Presidential Nominations

I.    Pre-1972 Methods

    A.   Conventions as Party Organization Tool

    B.    Events at the 1968 Democratic Convention

II.     Reforms

         1.   1968 - 1992)

         2.   Primary Scheduling

III.    Obtaining the Nomination:  (A Brief History)

    A.    Two Types of Presidential Primaries

    B.    Strategic Considerations

        1.    Getting Delegates

        2.    Frontloading:  Problems       

        3.    Super Tuesday

    C.    Preconvention Activities

        1.     Increasing Visibility

        2.     Broadening Issue Expertise

        3.     Courting Special Interests

        4.     Courting Media

        5.     Building Organizational Structures

        6.     Acquiring Resources

        7.     Running in Primaries

    D.    Nominating Conventions

        1.     Functions

            a.     Nominate Candidates

            b.     Establish Party Rules

            c.     Adopt Party Platform

            d.     Unify and Energize Party Faithful

            e.     Launch Fall Campaign

        2.     Delegates (2008:  Dems; Repls)

            a.      Allocations

            b.     Characteristics

            c.       Superdelegates

IV.    Criticisms of Present Method

     A.    Handicaps and Advantages Certain Candidates

    B.    Excessive Focus on Personality

    C.    Frontloaded

    D.    Invites "Homesteading"

    E.    Weakens Role of Party Leaders

    F.    Marginalizes Conventions

    G.     Excessively Lengthy

V.    Possible Reform  (reform proposals; Dem. action; Repl. Action)

    A.    Various Proposals (The American Plan)

    B.    Pre-Primary Conventions

    A.    Goal

    B.    Mechanics

Key Web Sites

The Green Papers

FEC Delegate Selection Rules

Brief History of Primary Elections

Types of Primaries

2008 Presidential Election:  Information