Primary Colors

I made this point in comments a while ago, but I wanted to see what kind of response it got from the front page.  Some Republicans and Democrats in Georgia are pushing for Georgia to join nearly 20 other states in front-loading their primaries on a Super Tuesday to end all previously known Super Tuesdays.

What do you guys think?  Personally, I think there is value in holding Georgia’s primary on a more isolated day.  If we have our primary the same day as California, New York, Florida and others, does anyone think any candidates (on either side) will spend a day (or a dime) in Georgia?  I say let Super Tuesday happen: if it produces a nominee then Georgia wouldn’t have mattered anyway, if it doesn’t, having a later Georgia primary will cause the remaining candidates that are duking it out to flood our state.  It will be great for the political parties.

But, some Republicans in the legislature are moving forward anyway with a plan to frontload Georgia’s primary, and they are certainly encouraged by some Democrats.  Any thoughts on this matter, how does it affect both parties, and what do you think?


  1. Erick says:

    It is a horrible, stupid, bassackward idea.

    Front loading primaries for both parties greatly, greatly increases the probability that they get lemons for nominees.

  2. Bull Moose says:

    I agree with Erick, it’s a horrible idea pushed by those who support Romney.

    The frontloaded system is just the wrong way that this matter nominating process should be handled.

    Why not have 4 states have a primary every Tuesday beginning with New Hampshire and continuing till it’s done. Every 4 years, rotate the states that start with the ones who were last from the previous primaries, excluding New Hampshire and Iowa.

  3. Ben Marshall says:

    But how is the status quo better? If you don’t win either the Iowa caucus or NH primary, you’re out. You’ve gotta win one, then super tuesday comes, and its all decided. So as of now, if we are later on, we get screwed. But if we move it up to the same day as everyone else…we get screwed.

    Either way, our voice isn’t heard over anyone else, and we become unimportant either way.

    I don’t think the status quo or the option to move it up with everyone gets us what we want, and in the end they are the same.

    The problem with Erick’s solution is that you are still putting Iowa and NH first, thereby meaning that we end up in the problem we are already in, with winning one of those two states as a necessity to have a shot.

  4. Bull Moose says:

    if after Iowa and New Hampshire you have 4 alternating states every week, it makes Iowa and New Hampshire symbolic more than anything…

    Imagine if after Iowa and New Hampshire you have Oregon, New Mexico, Tennessee, and Rhode Island. Then the following week North Dakota, Connecticut, Kentucky, and Arizona.

    Continue along till you run out of states…

    That would balance out the role of super sized states with small states with these front loaded primaries.

    or , change the winner gake all system and make it proportional… That might change things too… I like my first idea better though…

  5. sndeak says:

    I think Georgia should have their primary Feb 12 or 19 and maybe team up with Ohio.

    I read PA is considering moving up. If NY moves up too, that could mean that 2770 of the 4322 delegates for the Dems will be allocated on or before Feb 5 2008. That is nuts.

  6. dingleberry says:

    Here’s a thought…

    Perhaps all 50 states should go on the same day. Then we treat it like any other primary. If a man fails to win a majority, then the top two go into a runoff the next week…

    Or we could get really smart and make it an instant runoff ballot….

    The problem with certain primaries being earlier than others is that by the time the primary reaches certain states, many of the candidates have already dropped out and you’re left with duds like George W. Bush and John McCain. Or, as will be this year’s case, obvious phonies like Mitt Romney and Rudy Guiliani.

  7. drjay says:

    i am rereading hunter thompsons “great shark hunt ” right now and really think we’d be better served to stretch the season out like it was back then–the california primary in JUNE!!! was very important in 72 as had been wisconsin in march for carter in 76–so what if the field is winnowed somewhat–the parties need to take back some power and encourage later primaries w/ weighted delegates or even leave enough “at large” or unpledged delegates out there that the primaries are used to exercise strength and gain momentum to convince the unpledged/at large to support them…

  8. Mike Hauncho says:

    Part of the problem with moving our primary up is that we do not know all there is to know about the candidates. Our electorate at the national convention must then vote for whoever the state selected through the first two ballots. I think we would be committing ourselves too early for a candidate when so much can happen in just a short time.

  9. Icarus says:



    have a very different opinion on whom this helps.

    After two small states, you have what amounts to a national primary.

    When the following states:

    New York, California, Florida, Texas, Illinois, New Jersey, Georgia, North Carolina, Arizona, and others

    have their primary on the same day,

    Romeny is not the benefactor.

    Rudy will cary New York, New Jersey, Illinois, and probably Florida and Texas. Don’t care to figure out the RNC delegate count, but that’s a lot of electoral votes. Romney may take a few small states, but front loading benefits the centrist candidates, not the social conservatives.

  10. buzzbrockway says:

    The problem is Georgia is not a player in picking the nominees of either Party. By the time we hold our primary the races are all but over. Let’s move up our Primary and give ourselves a chance to actualy help pick the nominees.

  11. I am not a proponent of this primary crunching to Febuary 2008. The way the states are going, they should just have every state primary altogther on a tuesday in Febuary 2008. The primary crunching does not truly benefit anyone. It is just rushing the primary process.

  12. Chrishardcore made a point “If we have our primary the same day as California, New York, Florida and others, does anyone think any candidates (on either side) will spend a day (or a dime) in Georgia?”. Georgia is one of the states growing in electorial college votes. I think candidates even in primaries should consider Georgia as one of the Key States in Primaries and General Presidential elections

  13. Bull Moose says:

    moving our primary up isn’t going to increase our role at all…

    The only way for the nominating process to be totally fair is to do 4 states every week until all the states have gone. Alternate regions, sizes, etc…

    RIght now, we’ve started so early, people already have buyers remorse…

  14. dingleberry says:

    No Bull…it’s not the “only” way.

    I mentioned another way to make it fair earlier.

    Besides, you’re not truly concerned about the primary process being “fair” for everyone. You’re angry because now McCain will actually have to compete.

  15. CHelf says:

    When you have about 20 states moving to make their Primary the same as a few others as well as GA, the intent is lost. The whole point in trying to move up is to be a player and separate from the rest of the pack. If everyone or a large majority moves up, you’ve just diluted yourself again and made it where you are just another state. Candidates will be less likely to make it to the states with less sway and the intent of being a key player is nullified.

    The most we get out of moving up is to claim a small fraction of involvement in picking the nominee in a front loaded system. The rush to stack this up front means less time to travel and spend any resources in these states. It means most campaigns will focus on the larger states with a higher electoral count and maybe a token visit in medium to smaller states.

    Frontloading means we get to be involved with picking them but they are less likely to be involved with visiting us or giving us the time of day.

  16. Adam says:

    I like Bull’s proposal of a more regular schedule. If I were king of the primary process (haha) I would be more inclined to break the voting up into 6 regions and have a vote every two weeks. I feel this would give candidates a chance to recover from a poor showing in one vote and give them enough time to strategize for the next. I’d make the regions Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, Plains, Western, and Southwest, in that order. That alternates liberal regions with conservative regions (roughly). Of course this is all vain fantasy on my part. 😉

  17. MountainThinker says:

    I think Erick’s comments in the first were sufficient…

    “It is a horrible, stupid, bassackward idea.

    Front loading primaries for both parties greatly, greatly increases the probability that they get lemons for nominees. ”

    God Help Us…

  18. AlanSmithee says:

    Moving up the primary could help the state Democratic Party raise money. They already got Edwards for their annual fundraiser, and the other Democratic Presidential candidates are more likely to come if the primary is February 5.

  19. Demonbeck says:

    If we are going to move our primary up, move it up to the Monday before Super Tuesday.

    It’s the equivalent to bidding $1 more than the guy next to you in the Price is Right.

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