A prolonged primary helped Obama in 2008. It helped Democrats identify tens of thousands of new voters in battleground states such as Ohio and Pennsylvania. And it gave Dems a priceless opportunity to attack the incumbent party while casual voters were paying attention for once.
This past weekend, Republican presidential candidates held two debates. They had three hours of free airtime to attack Obama’s record. It was a good thing for conservatism and for the Republican party.
It’s easy to get swept away in the feeling that this nominating process has to end early. But really, why should it? At the end of February, the Republican National Committee will have awarded only 174 RNC delegates out of the 1,143 needed to lock up the nomination.
A long primary would allow Republicans to protect their nominee, grow the party, and avoid handing Obama an early target.
Let’s hope history repeats itself.
— Jordan Gehrke is a Republican strategist. He joined Sharron Angle’s campaign as deputy campaign manager following the primary in June 2010. He founded the 999 Fund, a super PAC dedicated to electing Herman Cain.