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Consider the importance of invisible primaries in US Presidential elections.

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´╗┐Neema Daniel 13AXS Consider the importance of invisible primaries (10 marks) Invisible primaries are the period between the candidate declaring an intention to run for the presidency and the first contests of the primary season. This period is called ?invisible? because there is very little to see and it has no formal status. This event, part of the presidential election system, would never occur in the UK because the prime minister (the equivalent of the President) is selected by members of their own party rather than by ordinary voters. This process features candidates for each party ?testing the waters? for a position by visiting key states and through media exposure. Two party invisible primaries occur simultaneously when the office of presidency is vacant. Sometimes during incumbency a same party member will challenge their office but rarely is this frequent. ...read more.


In 2012 it was the Iowa straw poll that bolstered Michelle Bachmann?s campaign, and she was the first women to do so. Additionally the invisible primary period is important as it is an opportunity for candidates to fundraise for their campaign, which is most seriously needed to visit states, run TV campaigns and host fund raising dinners to bolster their for the front loaded primaries. Sometimes insufficient funding can impede a campaign. For instance Elizabeth Dole in 1999 ended her presidential bid. And even the wealth of money a candidate has may deter individuals to pursue candidacy, like Democrats Dick Gephardt and Bob Kerry. Arguably one of the reasons for Romney?s success in the nominations was because of his large war chest. ...read more.


However this is not a definite trend and sometimes there are exceptions to the rule. For example Howard Dean of Vermont in 2004 was in the lead of the IP but during a convention his scream resulted in media satire to damage his lead considerably. Additionally Hillary Clinton who was frontrunner in the 2008 primaries by 18% was beaten by Obama. Therefore not always is this true and one should remember that polls, and speeches do not constitute who wins the presidential nominations. Furthermore Antony Bennett has observed that Invisible primaries are not relevant at all, and that they are ?not so invisible?. He describes the Ames straw poll as carnival- like and that it they attract people not really interested in politics but really interested in the free food. Additionally the supporters of the candidates are not very representative of the people who vote in the Iowa caucus. ...read more.

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