I’m writing in response to a letter regarding open primaries (“Mainers support open primaries,” June 9).

The letter writer says that 80% of Mainers want independents to vote in party primaries, according to polls. These must be the same polls stating Hillary Clinton would win in a landslide. Further, she says that 35% of people don’t have a say in who is on a ballot because they don’t want to affiliate with a party. But if we allow open primaries, those same people have essentially joined the party which they otherwise supposedly want nothing to do with. Bonus: They could get to do this with multiple parties. I would say, “Sorry, can’t have it both ways!” but in this case, “You can’t have it three or four ways!”

I agree with her that participation key for healthy democracy — except we live in a representative republic.

However, having open primaries is fraught with danger — a lifelong Green, Democrat, Republican, etc., could unenroll for the sole purpose of creating havoc in another party’s primary through voting for a less desired candidate.

It seems the writer wishes to turn the well-established process upside-down. Seem familiar?

It’s pretty simple, really. Want to participate? Join a party and work hard to get your preferred candidate nominated and then elected. If that nominee doesn’t get elected, well guess what? The people wanted the other person. The process shouldn’t be changed simply because a person’s preferred candidate lost.


Greg Paquet


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