A Simple Way To Reform The Primary Process For Better Results

Daniel Deceuster
4 min readNov 14, 2019

In case you’ve been living under a rock, there’s a pretty big primary election underway for the 2020 general election. The Democrats have an enormous field of candidates, while the GOP has only a few and looks well on its way to nominating Trump for re-election (impeachment results pending).

This is actually a flip from the 2016 election when there was no incumbent and both parties had nominating processes. The Democrats had only a few candidates while the Republicans had the large field.

Whether you’re talking about this election, last election or pretty much any presidential election, something has been consistent about them all- a horrible primary process.

If you’re unfamiliar with it, Iowa kicks things off. They do this every year. They have since 1972 in fact, and the reason is…well, there’s not good reason, really. They had a long caucus process that was drawn out and needed to begin earlier than other states. That’s the rationale. Why are they still first? Because tradition.

It’s not fair. It’s not sane. And it isn’t helping our elections. There’s a much better way in fact, but no one is talking about it.

One reason candidates like the schedule is so that they don’t have to campaign all across the country. Even a small campaign with little funding can get off the ground in Iowa or New Hampshire, the second state to vote in the primaries. That makes some sense. If we all voted at once, how could any candidate get all over the place to campaign with so little fund raising compared to a general election?

The Solution

Rather than a drawn out primary season and an election of attrition, we should overhaul the nominating process. And here’s the best way to do it: hold primary elections by time zone.

The first Tuesday of March, the first primary is held and all the states in that time zone vote together. The first Tuesday of April, the next time zone votes. And so on through May and June, so that the process concludes just a bit earlier than it currently does.

How does this improve?

First off, you alternate the order in which the time zones vote. Your time zone would go first once every four elections. That’s reasonable. That means you actually see candidates campaigning every once in a while. That gives candidates time to focus on the first time zone for a…

Daniel Deceuster

Digital Marketing expert, entrepreneur, executive, data analyst, angel investor, mentor, recreational musician, family man & cancer survivor