New Hearing Date Set for Minor Party Challenge to Top-Two Open Primary

The Alameda County Superior Court will hold a hearing in Rubin v Bowen on August 28, 2012, at 9 a.m., in Oakland. The case, filed last year by the Peace & Freedom, Libertarian, and Alameda County Green Parties challenges the essence of the top-two system, on the grounds that it injures the voting rights of voters who wish to vote in November for minor party candidates.

The judge who has this case has already declined to issue injunctive relief, but he has permitted the plaintiffs to file an amended complaint, which was filed on May 10, 2012. Here is the state’s brief, trying to persuade the judge to dismiss the case.


  1. Jim Riley · · Reply

    The Top 2 Open Primary is not materially distinguishable from the electoral system that California has used to elect county officials for at least 100 years.

  2. Richard Winger · · Reply

    #1, your statement is not true. In California county non-partisan elections, the first round is an election. Someone can be elected. But under Prop. 14, the June event is not an election; no one can be elected at that time. All the June event is, is a ballot access barrier that determines which two individuals may run in the election itself.

    Also, in California county elections there are no party labels on the ballot.

  3. Jim Riley · · Reply

    #2 The fact that a candidate can be elected in June is immaterial to the fact that supporters of eliminated candidates are prevented from from voting in November.

    If there was a provision for majority election, are you saying that the lawsuit would be dropped?

    That candidates are able to express their political beliefs on the ballot is simply a matter of presentation.

    How does the California Top 2 Open primary differ from that used in Minneapolis until recently?

  4. Demo Rep · · Reply

    How soon before the END of ALL of the top 2 cases ???

    P.R. and nonpartisan App.V.

    NO more useless, moronic, costly primaries.

  5. Richard Winger · · Reply

    #3, polls consistently show that a strong majority of the country favors legalizing medical marijuana. When medical marijuana initiatives are on ballots, typically they win. But the federal government, controlled by the president and the congress, consistently keep marijuana classified as utterly prohibited. The prohibition is so severe, even research is hampered.

    Voters who care strongly about this issue might rationally want to vote in November for a party that would change that policy. If voters could vote for a minor party that was on the ballot for Congress in all districts of the nation, and those candidates polled even 5% nationwide, that would change policy. The major parties would start to bend on that issue. But, top-two makes that all impossible.

  6. Jim Riley · · Reply

    #5 Why not extend the initiative process to the federal government?

  7. Demo Rep · · Reply

    How many zillion tons of whatever being consumed – solid, liquid and gas

    — and the GDP keeps going on and on ???

    How many DEAD bodies in various regimes due to the EVIL chemical/drug wars ??? — with related MAJOR corruption in various govts in the U.S.A. — i.e. BRIBES, payoffs, etc.

  8. Demo Rep · · Reply

    # 6 Uniform definition of Elector-Voter in ALL of the U.S.A. — even D.C., territories, occupied colonies, etc.

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