Presentation on theme: "Elections and voting Lesson 2 ‘The invisible primary’ Why is there an invisible primary? When does it happen? How does it work? How important is it?"— Presentation transcript:
Elections and voting Lesson 2 ‘The invisible primary’ Why is there an invisible primary? When does it happen? How does it work? How important is it?
The invisible primary allows voters to choose the presidential candidate and happens long before the actual election. It consists of many formalities: TV debates, dinners, visits, book launches, fundraisers and final announcements.
The invisible primary – the Jefferson – Jackson Dinner (Democrats)
The Ames Straw Poll (Republicans) What is the Ames Straw Poll? What is the definition of the Ames Straw Poll? The Ames Straw Poll, aka the Iowa Straw Poll, was started back in 1979. In the Iowa Straw Poll, Iowa Republicans converge on Iowa State University to cast their vote for their favored Republican nominee. The Iowa Straw Poll is held in election years when there isn’t an incumbent Republican president running for re-election. Definition of Ames Straw PollThe Iowa Straw Poll, as mentioned, is hosted by Iowa State University, and will take place on a Saturday in August of election years. The Iowa Straw Poll is a fund-raising dinner that benefits the Iowa Republican party. Potential Republican candidates will give short speeches and also set up booths at the event. Republican voters from Iowa will cast votes for their favored Republican candidates. Previous winners of the Ames Straw Poll have included George H.W. Bush and Pat Robertson. The Iowa Straw Poll is non-binding and has no official significance, but it is seen as an important early indicator of the strength of a candidate’s campaign. Three of the five past Iowa Straw Poll winners have gone on to win the Republican nomination for President.
FRONTLOADING The "Big Bang Theory" of Selecting Nominees The phenomenon of states moving their primary or caucus dates forward to try to increase their influence in the nominating process is not new, but it did reach extraordinary levels in 2000. On March 7, 2000 eleven states held their primary elections and Democrats caucused in additional states, representing 26.8% of total Republican delegates and 37.2% of pledged Democratic delegates (30.3% of total Democratic delegates). Frontloading is of concern for several reasons. First, the rapid succession of contests gives the frontrunner a distinct advantage in that only he or she is likely to be able to marshall the resources needed to effectively compete in a cluster of early contests. Alternatively, some observers have suggested that the short time- frame could create a situation where an outsider or longshot is able to pull a surprise showing in one or two early contests and then ride a wave of good press through the crush of primaries without receiving a thorough examination from media and voters. A frontloaded schedule likely contributes to depressed voter participation in later contests. Finally, presidential primaries do not occur in a vacuum but are often held in conjunction with state and local elections; moving the presidential primary can have downstream consequences. To address the frontloading problem, Republicans adopted a rule at their 1996 Convention to encourage state parties to hold their primaries later in the primary season [Rule No 31(a)(6)(i)-(iv)]. The rule provided for an incentive scheme, awarding additional delegates to states holding later contests. For example, states holding primaries towards the end of the season, between May 15 and June 20, received 10% more delegates.