A common refrain suppressing general election voter participation is that “aw, they’re all bums on the ballot, why should I care.”
I’d like to see primary campaigns stressing that “Primaries Count” and backing that up with graphic charts showing the typical anemic vote. My gut sense from political science is that people who bothered to vote primary are more likely to want to vote general election too, if the final candidate is halfway decent, or even better, the one they wanted in the primary.
Unfortunately people desperately cling to no chance candidates to the bitter end.
I started out supporting Michele Bachmann and then moved on to Cain before settling on Santorum because he was really the only one capable of beating Romney and Santorum is an actual conservative despite his imperfections.
In the end, Romney “won” by some 3000 votes in this state. Sadly, Michele Bachmann took at least that many votes herself and wasn’t even in the race. Other former candidates also took votes. If Romney had lost Michigan, it would have ended him.