Statement From Open Primaries President John Opdycke on Bernie Sanders's Plans to Fight for Open Primaries
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Posted on June 15, 2016 at 1:57 PM

Statement From Open Primaries President John Opdycke on Bernie Sanders's Plans to Fight for Open Primaries at the Convention

Jeremy Gruber
Senior Vice President
[email protected]
(609) 610-1602

"Yesterday, Senator Bernie Sanders announced that he will be fighting for electoral reforms within the Democratic Party, including open primaries, in the run-up to the convention. 

I commend Bernie for his willingness to push the Democratic Party establishment to support open primaries. They would be wise to listen. The 2016 primary process had millions of Americans scratching their heads and saying: "why is the process run this way?" Over 26 million independents were barred from voting at all, and millions of Democrats and Republicans were subjected to arcane rules, regulations, and early registration deadlines. A recent AP/NORC poll showed that 70% of all Americans favor an open primary system that allows everyone to participate.

Bernie is leading a charge within the Democratic Party. Open Primaries is leading a national campaign to urge both parties to embrace open primaries at their conventions, and we are supporting local coalitions of Democrats, Republicans and independents that are challenging closed primaries at the state level. The primaries are funded by the taxpayers and administered by government agencies, and every American should be able to cast a ballot for the candidate of their choice, whether they are registered in a party or not.

Our immediate goal is to gather hundreds of thousands of signatures on a petition that we will deliver to the conventions. I hope everyone who believes that the current system is outdated and unfair will sign and circulate it among their friends and family."


Open Primaries is a national, nonprofit 501(c)(4) organization working to enact open and nonpartisan primary systems, counter efforts to impose closed primaries, educate voters, train and support spokespeople, and participate in the building of local, state and national open primaries coalitions. Open Primaries is a movement of diverse Americans who believe in a simple, yet radical idea: no American should be required to join a political party to exercise their right to vote.

Showing 5 reactions

commented 2016-06-17 08:42:16 -0400 · Flag
The primary elections are funded with taxpayer money. It is only right that all citizens be allowed to vote in them. The number of independent voters is growing. Open primaries allow independent voters to have a voice without having to declare for any one party. This allows everyone to participate in our democracy. Open primaries also reduces opportunity for election tampering and mistakes such as people’s party affiliation being listed wrong, missing party registration deadlines, and problems with NPP ballots. Here in VT we have an open primary, and it works very well. No downside to it as far as I can see.
commented 2016-06-16 16:27:56 -0400 · Flag
Completely… 1000% agree with this
commented 2016-06-16 14:17:38 -0400 · Flag
If the DNC comes into your state and you are a resident and pay taxes. Your taxes are going towards paying for the primary. If it’s a closed primary you are being prevented from participating in something you paid for. This is wrong, if either party wants to have a closed primary then that party needs to pay for it!!
commented 2016-06-16 13:30:06 -0400 · Flag
Elections should be about meeting the needs of the people, not the parties. If they don’t understand that, they will become irrelevant.
commented 2016-06-15 17:04:49 -0400 · Flag
awesome. he’s pushing through a message that resonates with many younger voters who just dont “get” closed primaries.