The Senate race is interesting. Leaving aside the individuals and the personalities, this seems to me a better model, except that we have only one candidate in the middle. The two party candidates represent their respective poles. And, once again, we are in danger of a winner being chosen by a minority.

For statewide races, governor and the U.S. Congress, we should have a single open primary and select two candidates.

All independent and party-affiliated candidates would be on the primary ballot.

Each party could decide in its own way that it will work for one particular candidate, or not. Each person running independent could muster supporters.

The top two vote-getters in the primary would be the only two on the final ballot. No one could make it to the final ballot without running in the open primary. Incumbents who couldn’t manage to come in first or second would be out, but because of the dissatisfaction of the electorate, not from a well-organized coup by a faction of their own party.

This two-candidate system would give us candidates who appeal to the center rather than to a small segment of the population. Primary elections would take on a whole new dynamic.

Every voter would concentrate on the same potential flock. It’s unlikely that even a well-funded “liberal” or “conservative” block of voters could arrange for two victorious candidates.

We would need a way to replace a nominee who did not make it to the election, for whatever reason. This could be as simple as elevating the third-place finisher in the primary.

Once elected, these leaders represent us all. Let’s develop a system that gives us all a say in who makes it onto the ballot.

Jim Perkins


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