Another good idea that will never happen


Fiasco: Bachmann, Huntsman, Santorum fail to make Virginia ballot

That’s not even the worst part. The worst part is that Perry and Gingrich, either one of whom could still become the Great Grassroots Hope against Romney, might not have qualified either. You need 10,000 signatures to make the ballot but 15,000 are recommended since a bunch are bound to be thrown out as false or duplicative as the petitions are scrutinized. You also need at least 600 signatures from each of Virginia’s 11 congressional districts. Romney submitted 16,026 and Ron Paul submitted 14,361. Perry’s total: 11,911. Gingrich’s: 11,050. If they end up getting bounced, the Republican primary ballot for one of America’s key swing states will consist exclusively of … Mitt Romney and Ron Paul.


I was reading that when it struck me that the article is only talking about one state. In order to get on the ballot in all 57 states each candidate would have to jump through numerous hoops of different requirements, deadlines and fees. If each state was similar to Virginia you would need 500,000 people to sign petitions. I’m guessing the filing fees are pretty substantial too.

Then there is the trouble and cost of holding primary elections. That’s public money. In a big state like California the cost of holding an election is in the millions. When they held a special election to recall Gray Davis in 2003 it cost over $25 million.

So what’s the point of doing all that if the parties ignore the results?

Why not require that whenever a party fails to abide by the results of a primary election (by reallocating delegates or “suspending the rules”) then that party has to reimburse each state affected for the cost of the primary election? If it is a “faithless delegate” who is to blame, assess the cost to he/she/them.


About Myiq2xu

I was born and raised in a different country - America. I don't know what this place is.
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7 Responses to Another good idea that will never happen

  1. gram cracker says:

    “Make em pay” sounds like a great idea! Not likely to happen but like the thought.

    Newty is also not on the Feb. 7 Missouri primary. Missouri’s primary is non-binding; it is followed a month later by caucuses where Missourians pick their convention delegates. WTF!!! Then why have a primary?

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/post/gingrich-i-didnt-want-to-qualify-for-missouri-ballot/2011/12/05/gIQAD207WO_blog.html

    • Maybe Newt noticed and thought, why get on the ballot if it is meaningless.

      • gram cracker says:

        Yep, that is exactly how he is spinning his lack of campaign organization.

        “We have never participated in beauty contests,” Gingrich said when asked about his failure to qualify for the ballot. “We didn’t participate in Ames [the Iowa straw poll], we didn’t participate in P5 [a Florida straw poll].”

  2. yttik says:

    Primaries are expensive. Washington has actually cancelled ours due to budget cuts. To tell you the truth, I don’t even know what the point was. The two parties can completely ignore the results. Here in Wa we’ve always had a primary until this year, but the Dems have always completely ignored the results. They choose delegates from caucuses only. The Republicans would count the election as half a vote and choose the rest from their caucuses. So for years we’ve been running a primary that gives people the illusion of having a say in who the candidates are going to be, but that in reality has nothing to do with who the nominees are going to be. On the Dem side, the nominee was chosen before the primary election votes even happened.

  3. Love that idea. That’s so common sense and reasonable that I can see it catching fire.

    And you know, since the parties are private and don’t even follow basic democratic principles in their voting, why on earth is public money used for their activities. That should be stopped in general anyway. We can’t afford it, and it’s just wrong.

  4. DandyTiger says:

    Go VA! I knew we were good for something. 🙂

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