Eliminate Party Primaries for Local Offices in Mississippi

Steve Rankin (Free Citizen), third party advocate and one of the country’s leading experts on state party primary structures, responded to columnist Bill Minor in the Jackson Mississippi Clarion Ledger from last week “Maybe Miss. is ready to install open primary system,” June 18) with a letter in which Rankin calls for nonpartisan elections at the county level.

Since the Legislature refuses to make this change, we citizens will have to do it through a ballot initiative. Why do we need party primaries for local offices anyway?

Rankin says more in his post from Feb. on Free Citizen “Greater Choice For Mississippi Voters

Nonpartisan elections are popularly called “open primaries” in Mississippi. In such an election, there are no party primaries, and all candidates, including independents, run in the same election. If no one gets 50-plus percent in the first round, the top two vote-getters, regardless of party, meet in a runoff.
The Voter Choice Plan would provide greater choice for our state’s voters by changing to nonpartisan local (county and municipal) elections.

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Author: Nancy Hanks

Provocateur/ pundit/ organizer Nancy Hanks is a long-time activist in the independent political movement who’s done it all: petitioning to put independent candidates on the ballot from New York to Texas and points east, west, north and south; fundraising for the independent think tank, the Committee for a Unified Independent Party (CUIP), and its online counterpart, IndependentVoting.org; running as an independent for New York City Council from Queens, New York City’s most diverse borough; serving as the current Treasurer of the Queens County Committee of the Independence Party of New York (of the IP NYC Organizations); conducting research for the Neo-Independent, a magazine that addresses the concerns of independent voters.