Letter: Why we hold primary elections

To the editor:

May 6 will be primary election day. Many people have misconceptions about primary elections since only Republicans and Democrats hold them in Indiana.  

The two-party system in America has its roots in the debate over the ratification of  the Constitution. Opinion was divided over the form the new American government should take: one with a strong central government or one with strong state governments. Federalists and Anti-Federalists argued their cases and voters lined up behind them. The promise of a Bill of Rights amended into the Constitution helped carry the day for ratification and the tradition of two political parties was established.   

Within the two major parties, sharp differences exist on the specifics of various national and local issues. This occasionally causes people to wonder what holds Republicans and Democrats together — what prevents fragmentation into innumerable splinter parties? The answer is that the two-party system relies on adherence to fundamental beliefs. Both parties have provided accommodation within their ranks for a wide diversity of views. This has been possible because both parties agree upon certain objectives, but disagree upon the means of reaching those goals.  

Primary elections are held to allow the two major parties to nominate candidates for the November general election. Therefore, only voters aligning themselves with one or the other party are allowed to vote in a primary election. Oftentimes, people will say they are a registered Republican or Democrat when they are not. People are registered voters. They declare their party affiliation when they ask to vote for a party’s candidates in a primary election.  

The Dubois County Republican Party welcomes voters to participate in the Republican primary. We have several important contests between qualified candidates who have different perspectives and priorities. We invite you to help us choose who will represent the Republican Party in November.  

—Don Hayes, chairman
Dubois County Republican Party




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