The Importance of Primary Elections

By Debbie Wuthnow

4 Reasons to Vote in Your Upcoming Primary Election

When I say the words “Election Day,” does the November General Election immediately come to mind?

If you’re like most voters, that term evokes visions of a Tuesday in November which finally concludes a months-long battle between the lesser of two evils. Your chosen candidate may not be an angel, but at least he’s better than “the other guy"!

What if there was another Election Day? What if there was an opportunity to not just vote against a bad candidate, but vote for a good one? There is such an Election Day, but it’s often overlooked by a majority of voters. It’s the primary election.

Primary vs. General Elections

In broad terms, the General Election is like the Super Bowl—the showdown between the final two football teams. In the General Election, the final two candidates (or more, in the case of third-party or independent candidates) in each race will “face off” to determine who will take office.

Before the Super Bowl, however, there must be playoff games to decide who can advance. The primary election is a bit like the playoffs—but with a lot more at stake. It narrows the field of candidates for each elected office before the General Election. Unfortunately, unlike in the Super Bowl, the best candidates aren’t necessarily the ones who advance to the General Election. The quality of candidates who make it onto the ballot in November will be determined by voters in the primary.

Unique Opportunities for You as a Voter

  1. Often, the winning candidate in November is actually determined back in the primary. Districts are drawn in such a way that over 80 percent of them strongly favor one party over the other (commonly referred to as gerrymandering). In those districts, whoever wins the dominant party’s primary will also likely win in the General Election against the other party’s candidate.
  2. The primary election is often your only chance to replace incumbents who may not be standing as strongly as you would like on the issues that matter most to YOU.
  3. Because turnout in the primaries is less than the general, your one vote carries greater weight! Fewer votes are needed to put a candidate over the top. 
  4. As mentioned above, the primary election affords a greater chance of finding a candidate who truly aligns with your values, not merely a candidate who is less bad than another. Your vote can be tailored to a candidate who thinks more like you do.

Our Impact in the Primary Election

Because differences between candidates aren’t as readily apparent in the primary as in the General Election, iVoterGuide’s research and ratings can be extremely valuable in helping voters determine the distinctions between candidates who all run under the same party banner.

For example, in one primary election, eighteen candidates running for one position were affiliated with the same party. However, after our research and evaluations, the political ideology ratings we assigned to the candidates ranged from Verified Conservative to Liberal. Informed voters can make the difference in sending a true conservative to the General Election.

Voting in the primary is imperative; being an informed voter is essential. In last year’s *Republican primaries, iVoterGuide provided information for contested federal races in all 50 states. In 31 of those states, we also provided information for statewide and state legislative races. 

Please share this article and encourage your friends and family to vote in your primary! If you are weary of settling in the General Election for candidates who won’t fight for your values, it’s time to take advantage of this other Election Day.


*Due to the vast number of primary candidates nationwide and limited resources, we currently only cover the Republican primary election for races that are partisan. Be assured that candidates in both parties will be researched and evaluated in the General Election.

Get Reminders

Whether it's important news, voting dates, or election reminders, iVoterGuide equips you to make an impact and a real difference in every election.
Join Now

See your voter guide

Spread the Word

You are the greatest influencer in politics today.
Share on social media.


What the Bible Says About: Government Spending
Memorial Day 2023
How Does Your State Legislature Work?
Importance of Special Elections
2023 School Board Elections
What the Bible Says About: Parental Rights
National Day of Prayer 2023
Can One Person Make a Difference?
Way Maker
The Speaker’s Battle: What Was Gained?
How Much Power Does the Speaker Have?
Timeless Advice from a Model President
How Did iVoterGuide Begin?
Is There A Wall of Separation Between Church and State?
Join Us in Actively Praying for 2023
The Second Most Important Thing…
Thank You for Your Feedback!
"The Government Shall be Upon His Shoulder"
The Conservative Current
Ranked Choices and Lost Voices
What is Ranked Choice Voting?
"Duty is Ours; Results are God’s"
Join me in Petitioning God on Behalf of Our Country
Ballot Measures: What Does That Mean?
Your Freedom is Under Attack
Decoding the Left's Lies
Why Vote?
Does One Vote Matter?
Saving the Constitution
The Elephant/Donkey in the Room
Do More Than Vote
Updated Candidate Questions for Today's Issues
Take Advantage of our Candidate Questionnaires
Understanding Candidate Profiles
Judicial Candidate Evaluations
Answered Prayers
The Importance of Primary Elections
Pray for Our Country
Tribute to Richard Ford
Tools to Help You Reach Your Neighbors
Protect Our Children
Free Church Outreach Materials
What Candidate Ratings Really Mean
Importance of Panelists
The Blessings of Religious Liberty
Lessons from a Day of Infamy
A Bold Response
The First Thanksgiving
Debunking the Left’s Arguments on Abortion
How Does Redistricting Affect You?
State Powers vs. Federal Powers
Life or Death Voting
Dobbs vs Jackson
The Importance of Worldview
Pray for the Supreme Court
Why Do We Do What We Do?
20 Years Ago
Take Courage
Separation of Powers
Immigration Issues and the Bible
Supreme Court Victories
When Justice Goes Packing
Who's Winning?
The Flag is Under Attack
Five Ways to Spot Fake "Facts"
What Is the Filibuster and How Does It Work?
Saving Our Kids From CSE
Presidential Power vs. The People
How to Contact Congress
School Board 101
Toward a Nation That is Good and Free
Political Parties: What Do They Stand For?
How and Why We Partner
Election Ripple Effect