People walk past a voting station February 5, 2008 on 'Super Tuesday' in New York City. (PHOTO CREDIT: AP)
FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
Today's Super Tuesday primary contests are of historic proportions. It's the biggest primary day ever, with 44 presidential nominating contests in 24 states and more than 2,700 delegates up for grabs. This represents more than 40% of the total Democratic and Republican delegates.
It's also probably the closest we've ever come to a national primary in this country. So why don't we go all the way? There are plenty of arguments to be made for allowing all 50 states to cast their primary votes at once.
The system as it stands now certainly has plenty of flaws: Candidates spend lots of time and money in the early states like Iowa, New Hampshire, even South Carolina. Many voters in those states get to meet the candidates up-close in their homes, churches, diners, schools.
These voters then narrow down the playing field for the rest of us. Consider this: over the summer, there were at least 18 candidates running in both parties. Now, there are essentially two major candidates on either side to choose from. That's a pretty dramatic reduction in choices based on voters in just a handful of states.
Also, we saw many states move up the dates of their primaries this year to have more influence on the outcome. For the candidates, that has meant a significantly compressed amount of time to campaign in nearly half of the country. For most voters, it likely means the closest they'll get to the candidates are a few 30 second commercials.
Here’s my question to you: How would you change the U.S. presidential primary system?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Have a runoff election and do away with the conventions. One early national primary to narrow the field, and a late summer national primary to pick the candidate. Don't give me any of that 'elections are too expensive to have two.' Picking the leader of our nation is a more rational national expense than most of the pork Congress wastes our taxes on.
Martin from Michigan writes:
I would definitely make the voting system uniform for all the states. It's not fair to have some winner-take-all states and some proportional states. The two of them contradict each other, because while you have to work very hard to get some delegates in one proportional state, all your previous money and efforts are nearly wiped out if you lose a winner-take-all state. It's just not fair!
Start off with eliminating the reliance on ludicrously frivolous and arguably incompetent major political parties. Make it about the people, not about the people controlling the people. If we start electing smaller people from smaller parties we may find that they have some pretty big ideas.
I think superdelegates should be done away with. It seems undemocratic that an individual has as much power as a community. As of last night, Hillary was ahead of Barack due to the support of superdelegates, which seems to be representative of the wants of a select few, not of the public.
A national primary would be an excellent idea. However, we would lose a lot of drama and Americans love drama.