In his column on Wednesday, “Top two primary limits voices, leaves fewer choices,” Richard Davis argues that the “top two” will limit choices and shove aside the role of the major political parties. This argument misses the point.
The “top two” moves us closer to proportional representation whereby candidates more closely mirror the population of voters from their district. Why should we have one Republican and one Democrat in the general election (a 50/50 representation) if the actual demographic of voters is split 90/10? In a 90/10 situation with our new system, the majority of voters will probably nominate two candidates from their same party to go to the general election. Those two candidates will give the majority of voters a chance to choose among viewpoints representing different ends of their spectrum. That result is better than what we had before the top two system, where we had many districts running a candidate unopposed by any competition from within their party, and their demographic gives them a majority so the opposition simply puts up “straw man” candidates. Read the paper and look at how many candidates are running “unopposed” or win every year without even putting up a fight. The old system stifles competition and debate.
The focus should be on giving voters fair representation, not on justifying the role of the political parties. The top two system moves us a step in the right direction, but we can still do better.