California's "primary envy"
After going to all the trouble of moving their primary up to February 5th and becoming part of the "Super-duper-Tuesday" insanity, pols out in California are upset that they don't seem to be getting the extra attention they think they deserve - or at least the attention that they thought such a move would bring.
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Voters here are frustrated that they aren't seeing much of the presidential candidates, despite an early Democratic primary aimed at making the state more politically prominent.
"Voters want to see candidates come out and press the flesh, visit them where they live, work and where they eat," said Roger Salazar, a spokesman for the state Democrats. "They really want as much attention as the folks in Iowa and New Hampshire are getting, and we'll see if that happens." ...
So what's the problem? Well, for starters, the state is too big. It's at lot easier to get out and "press the flesh", "visit them where they live , work, etc." when the state is small...and the universe of people that are likely to participate is equally small.
Why else? Because California (and those other whining big states) have the most expensive media markets in the country. Add that to the fact that California (at least on the Dem side) awards delegates by vote percentage and not winner-take-all, and you've got even less incentive to go there or spend big bucks on TV there. Especially when you could hopefully leverage that time and money to win in smaller, less expesive states.
On the plus side, the folks in the Golden state can take heart that they're still critical to the process in that it's always at or near the top in terms of where candidates raise their money. And, as well all know, (and John McCain laments), it is the mother's milk... It's just that the candidates don't spend it there.