Tag Archives: Invisible Primary

Perry’s Presidential Aspirations?

Rick_Perry_by_Gage_Skidmore_8On Monday, Governor Rick Perry (R) of Texas announced that he would not be running for re-election to his state’s highest office in 2014.  Some have wondered if Perry has his sights set on the White House in 2016.   Many of those who enter into the Presidential fray, early, do so to win the “invisible primary“.  The invisible primary or the “money primary” does not involve any voting at the ballot box.  Candidates, however, who want to be considered as viable candidates must do well in the invisible primary.  The primary takes place in the  months and years before the first votes are cast.  In it, candidates try to woo financial backers into supporting their campaigns.  Those who fail to raise enough money tend to drop out of the Presidential campaign before the first vote is cast.  Do you believe that Perry’s announcement coincides with an attempt to get ahead in the “invisible primary”?

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The Power of the Invisible Primary

It is only 2013 and many Democratic and Republican Party leaders are already testing the waters for a Presidential run in 2016.  Many of those who enter into the Presidential fray will drop out before they even officially run.  The others, who do make it to the 2016 primaries and caucuses, can thank the “invisible primary” for their ability to compete in an electoral format.  The invisible primary or the “money primary” does not involve any voting at the ballot box.  Candidates, however, who want to be considered as viable candidates must do well in the invisible primary.

In the months and years before the first votes are cast, candidates try to woo financial backers into supporting their campaigns.  Monetary contributions separate potential candidates from pretenders.  With more financial backing, a candidate can make the early campaign rounds in states like Iowa and New Hampshire.  Those two states hold the first caucus and first primary respectively every Presidential election season.

The added campaign stops then increases the public’s awareness about that candidate.  The increased public awareness subsequently inflates the candidate’s poll numbers.  Positive polling results also separates the top-tier from the second-tier.  This increases the candidate’s chances on Election Day.

Paul Laxalt
Paul Laxalt

The invisible primary can also eliminate good candidates who may have great ideas, but lack the prowess to raise large amounts of money.  An example of this happening would be the failed 1988 Presidential run of US Senator Paul Laxalt (R-NV).  Considered to be an heir to the Ronald Reagan legacy, Laxalt, who was dubbed, “The First Friend”, entered his name into the Presidential race too late, and dropped his bid in 1987 due to a lackluster four months of fundraising.

What are your thoughts on the invisible primary? Do you see any positives or negatives with the invisible primary?

The Importance of the Invisible Primary

The invisible primary is the period when an individual files FEC (Federal Election Commission) paperwork to run for President and when the first voting primary takes place.  The earlier a candidate announces his/her candidacy, then the potential to raise a significant sum of money becomes greater.  The invisible primary is also a period where potential candidates gauge their level of popular support by not only how much money they raise but also by how many people can recognize their names.
The new year has just started, but already potential candidates for President have been mentioned in the press and in public on several occasions.  Among those being named are Vice-President Joe Biden (D), former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D), and US Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL).  All are recognizable and have the ability to raise money.  No one has announced this early in the game, but would you be surprised if someone did?  What are your thoughts?  When is it too early to announce yourself as a candidate for President?  On the other hand, when is it too late?