10th CD Democrats to Hold Firehouse Primary

Saturday, January 23, 2010

I'm hearing that the 10th CD Democrats have decided to select their congressional nominee this year using a "firehouse primary." What on earth is a "firehouse primary," you ask? Here's an explanation.
In a firehouse primary, a limited number of voting locations are chosen within a legislative district and ballots are cast on one day within a set amount of time, usually shorter than a regularly scheduled election. The party that chooses a firehouse primary is also responsible for organizing, staffing and monitoring such an election.
So, it's not a full primary, which costs a lot more money but also involves a lot more people. It's also not a pure party convention, in which only delegates may vote. Currently, there are four candidates: Rich Anthony, who I endorsed back in December and who I am now consulting to; Dennis Findley; Julien Modica; and Jeff Barnett. I'll be curious to hear the 10th CD's reasoning, and also the date and location(s) of the "firehouse primary."

UPDATE: Apparently, the 10th CD committee considered a "firehouse primary" (aka, "unassembled caucus") to be a compromise between the regular primary (June 9th) and a convention. They also felt that a firehouse primary was more open than a convention, so more people can participate if they want to, and is less "inside baseball" than a convention, which could be viewed as the committee just picking the person they want. Finally, the committee views a "firehouse primary" as having the benefit of settling on a nominee a month earlier than the regular primary, so that the nominee has more time to get ready for the general election.