Opinion: Presidential primary disappointing

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

A ballot box in a rain garden seems appropriate for Puget Sound
photo by Steven H Robinson

By Diane Hettrick

After the first results were released on Tuesday evening, Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders are in as close a race as everyone predicted.

CandidateVoteVote %
Bernie Sanders335,49832.71%
Joseph R. Biden333,41432.51%

Disenfranchised are those of us who dutifully turned our ballots in early, before our candidates dropped out of the race.

CandidateVoteVote %
Elizabeth Warren
Michael Bloomberg
Pete Buttigieg
Amy Klobuchar
Tulsi Gabbard
Andrew Yang
Tom Steyer
Michael Bennet
Cory Booker
John Delaney
Deval Patrick

I'm really disappointed. I've waited for years for elections instead of caucuses and when it finally happened, the election will be decided only by the hard-core base of the leading candidates - and those who waited to vote.

So it isn't a measure of the electorate but a kind of hybrid.

Good thing the party wasn't depending on us to make the decision.

I can't help but wonder what the results would be if the rest of us had a chance to weigh in, especially with so many of the candidates endorsing Joe Biden.

There is one state that allows voters to "spoil" their ballot and vote again, but the bureaucrat in me cringes at what a mess that would be.

I'm very intrigued by ranked voting, where you vote for a first, second, and third candidate.

Interesting to see how well Michael Bloomberg did. Clearly his ads resonated with a lot of Washington voters. Michael Bennet did well, too, considering that he got in the race at the last minute.

I do like the early primary and having the candidates and pundits pay attention to Washington. I like the political ads. Every time I hear about candidate spending, I think - there's another boost for the media and the local economy.

King county results have the candidates in exactly the same order except the bottom two are switched.

The Republicans didn't allow other candidates on the ballot other than the incumbent president.

Here's the overview from the first returns:
  • Registered voters: 4,550,922
  • Ballots counted to date: 1,561,903
  • Voter turnout     34.32%
  • Estimated ballots on hand to be counted 300,046

Correction 3-11-20: I confused Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado with Gov. Steve Bullock of Montana. They were both briefly presidential candidates. Steve Bullock is going to run for the senate from Montana. It will still be an interesting race.


Doug March 11, 2020 at 8:38 AM  

"Good thing the party wasn't depending on us to make the decision." by your own admission, you voted early. That was your choice. You could have waited which seems would have been more prudent. No one's fault.

Anonymous,  March 12, 2020 at 9:43 AM  

Not sure why you considered it "dutiful" to vote early. It's commonplace for candidates to drop out after Super Tuesday.

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