Argument: Open primaries can spur new, moderate coalitions

Issue Report: Open primaries


Jim Boren. “Why open primary is good.” Merced Sun Star. June 15th, 2010: “Here’s the real reason the major parties in California don’t like open primaries: They will lose power if politics become more moderate in the Golden State. They fear that lawmakers in the political middle will find compromises to our most difficult problems. That would mean that the political extremists on the left and the right will not be able to control the debate. Party opposition to open primaries goes back to money. The Republicans raise money by telling people on their mailing list that they need to send $100 to the party or the Democrats will push through tax increases. The Democrats raise money by telling its members to send money or the Republicans will close the public schools. How are they going to raise money if all they have to report to party members is the budget crisis has been solved with a bipartisan agreement to make cuts and raise revenue?”

Why open primaries? “Open primaries encourage candidates with a broad appeal, who favor pragmatic rather than partisan solutions. They allow for the development of new coalitions of voters and candidates.”