The California Primary Election will be held in early February 2012, and will be effectively non-partisan for all Congressional (including Senatorial) elections under a new system which is diabolically unfair to anyone who might run trying to change the system—an outsider. It is simply surreal that the gap between Primary and General Election will be a whopping Nine Months—babies conceived on Primary Election Day could easily be born before the General Election—if the states move primary elections back much further, babies born on Primary election day may well be able to VOTE in the General election….but I digress. The real problem is that any candidate hoping to upset an incumbent must start his electoral campaign—well, just about NOW (May 1, 2011). He or she must also be prepared for effectively TWO long statewide campaigns, addressing all sectors of society. The net effect will favor the dull, rich, establishment norm, the tweedle dums and tweedle dees of Golden State Politics. The New Yorker Magazine last year had a cartoon of two women eying a well-dressed middle-aged fellow at a party, one was leaning over saying to the other—“now he’s rich—not ‘run for office’ rich or anything, but rich…” Dianne Feinstein, of course, is said to be at least the fifth richest United States senator with a net worth of between 43 and 99 million dollars. Given that the United States Supreme Court has said that people can spend whatever they want on campaigns….. The challenge to any statewide candidate to get on the ballot will be enormous—the two top candidates could both be democrats or republicans, or (more likely) both could be extremely rich pro-business lobbyists-sycophants with the fattest campaign budgets. So the June 8, 2010 Primary rammed another stake in the heart of real popular democracy in the Bear Flag Republic, and the United States in general…. but if we give up on California we may as well give up on the United States, and if we give up on the United States, then we may as well give up on the world—there will be no freedom left ANYWHERE…. Still, the quixotic nature of any newcomer’s quest for office can only be too apparent. S/he’d better know magic…. Of course, in politics, the only “magic” that ever works is REALLY EXPENSIVE magic of brain twisting advertising…. Perhaps the Courts will allow Third-Party or Independent Candidates on the General Election—but how will the Third-Parties choose their candidates?
But here now are the new rules from the California Secretary of State’s Website—which I am happy to say is NOT currently presided over by any ex-girlfriend of mine…..
Top Two Candidates Open Primary Act and Voter-Nominated Offices
On June 8, 2010, California voters approved Proposition 14, which created the Top Two Candidates Open Primary Act.
Except for the office of U.S. President and county central committee offices, offices that used to be known as “partisan offices” (e.g., state constitutional offices, U.S. Congress, and state legislative offices) are now known as “voter-nominated” offices.
Under the Top Two Candidates Open Primary Act, all candidates running in a primary election, regardless of their party preference, will appear on a single Primary Election ballot and voters can vote for any candidate. The top two overall vote-getters – not the top vote-getter from each qualified party and anyone using the independent nomination process – will move on to the General Election.
Candidates for voter-nominated office can choose whether to list their party preference on the Primary and General Election ballots. Political parties can no longer formally nominate candidates for voter-nominated offices, so a candidate who finishes in the top two at the Primary Election and advances to the General Election is not the official nominee of any party for the office.