I truly do not understand the thinking that goes into which states get to hold hold their primaries first. I do know that if I were still a Michigan resident, I would be totally teed off at the candidates who withdrew their names from the state's primary ballot.
Who the hell is the DNC to tell the electorate when they can vote?
Who the hell are the people who decided that Iowa, should be the one and only state to go first on January 14th, followed by Nevada on the 19th, New Hampshire on the 22nd and South Carolina on the 29th.
They are slated to be followed by a host of states, including California on February 5th.
That means that the middlest, the southwest, the northeast and southeast, get to go first. What? The northwest is chopped liver? Why aren't Washington or Idaho among that select group?
I live in California and except for Hawaii, we've always gotten short shrift when it came to presidential voting.
First, we used to be one of the last states to have a primary. Second, our polls close three hours after the polls in the east. Until recently, all the networks projected winners long before our polls closed, forcing us to throw our hands in the air in frustration and disgust, because we felt we had no say in the decision as to who would lead the country.
So, California moved up its primary, but not far enough. If there's such a thing as a trend-setting state, we're it whether the trend is liked or not. We're the most populous state; if we were a country, we'd have the sixth largest economy in the world. By that logic, it follows that if any state should go first, it should be California.
To get around the time difference we could open and close our polls three hours earlier, but laid back left coasters would never go for that. Then there's always considering going on a 24-hour super Daylight Savings Time, but I don't think anyone would go to that either, and our body clocks would be even more screwed up than they are by regular Daylight Savings.
As it stands, Hillary Clinton is the only top-tier Democrat remaining on Michigan's Jan. 15 ballot as Barak Obama, John Edwards, Joe Biden and Bill Richardson pulled out. Even Dennis Kucinich tried to get his name off the ballot, but was told he didn't file his 'jump the ship' papers soon enough.
That leaves Hill on the ballot almost by her lonesome. As for Kucinich -- no matter how his loyal supporters are true blue to his cause -- he needs all the help he can get.
In an age of the Internet and television it's time for the idea of staggering the primaries to go the way of the dinosaur.
Staggering primaries might have served the people of the 19th and 20th centuries well, but in today's world of the Internet and television it's a non-starter.
Although I don't know if anyone has done a study on what percentage of the electorate actually comes out in person for an up close and personal look at the candidates, I'm sure they have. Whatever the percentage is, it's probably in single digits.
Nobody has to waste gas driving to see a candidate; likewise, the candidates don't have to pollute the skies with contrails to see the electorate. By the time we get to the primaries there will have been enough debates and TV ads to put voters in a who-should-I-vote-for? and I-wish-it-were-all-over stupor.
Does anyone really think that any of the candidates are going to say anything different in person from what they've said a hundred thousand times in newspaper and magazine articles, television and radio interviews, debates and ads?