For those who want primaries on the county levels, the two areas I voted for (state house and county commissioner) are going to be held as primaries for the two top candidates in late June. Taz Murray and Keven Stratton will have a runoff for the Utah House. Larry Ellertson (who I voted for) and Larry Grierson will have a runoff for the county commission. At the convention we heard from nearly all the candidates for the state convention next week. Credit for best food goes to Taz Murray for the breakfast burrito.
There were several rounds of voting before the last two were chosen for each office. It is an interesting philosophical decision to decide who to vote for. I had decided to vote for Steve White for county commissioner, but as I talked beforehand with several delegates, it was obvious that he would make the first round of voting. And so I decided that the first round I would vote for Dani Hartvigsen. Dani didn’t get a lot of votes the first round and was eliminated, as expected, but I hope my vote gave her a vote of thanks. I then voted for Steve White, who got booted out the second round, which surprised me since he clearly had the vast experience and was a budget hawk that would have benefitted the Utah House. So then the last two candidates were left standing and none received more than 60 percent. That means a primary in late June for you registered-Republican voters to decide.
I’m left to ponder: Is it a good strategy to vote for a candidate to force a primary so the public could vote? There is little danger in the first round that my top candidates for U.S. Senate will be eliminated since several voting steps will be required. (I’m glad it is electronic, which will be much faster than the county convention.) After the first vote, one can see where the general direction is headed and then the vote can be adjusted to help force a primary or to put someone over the top of 60 percent. I generally like the idea of a primary for the top two (though three would be even better, but that’s not the way it is run). Years ago it used to take 80 percent of the delegate vote to not force a primary. Then it went down to 70 percent. Now it is 60 percent, which I think is too low and created the Bob Bennett scenario of two years ago.
For U.S. Congress there are only two viable candidates. If I vote for Lynn Wardle, a distinguished scholar professor and presenter, could we force a primary with Jason Chaffetz and let the registered Republican voters decide? I do think people should at least listen to Lynn Wardle.
To be continued . . .