Republicans must wait until NovemberI'm not a Republican so I can't say whether this was an attempt on the part of the state GOP to keep Democrats from crossing over and choosing Republican candidates for high office (how is Emmett Hanger doing these days, by the way?) or simply a cost-saving measure. But it's not as democratic ("small-d") as I'd like to see.
On June 9, Virginia Democrats will elect candidates to run for governor and lieutenant governor in November. Republicans, however, do not want their voters to have a say in those decisions.
When party leaders worry that the rank and file might not vote for the anointed candidate, they convene a state convention to select a nominee. Technically just about anyone may attend, but in practice, only dedicated insiders show up. The difference is a couple of thousand loyalists at a convention or 150,000 or more voters in a primary.
This year, Democrats went with a primary.
Republicans were less democratic (small-d) and went with a convention.
Pick your hackneyed metaphor. Primaries are the crucible that leaves only the candidate who burns brightest and longest. Primaries are a Petri dish in which candidates fight for survival like so many protozoa. Primaries are natural selection at work, the fittest candidate emerging victorious to confront the other party's nominee and any third-party upstarts.
Primaries give Virginians a chance to shape the general election and have a greater voice in Richmond. Granted, turnout is often minuscule, but it is still larger and a bit more diverse than attendance at a party convention. [link]
Again, I have no rooster in this fight. So do what you're going to do. It just seems that there's a principle at stake here, one that's being dumped on.