Closing It Down
Closing Tennessee's party primaries is a good idea, but should be done with great care:
Democrats can and have used the crossover vote as a means to impact Republican primary elections, especially in areas where they know that a Democrat cannot win. Republicans, conversely, have been known to do the same in parts of West Tennessee when a Republican couldn't be elected. I've consistently written against the practice, especially since I have never in my life voted in a Democratic primary. I am not a Democrat, so I have never believed that I should have a say in nominating candidates for a political party whose core principles I do not share and to which I have no intention of ever belonging. I do not believe that it is morally or ethically right for Democrats to vote in Republican primaries for the same reason. One Democrat here in town told me "if I'm going to have a say in who is elected around here, I have to vote in the Republican primary, otherwise I have no say." It is actually a compelling argument because of the integrity of the ballot, but it may also be the best argument for closed primaries to be had.
Labels: Conservatism, Democrats, Elections, Local politics, Political correctness, Republican Party, Tennessee politics