Both of them have been repudiated by a growing plurality of all voters, and a majority of Millennials.
Both of them are considered to be closed clubs by significant numbers of their own members.
Both of them have been hijacked by candidates who weren’t even party members until recently.
And both parties have just ignored the first two of those facts, which is largely what made the third one possible.
Volumes are being written about this mutual dilemma – now – but in some corners, including this one, it’s been a topic of discussion for some time.
Thanks in part to the whining and complaining by Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders about the rules of the game, the open primaries movement is currently enjoying a burst of enlightened interest. For example, no less a loyal party pol than Bob Shrum, who’s worked on a whole bunch of presidential campaigns, recently appeared on “With All Due Respect” and actually said the words in an affirmative sentence.
But here’s the problem: every one of the 50 states has the power to make its own rules for elections. And we are a nation full of people who ferociously defend the ideal of “states’ rights,” whether the issue is gun control, education, same-sex marriage or abortion, and defend it all the way to the Supreme Court. So unless and until ballot access in primary elections becomes a national cause with broad general support, things will not change, except for the worse.
Are we there yet?