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What are Primary elections and why have they been criticised?

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´╗┐What are Primary elections and why have they been criticised? A primary election is an election that narrows the field of candidates before the general election. Primary elections are one means by which a political party nominates candidates for the next general election. Primaries are common in the United States, where their origins are traced to the progressive movement to take the power of candidate nomination from party leaders to the people. Other methods of selecting candidates include caucuses, conventions, and nomination meetings. Primary elections are criticised for many reasons, one of the reasons being that they do not produce the candidate/s most likely to win the general election since only a small fraction of party members (usually hard-liners) ...read more.


Primary elections are also criticised as they are extremely expensive and (unless organized and paid for by the public purse, which they are in some cases) take funds away from the general election campaign. Barack Obama's fundraising broke previous records for presidential primary and general campaigns, and has changed expectations for future presidential elections. The campaign avoided using public campaign funds, raising all of its money privately from individual donors. By the general election the campaign committee raised more than $650 million for itself, and coordinated with both the Democratic National Committee (DNC) ...read more.


Another reason Primary elections are criticised are because they are seen to take the decision away from the most experienced, the office holders, and party leadership. Instead, ordinary party members with little or no experience of running for or holding public office get to decide. Finally Primary elections weaken the party structures by putting the focus on individual candidates rather than on the party manifesto or policies. Usually Primary elections promote the candidate running so much in the media that it is often forgotten the policies that the candidate is actually running for. ...read more.

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