Guest Editorial: Crossover voting

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Many of you are old enough to recall that in Alabama's primary election of 1986, Charlie Graddick faced Bill Baxley in a runoff for the democratic nomination for governor.  When Graddick encouraged republicans to crossover and vote for him in the democratic runoff… and won by a few thousand votes… the Democratic party enforced their rule against crossover voting by giving the nomination to Baxley instead.

In the November general election, perhaps out of frustration, the people elected a virtually unknown Guy Hunt, as Alabama's first Republican governor since reconstruction.

24 years later, the Democratic Party still has a rule against crossover voting, and the Republican party still does not.  Both parties are separate political non-profit organizations and can rule as they wish.  But this time it's the Republicans with the runoff for governor.

Although we are unlikely to relive the bizarre election of 1986, crossover voting in the runoff could impact any race in November, including the governor's race.

Whether you believe crossover voting is fair play or not,  a phrase you don't hear much in politics, one thing is certain… there are many important primary races, statewide and local, that will be decided next week in both party's runoffs, Republican and Democrat, and you can't vote in both.