer that campaigns should be publicly funded and be available to anyone who can manage to get enough verifiable signatures on a petition and fill out the paperwork/meet the requirements. No more of it being only a rich man's game...
     
  10. Don't panic macrumors 603

    Don't panic

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    #10
    fixed :D
     
  11. Iscariot macrumors 68030

    Iscariot

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    #11
    I'm surprised this ridiculous farce your country calls an "election" hasn't been reduced to a money-eating contest yet. No emotional outbursts would win Hillary the election if she couldn't keep ramming dollar bills through her tear-stained lips.
     
  12. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #12
    Cynical, but stereotyping and insubstantial at the same time. Nice. :rolleyes:

    I'm certainly not happy that it costs over $100 million for a successful presidential campaign these days, but we can do more useful things than writing off the whole election as a farce, which it isn't.
     
  13. wonga1127 macrumors 6502

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    #13
    Move to multi-round voting, and make the election public. THERE is something I wouldn't mind paying taxes for.

    Oh yeah, and Lincoln-Douglas style debates. Why have 10 debates with all of them spouting the same mediocre crap they have in the last nine. I'd much rather see them actually go in depth and describe their views instead of promising change.
     
  14. Iscariot macrumors 68030

    Iscariot

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    #14
    I don't know, I guess I assumed massive hyperbole that references they act of physically eating money to determine a canditate wouldn't be taken as a particularly serious critique of the primary elections.

    But yes, your primary system is absurd. Basic game theory dictates that once you've got three or more candidates, asking people to select a single candidate is detrimental to a successful outcome (see Arrow's impossibility thoerem). You've got two of these non-optimal systems running side-by-side, increasing the likelihood that both candidates will fail to meet a reasonable set of criteria.

    In addition to a flawed system, you've got a six-month long media circus that almost completely distracts from the issues, with wrestler-style whoops and bleary-eyed women, more mud-slinging than a bikini mud-wrestling match, and the throwing away millions and millions of dollars.

    I think the current system is indeed a farce, and I stand by my statement.
     
  15. Roger1 macrumors 65816

    Roger1

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    #15
    Personally, I think we can settle this with a celebrity death match, MTV style. My money would be on Hillary over Obama. Why? Because Bill would be in her corner, distracting the referee.
    :D
     
  16. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #16
    Don't be so sure, it is a death match after all.
     
  17. harcosparky macrumors 68020

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    #17
    How about ....

    All 50 Primaries on the SAME DAY.

    Each party candidate that gets the most states is the party nominee.


    By the way if any candidate is getting screwed in this election it would be Ron Paul.

    Locked out of Debates ..... trivialized in those he is allowed to be in, nobody can here his voice.

    Why does the mainstream media fear him so much, they have chosen to squelch him?

    From what I have read, if you want to talk budgetary issues with any of the candidates Ron Paul is hands down the best knowledgeable, plus I understand he wants to do away with the IRS.

    I am totally undecided as yet .....

    Looking at the Dems, I would want Obama.

    Looking at the Republicans I might want Ron Paul.

    I'd like to see wholesale change. ( Ron Paul )

    IF NOT then

    Obama ( just to break the Clinton/Bush lock on the White House )

    Lets face it, in reality when you blow away the smoke, Dems and Reps are pretty much the same, unless you are gay and wanna marry, or want an abortion!
     
  18. nbs2 macrumors 68030

    nbs2

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    #18
    I'm sure the people of CA, NY, TX would love that suggestion. The strength of the electoral system is that it strives to balance the concerns of the general populace with those of the states themselves. Going to a straight general popular vote would result in a serious abandonment of the smaller states, and an even greater failure of politicians to hear those voices. Going to your suggestion would result in the inverse. Why bother spending $5.50/person in California when the same $5.50/person in Wyoming will yield the same benefit. Hit up the 26 smallest states, and you can win.

    In the end, the Bush victories make sense when you look at the broader picture. In both elections, the popular vote was close, but a strong majority of the states (as a whole) supported him. There are weaknesses in the electoral system, as I am not a fan of the winner take all mentality that runs rampant in the states not named NE or ME, but it will take a state legislature that knows that the state leans the opposite way for that to ever happen. And I just don't see the legislature in UT going Dem or the GOP taking the MN legislature.

    Oh! I almost forgot! How was Paul screwed? The guy has $8m cash on hand, compared to McCain, Romney, and Huckabee with $3, $2.5, and $2m respectively. He should be outspending them (granting, Romney is digging into his own pockets as well). Yet, I don't hear anything out of his camp. I don't get it - is this just a moneymaking scam for him? And don't bother bringing up Obama and Clinton and their war chests - if he's saving for that battle, he'll never have to worry.
     
  19. furcalchick macrumors 68020

    furcalchick

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    #19
    i'm also for a 'salary cap' on elections, so we don't have the situation now where only the rich win. the ones that spend the money the most wisely are more likely to win and the ones that just have tons of money to waste don't always win.

    i would also like a limited time to campaign. i would say 4 months, with primaries two months beforehand. that way, we don't have these people spend most of their office time on election and instead doing the job they were supposed to do.

    talking about that, i'm sick and tired of being told the same things over and over and it not being done. i would really like to see the candidates real insight on all issues, not just what the media wants to talk about. i think removing big media from being a major factor will make this election fair. and you wonder why people think the government is corrupt.
     
  20. KingYaba macrumors 68040

    KingYaba

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    #20
    Many gripes down here because small states with little to no electorates get to weed out the candidates before they ever come on a TX ballot. :mad: I want 50 states voting at the same time in the primaries.

    Irritates me a little how Iowa's voice, with 3 million residents, essentially outweighs Texas with ~24 million.
     
  21. v-ault thread starter macrumors regular

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    #21
    That is probably the worst idea in the entire history of the universe.

    It will give people with name recognition and money an almost insurmountable advantage. It will allow the candidates to completely ignore small rural areas of the country and basically "tarmac hop" from state to state. There will be no "one on one" with candidates and the people of states - you think that any corn farmer in Iowa will EVER get face time with a candidate anymore?

    No - candidates would be beholden only to mass populations, popular opinion and will ignore important and pressing issues that face the people in the rest of the country.

    Probably a better idea would be to separate the primary into three "waves". Perhaps the first wave would be the 10% of states with the lowest population as of the latest census. The second wave would be the next 30%, and the last wave would be the remaining most populous 50% of states. Or, you could rearrange it however you like. But paying attention to the small areas en masse would require face time with candidates, attention paid to small states with little sway - but it would also be broad enough to have candidates in 5 states that are all a little different. It would allow little known governors, senators, secretaries, ambassadors or hell - even private citizens, to get a legitimate and realistic shot at gaining some notoriety, momentum and recognition.

    I mean - as much as I hate him, would we be talking about Mike Huckabee right now if not for the election in Iowa? He wouldn't have had a shot in hell if we had a massive winner take all primary across the country at once.

    We'd be looking at Rudy and Hillary as the nominees for our 2008 election if that's how we did things.

    Massive direct democracy across a nation that spans most of the north American continent is a horrible idea for an election. Power to name recognition and money and that's it... the little guy is screwed.
     
  22. nbs2 macrumors 68030

    nbs2

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    #22
    Would you deny someone the right to spend their own money as they see fit?

    As for the time limit, one of the dangers with time limits is that challengers don't have a body of work to draw on. The incumbent, or those supported by the incumbent, would gain massively as those opposing them would have little time to build name recognition.

    If you're upset, blame your own voters. Why should they let themselves be swayed by the decisions of the people of a few states? If voters didn't worry about voting for the nom du jour, and voted for the person they agreed with, you wouldn't have this problem. Further exacerbating the issue is the desire of people to vote for "electability" rather than policy. It's just more divisiveness. Even if people move beyond those issues and the candidate were already selected, why should you be upset? The majority of the party would have made its decision. The only thing left that you might grouse about are the winner-take-all primaries.

    Additionally, note that harco wants every state to count the same. That would only further eliminate any possible influence TX could have on the outcome.

    Without changing the little issues, even if all 50 were held on the same day, TX would still be pretty meaningless. Why bother with that when I could go to NY and NJ? Some folks in TX would still vote for me (getting me something), and I could come away with the 153 from NY/NJ. That would fare better than going to TX and taking 70 or 80 of TX and nothing from NY/NJ.
     
  23. atszyman macrumors 68020

    atszyman

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    #23
    I don't see why not. There are plenty of regulations in businesses about wining/dining clients and employees. If my company wants to buy a car for the head of purchasing for a potential customer looking at our competitors why should we be stopped?

    The President has to run this country on a limited budget, and it's becoming more urgent that they actually stick to this budget. Why shouldn't the campaign be about who can run the best campaign on limited funds and/or time? Why should the advantage always go to those who have the most money to blow on the campaign?
     
  24. Naimfan macrumors 68040

    Naimfan

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    #24
    ROFLMAO! :D:D:D:D

    Brilliant! Made my day to read that.
     
  25. hulugu macrumors 68000

    hulugu

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    #25
    :D
     

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