#NativeVote – Looks like a good time to think about primaries, democracy, and the way it ought to be

Next up.




Editing next video profile, Joe Pakootas. It was an interesting interview. We talked about his campaign, raising money, and what it might mean to have enough members for a true Native American caucus in Congress.

I am also thinking about primaries & democracy. The system is a mess. It’s not just this election but it goes back to layer of layer of missteps. I remember a friend who looked at the nominating process and said, “gee, the smoke filled rooms were more democratic than what we’ve got.” Some states are caucus, private affairs for those who show up. Some states are taxpayer-funded primaries. Some states are conventions. And some states are hybrids. Crazy. We had a great debate about this at the Seattle P-I when I lived in Washington state; the solution in that case was a top-two primary. That’s a system that party bosses really hate. But there ought to be a way to pick a president that works for voters — especially those who are independent, or even, Green or Libertarian.

Along those lines, today’s rhyme:

Both party rules are unfair/that’s why Ron Paul went nowhere/and Bill Bradley played against a stacked deck/So voters wonder: What the heck?

I am also updating the database of all Native candidates. Congress. State Legislatures. Would love to hear more about county commissions, city councils, Mayors.

(And a busy week on campus.) — Mark


ps. If you haven’t watched (or shared) the Denise Juneau profile, please do. I am so close to 10,000 views on FB.


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Mark Trahant

Mark Trahant is an independent journalist. He currently serves as the Charles R. Johnson Professor at the University of North Dakota.

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