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As a Democratic partisan, candidate selection and primary politics fascinates me—how to recruit and nominate the best candidates for office; whether to aim for the apparently strongest general election candidate, or an appealing outsider, or the most ideologically compatible; whether a vigorous primary is a good thing for democracy or a costly mess to be avoided. The calculus for picking the right candidate is complicated, includes many factors, and is subject to contentious argument and should often simply be put in the hands of the voters.

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