Skip to comments.GOP Nominations: Don't do it (GOP-E Screwing Up Virginia)
Posted on 06/08/2012 5:28:17 AM PDT by Timber Rattler
In October 2011, the Republican Party of Virginia's State Central Committee voted to nominate its 2013 statewide ticket in a primary. Tuesday's Times-Dispatch reported that the committee might change the rules and opt to nominate candidates in a convention instead. The appropriate response runs to three words: Don't do it.
The Times-Dispatch long has considered primaries the preferred vehicles for nominations for both parties. Although primaries can compel campaigns to spend more money, they tend to leave less blood on the floor. Caucuses and conventions often turn personal; they open wounds. They also attract activists, ideologues, partisans and crackpots who might not represent a party's mainstream. Primaries broaden the base.
Candidates who have declared their 2013 intentions presumably entered under the assumption a GOP primary would occur. A rules change now would violate an honor code that, although unstated, ought to govern party operations.
The principal candidates for the GOP's gubernatorial nomination are Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli. A move to a convention likely would boost the latter. Bolling's team urges the committee to stay with its original decision. Cuccinelli's team expresses its confidence it would win in either a primary or convention but adds that it would welcome using the money it would spend in a primary to defeat the Democratic nominee in the fall. If Cuccinelli were to repudiate a rules change, a drive for a convention would collapse. This is a test not of procedure but of character.
Conventions give over the party nomination to the people who have the least else going on in their lives, and therefore the most time to give up to go to conventions. They exclude anybody who works on saturdays, anybody who has a job that takes them overseas, all active duty military personnel. They exclude people who can’t afford the convention fee (unlike a primary, you can charge people to attend a convention). They exclude people who don’t have good transportation. They exclude a lot of people who live in southwest Virginia, since conventions are generally held in Richmond.
And they are easily corrupted — it’s easier to pay off a few hundred people to attend a convention, than tens of thousands of people to throw a primary.
Bill did support Romney, in 2008 and in 2012. Romney is now our nominee, and there was nobody else competing in Virginia. Jim DeMint endorsed Romney in 2008 as well, so Bill Bolling was not alone in this supposed “apostasy”.
It’s silly to dismiss a solid conservative record over an endorsement, but you are free to do so if you wish. Just so people understand the basis for your opinion.
He can go find some other state to squat.
You people can't defend him so why do you want to run him for higher office?
That's a lot closer than just an endorsement!
He was the “honorary chair” for Romney here in Virginia.
Too bad Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich didn’t have someone who knew what they were doing to file their paperwork — maybe I would have had a reason to show up for the primary.
BTW, Romney contacted me 3 times to collect signatures. And even though I wrote multiple e-mails to the Perry, Santorum, and Gingrich campaigns, none of them ever responded to ask me to give a signature, much less collect them, until 3 days before the due date when Gingrich announced we should all drive into another county to sign forms for him.
That is an excellent point.
Regular people have obligations- and cannot usually just take off on a trip, and in many cases cannot choose when they can do so. In short, regular people generally don’t go to conventions. Closed primary systems screen out Democrats from selecting Republican candidates, and will have the further advantage of suppressing GOP-e left-wingers. Having all the states have their closed primaries on the same day will give those of us in conservative states a real voice in selecting the candidate instead of having to rubber-stamp some northeastern gungrabbing liberal.
Newt could have collected thousands of signatures himself just while waiting for Calista to get done shopping at the Michaels across the way.
The primary being discussed here is for state offices, i.e., Governor, Lt. Gov. and AG. Next year in VA there will be a contest between the current Lt Gov and the current AG to run for Gov. So the argument is = do we nominate our GOP candidate for Governor of VA in ‘13 through a primary or convention system? One state office, one party.
VA doesn’t have a closed primary. No registration by party. Last March I worked as an election official at the Republican-only presidential primary, and saw voters in that one-party primary exit the polling place, and get into their cars with Obama/Kaine/Moran/Visualize Peace bumper stickers. Yep .. expanding participation, that’s the ticket!
Back in the early 90s, as ‘regular people,’ we went to Richmond for two conventions. Both were packed, literally to the rafters, with ‘regular people.’ It’s quite possible to be both ‘regular people’ and politically engaged.
There is plenty of notice - months - so alternate plans can be made to one’s normal Saturday obligations. Cost was all of $15 to register. Charter buses are available. Maybe voting should be made more difficult, more of a commitment, than it’s become in recent years.
The one exception is, in fact, military. But, let’s be honest here: How many military request and return their ballots, especially for a primary? Most military are not willing to request a Republican or a Democrat ballot, which they must do to vote in a primary.
To run a primary costs the taxpayers. Every polling place is staffed with an average of 6 election officials. Not much money for each official but overall the cost is high when you factor in the number of polling places (2500 +/-) statewide. The various electoral boards are also staffed; there are printing and personnel costs. All this for what % of people who actually vote? In March, 265,570 voted statewide in the Republican presidential primary. Granted those were unique circumstances in ‘12, but in ‘08 with 6 on the ballot and no controversy the GOP turnout was only 489,152.
Huh? What are you talking about?
To participate in the convention system, you do not have to “take off on a trip”.
In the Convention System regular people are fully represented by the delegates they elect to represent them at the conventions. There is no “trip” necessary.
The “closed primaries” voting rules do nothing to correct the failures of the “primary system” I described in my post. Primaries are what prevent the voices of regular people from being heard and have proven to be of such great harm to the party and convention system that we should do away with them.
It is hard to believe anyone is so naive that they actually believe primary elections of any kind give them a “real voice”. What they do give you is the ILLUSION of having a “real voice”.
If we have a convention, the local delegate selection will be underrepresented such that everybody who signs up will automatically be deemed to be elected, so you will all just go on to the state convention.
We don’t do the step where a vote is taken locally, and delegates are pledged to support a candidate.
On the other hand, representation is proportional, so if you have a local candidate (like we do), and it means you have a lot of interest, each person’s vote for your county has less weight. So theoretically, if you trusted people, you could figure out who would actually show up, and then send 10% of them in the same proportion, and achieve the same result.
I am stuned.
I’m going to have to process all this.
It is so different from what we do out here in the provinces.
By the way, are you describing Connecticut? That other guy was talking Virginia. And I’m still trying to wrap my head around what he told me. But, I can sure relate to what he said about the groupthink and oldsters not cooperating with anyone else who tries to participate in the party life on the local level.
I will post more after I recover from this latest convention we just had.
That’s the Virginia process.
I’ve done a couple of conventions. They are fun. We tried to nominate Bob Marshall for Senate against Jim Gilmore, but lost by a small amount — in raw numbers, Marshall had more people at the convention, but it was because Prince William County had a large contingent supporting him, so our votes didn’t count for much.
We also had the upstart Jeff Frederick trying to win the RPV chair, and he did win that seat, only to get run out of office the following year.
Ok. waking up now, the CT has nothing to do with the state-of Conn., unlike with EDINVA.
When you elaborated on Ed’s description of paying the $25 to just be a delegate, and stuff about being deemed a delegate, rather than actually being elected a delegate at your precinct convention, then having those delegates elect delegates to the state convention, who then elect delegates to the national convention, I realize now that in your geographical area something is going on that has the way the convention system is supposed to work all screwed up.
Have people have become so cynical, or apathetic, or miseducated, or so uninterested in knowing their neighbors in their own towns or subdivisions or whatever, that there is no way organize and actually to act locally in the party? Have your politicians taken over the parties entirely??
In a state where you can’t register by party, it’s hard to do party stuff. Plus, we are pretty conservative still, so our state runs pretty well, which tends to make people complacent. Like 6 of our 8 county supervisors are republican, and a few are pretty good conservatives.
“In a state where you cant register by party, its hard to do party stuff.”
Here’s how you do it, without requiring people to register by party at voter registration time.
Require voters who wish to vote in a primary election to vote in the primary of only one party, with primary day for all parties being held on the same date. Stamp the voters’ voter ID card with the name of the party they voted in at the polls. That way, they are identified at that time with party affiliation and can only vote in the reunoff of the party whose primary they voted in. Hold the precinct convention 30 minutes after polls close at the building where voting took place (or very nearby) and the crossover voters, if they attend at all, are easily identifiable, will be outvoted, and the liberals will vote for liberal democrats in their precinct to attend their county convention and the conservatives will elect conservatives to represent them at their Republican (or Libertarian Party, or Constitution Party) conventions.
It’s easy to do party stuff in that system.
A primary was chosen......2 years in advance of the general election, the longest time in advance, ever, before the election, that this choice has been made.
Why? Bolling had the RINO votes on State Central to get his way....
Bolling no longer has the RINO majority on State Central and he suspected, correctly, that voters would choose more Conservative members of state central this year....which they did.
The more liberal Republican ALWAYS wants a primary because Democrats and independents can choose the REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE...not to mention a statewide primary sticks the Taxpayers with a $3,000,000 tab.
There is nothing CONSERVATIVE about a primary.
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