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Examiner
A blog 'for independent minds'
A call for open primaries
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Opinion page editor Rick Holmes and other writers blog about national politics and issues. Holmes & Co. is a Blog for Independent Minds, a place for a free-flowing discussion of policy, news and opinion. This blog is the online cousin of the Opinion ...
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Opinion page editor Rick Holmes and other writers blog about national politics and issues. Holmes & Co. is a Blog for Independent Minds, a place for a free-flowing discussion of policy, news and opinion. This blog is the online cousin of the Opinion section of the MetroWest Daily News in Framingham, Mass. As such, our focus starts there and spreads to include Massachusetts, the nation and the world. Since successful blogs create communities of readers and writers, we hope the \x34& Co.\x34 will also come to include you.
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By Rick Holmes
Dec. 8, 2013 11:11 a.m.


With public disgust with Congress at an all-time high, you’d think people would be paying attention to Tuesday’s election for the next rep from the Mass. 5th District, Ed Markey’s old seat.  But election official see no excitement: Framingham Town Clerk Valerie Mulvey is worried turnout may not hit double-figures.
As I argue in my column today, the problem isn’t just voter fatigue:

Massachusetts is a one-party state. The Democratic Party uses its power to keep it that way and the Republican Party can’t do anything about it.
As a result, voters are deprived of real choices and competitive races. Democrats don’t challenge other Democrats unless there’s an open seat. When there is a fight for the Democratic nomination, Republicans and independents are left out of the election that counts, and moderate Democrats are at a disadvantage in campaigns aimed at activists. Most of the time, Republicans don’t stand a chance in the general election, which discourages good candidates from making the attempt.

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