Friday, March 23, 2007

The World Needs More Canada


Why I like the de facto national primary

There's some level of nostalgia over the notion of a long, drawn out primary process in which Iowa and New Hampshire kick things off. This is supposed to help the Jimmy Carter-type underdogs "build momentum" and give voters a chance to "deliberate" over their decisions.

In reality, of course, we had a system in which two non-representative states (IA and NH) decided our nominee last time, and they were gunning for the same "right" this time around.
Of course, the Liberal Party had the rough equivalent of a national primary last time around, and not only did it produce more interesting politics, it turned the underdog candidate in to the leader of the opposition.

Underdogs are favoured when the front-runners are divisive, regardless of the political structure. This year, Hillary/Barack threatens to be divisive and nasty -- especially with the Clinton team trying to muddy the waters on her Iraq vote -- so we'll have to see if Edwards can capitalize on that.

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