Optimal Primaries

43 Pages Posted: 17 Aug 2013

See all articles by Patrick Hummel

Patrick Hummel

Google Inc.

Richard Holden

University of New South Wales (UNSW)

Date Written: August 2013


We analyze a model of US presidential primary elections for a given party. There are two candidates, one of whom is a higher quality candidate. Voters reside in m different states and receive noisy private information about the identity of the superior candidate. States vote in some order, and this order is chosen by a social planner. We provide conditions under which the ordering of the states that maximizes the probability that the higher quality candidate is elected is for states to vote in order from smallest to largest populations and most accurate private information to least accurate private information.

Suggested Citation

Hummel, Patrick and Holden, Richard, Optimal Primaries (August 2013). NBER Working Paper No. w19340. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2311589

Patrick Hummel (Contact Author)

Google Inc. ( email )

1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Second Floor
Mountain View, CA 94043
United States

Richard Holden

University of New South Wales (UNSW) ( email )

High St
Sydney, NSW 2052

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