Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Nomination Process Broken?

This brief post by David Kurtz at TPM, which links to a larger post by Greg Sargent, which in turn links to an article in the New Yorker by Hendrik Hertzberg, is a disappointment.

If the system is malfunctioning or broken, why?

Until this year, I'd always been disappointed at how short the nomination processes of the two parties were. To this disappointment was added an academic as well as political junky-ish perplexity stemming from a recognition that nothing in the nomination process required that it be over after Iowa.

In the past, money, the front-loading of the primary/caucus calendar, as well as the media's intent on assigning the all important "momentum", or Big Mo, to one of the party's leading candidates, served to quickly winnow the fields.

In particular, the front-loading of the calendar, although driven partly by the initiatives of individual states, helped serve the national party's seeming desire to produce unamity and harmony as early and as painlessly as possible.

Obviously, to the extent quickness and unity are important goals, the process has failed terribly this year.

But competitive, elongated campaigns that increase political participation, by voting, contributing money, or other activities, particularly in states that aren't normally a focus of either party, and that ensure substantial vetting of the candidates aren't necessarily bad.

So what would you do? What changes do you think should be made, if any, for the next election cycle?

No comments: