Published: Wednesday, May 14 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT
Insight from someone who has "been there and done that." Thanks for the
description of what actually happens in the caucus system. COUNT MY VOTE was
badly needed; the currently-imposed system needs to be followed if we all are to
have our votes count, and be counted.
If you had to run in a primary, then you would have had to spend $500,000 in
order to compete. Eighty dollars, would have barely gotten your name on the
ballot. When it come to money $70,000 is very low for a House of Representative
seat. Look at what other state's candidates are spending.
I've been a supporter of Count My Vote from the beginning. There is too
much "good ol boy" network in the party. With the current system we
don't get very good debates and learn where candidates stand on the issues.
Thank you for sharing the insiders perspective about running elections in this
Is this supposed to mean that if you're a "conservative and a
Republican"... you are supposed to support the CMV people?Because I'm both... and I don't.====I agree
every vote should count (and it already does). We don't need to ban
neighborhood caucus meetings to do that.We already have party
primaries... and General Elections... that's where every vote counts.And IF the person you want to vote for wasn't selected by one of
the major parties... just write them in!If they get enough votes...
they will win! Your vote counts!====You don't
have to do away with the opportunities we have to meet with our neighbors to
discuss community issues, candidates, and party issues. You don't have to
do away with the opportunity for our delegates to learn more about the
candidates at Convention... for your vote to count.The Convention
doesn't prevent your vote from counting... you vote later... And you can
vote for absolutely any person you want to.That doesn't mean
any party has to support your person...
2bitsI am and I DOWe already have party primaries? Nope
– not if a candidate garners the necessary support at the convention. Why do you keep repeating this untruth?
This candidate was simply lazy. He had easy access to delegates if he had just
been willing to get off his duff and go meet them and talk to them - one-to-one
- at their homes. It takes time. But it can be done. And it pays big benefits.
And it doesn't cost much more than a few tanks of gas.
I have attended, as a delegate, many, many "Meet the Candidate" events.
I have NEVER seen a party official fire off a bunch of awkward questions. Most
meet the candidate events I have attended, are attended by anywhere from 2 to 30
delegates, and the questions are usually sincere attempts to probe the
candidate's position on various important issues.Mr
Hendengren's description of his experience is 180 degrees different than
anything I have ever experienced. I have met with both well-funded candidates
who are well-connected in political circles, and with poorly funded candidates
who have spent very little in the way of efforts to attract delegates to their
events. In the case of the latter, they usually are lucky to have 2-3 delegates
attend their events. I presume that this is because the delegates perceive that
they are not willing to campaign to win an election, and are therefore
unelectable.Whether we retain the Caucus system, or jettison it for
a pure primary as the CMV folks want, a candidate will have to spend significant
amounts of time, energy and money to attract votes. $80 and good intentions will
never win an election of any consequence.
lost in DC,I said we already have party primaries... and we do.
It's a fact. I can give you the dates. It's not an untruth.Candidates can run unopposed (we aren't going to put a gun to
anybody's head and force them to run so he has an opponent in the
primary)... and a candidate can have such overwhelming party support at
Convention that they are basically unopposed (by anybody with a viable chance).
But I have said I agree that should be a higher threshold.But that
doesn't prevent you from voting for ANYBODY you want!You can
write-in ANY name you want (in either election).Even when a
candidate runs unopposed, their name appears on the ballot (with
"unopposed" by the name). Which allows you to write in somebody else
if you want...In either case you can vote for your write-in
candidate.... and you vote will be counted...
His experience mimics my own. I was very off out by the caucus meeting that I
attended. Any ideas that didn't meet the groups were shut down immediately.
It was a farce. I think this letter writer expressed what over 100,000 Utah
Citizens expressed by signing the petition to do away with the tainted caucus
system. He had it right. There were two "plants" at our
caucus meeting that did fire off questions meant to intimidate. It was exactly
like he mentioned. Thanks for publishing a very honest letter about this
difficult and unrepresentative system.
Something to think about... IF you can't handle tough questions, in rapid
succession, from your own party... you probably aren't ready to face the
other party in the vicious debates and very hostile confrontations that would
face you down the road... had you succeeded in getting the party nomination.They did you, AND the party, a favor.====If you
can't handle that... you aren't ready for politics and a tough general
election campaign. So the other party would have won. It's
kinda the party's business to put forth a candidate that can win. So you have to prove you can handle pressure if they are going to bet on
you to win...Remember... when it's all said and done... to the
party, it's about their person winning. Party's
don't want to put candidates out there (and fund their campaigns) if they
know they are probably going to loose.Remember.. even if you
don't get the party nomination... if you're really that great a
candidate... you can still run your campaign. And you may still win!
It's been done before (Joe Lieberman is a good example).
2 bits,Bob Bennett had he run as an independent would have been
another example of what you speak of, which is if you are an establishment
candidate you can win with or without your party. It still doesn't address
the fact that conventions in one party states are king makers. I tend to agree
with you that parties should be able to nominate whomever they choose, but in
Utah and other one party states the problem is that to many people simply push R
or D. I would like a ballot that has no party affiliation and forces the people
to learn about their candidates.
He needs to refer to himself as a Neoconservative.
2bitsso when is the primary between Mia Love and the other guy who
opposed her at the convention? Not gonna happen.where was Bob
Bennett on the primary ballot between Lee and Bridgewater?wasn't on
it.how many of the general election races are on the GOP primary
ballot?very few.If you win a large enough margin at the
convention, where ONLY delegates vote, there is no primary for the rest of the
party. There is none. If you run unopposed, that race is NOT represented in any
primary. To repeatedly say there is repeats an untruth.to say we
have a primary is like saying people are eating when there is only enough for 4
and there are 2000000 to feed. yeah, a select few eat, but the rest are shut
lost,The primary where you got to vote for Bob Bennett happened November
2, 2010.Didn't say everybody would be on the ballot. But you
COULD have written him in then...It's not my fault you
didn't know this!But it doesn't make what I said an
"untruth". We already have primary elections. The one were you should
have voted for Bennett was November 2010.====If
you're really mad at candidates not facing a Primary (even though they do,
just unopposed)... you need to be WAY more mad at Democrats. 10 times more
Democrats run unopposed (in Utah).Jim Matheson (Democrat) ran
unopposed every time except the last election (look at his wikipedia page).In the past 2 Senate Races... EVERY REPUBLICAN Faced a Primary Race
(Hatch/Liljenquist) and (Lee/Bridgewater). But not their Democrat
challengers... Scott Howell emerged from convention as the Democrat Nominee (no
Primary). Sam Granato had to run a primary campaign... but that is rare for a
Democrat in Utah.So if you're really mad at somebody... it must
be Democrats!And I didn't say every candidate would be printed
on the ballot... just that we already have primary elections.
I was at the convention as a delegate. Mark Hedengren and some other guy spoke
as candidates, running for Congress from the 2nd district against the imcumbent
Jason Chaffetz. Even though I am in the 4th district, I tried to pay attention
to their speeches. It was very clear to me and almost everyone else present
that neither one was in any way, shape, or form ready for "prime time".
As others have said, the job of the Republican Party is to get candidates on the
ballot that are capable of winning their race (i.e. beating their opponents from
other parties). Maybe the little guys out there should get some experience in
politics before filing for a congressional or senatorial or gubernatorial race.
For instance, they could serve as a city councilor or mayor - sorta like Mia
Love did. Now there's a "little gal" that the caucus/convention
system helped. She ran against more established politicians (two State
representatives) but got the nomination at the convention.
I think the letter presented the situation accurately, but didn't mention
the farce every caucus meeting is. Caucuses, although nice in theory,
disenfranchise Utah voters. Now party bosses want to invalidate their agreement
to allow primaries. I'm weary of a few party bosses & cronies running
everything, not allowing most Utah citizens any voice or vote.Mike
Leavett supports Count My Vote. He was one of the most popular & influential
governors we've had. He was only 1 of 2 Utah governors elected for 3 terms.
Though popular with the electorate, Gov. Leavitt had fewer delegates at 1992
caucuses than his republican competitor, but the people chose him. Party bosses
tried to push him out again at his last election, but his popularity with the
people triumphed. Gov. Leavitt was elected in 1996 with the largest vote total
in state history. Since the governorship, he served as EPA Secretary and Health
& Human Services Secretary. Though reputedly an advisor to the Romney
campaign, Gov. Leavitt doesn't now have a political agenda that I know of.
I respect his support of Count My Vote to allow Utahns to participate in
candidate selection, while those supporting caucuses and eliminating primaries
clearly have political ambitions.
Thank you Mr Hedengren. That was revealing.
2bits,“The primary where you got to vote for Bob Bennett happened
November 2, 2010.”Sorry the process has you so confused.
11/2/10 was the GENERAL election, where the official is actually elected. The
PRIMARY election is where parties usually select their candidates, but often our
primaries have very few races represented because the caucus system allows only
delegates to select the party’s candidate. Only if a candidate fails to
garner enough support at the convention is there a primary.Not my
fault you did not know thisWhy do you keep saying unopposed
candidates face a primary? They do not. Sorry you are so confused. Unopposed
candidates emerge from the convention as the party’s nominee and have a
place on the GENERAL election ballot. There is NO PRIMARY for unopposed
candidates.Not my fault you did not know thisPlease,
inform yourself better concerning the process. Continued misstatements diminish
your credibility.When is Mia’s primary? There is
none as she garnered nearly 80% at the convention.There is a primary
6/24, but MOST of the candidates for the general election have already been
selected, effectively disenfranchising republican voters where those races are
Anyone who claims that the caucus system can't be bought and paid for is
sorely mistaken. Truth be told, it is no different than the CMV proposal from
the standpoint of the power of money...
Total sour grapes. Orrin Hatch won with very little money in 1976 because he
went out and worked his butt off. He way outworked Carlsen. It didn't
hurt to get Wilkinsen and Ronald Reagan to support him. But he just plain went
and met with almost every delegate.
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