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Two factors lie at the heart of today’s dysfunction

Most elections today are decided in the primary, the election generally with the lowest voter turnout. As a result, a small minority of voters decide the vast majority of elections. Candidates are forced to move further to partisan extremes to secure a win in the party primary, fueling political polarization and preventing constructive problem solving once elected.

Limited participation primaries

In our November elections, voters are only given the ability to express a single preference as they cast their vote. Many voters find this to be a choice between the lesser of two evils. Third-party and Independent candidates are seen as “spoilers”, allowing a candidate to win with less than 50% of the votes. With fewer candidates on the ballot, choice and competition are artificially minimized.

Narrow field general election

Politicians who stake out extreme positions and reject bipartisan governance. In other words: GRIDLOCK.

The result

Simply put, if an elected official acts in the broad public interest, they are likely to lose their job in a party primary.

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