Back in the day David Goldstein didn’t like the Top Two primary, though he probably still doesn’t:

Supporters of the top-two primary, like Sec. of State Sam Reed, keep arguing that it offers voters more choice. Well, in the 36th LD, the district highlighted in the article, voters will be given the choice this November between a progressive Democrat and a liberal Democrat.

That quotes makes an interesting contrast to today’s post from Goldstein on challenging sitting Seattle legislative Dems from the left:

The irony is, we all know there’s a fair share of deadwood in the Seattle delegation, along with a handful legislators who simply aren’t as progressive as their constituents on a number of important issues, such as pay day lending, the homebuyers bill of rights, tax restructuring, and more. Indeed, start this conversation at nearly any political gathering, and the same names keep popping up again and again, the usual suspects of Democratic incumbents who deserve a serious, well-financed primary challenge, and who just might not survive should they face one.

A primary challenge is one thing. In the old days of actual party-based primaries a well healed incumbent could slap down an insurgent in September, well before the actual public discussion ever got going. And, with the primary in August now, the debate is even shorter in duration.

Most Democrats from Seattle, once they got past the primary, were able to coast through to November with token opposition from a Republican or maybe a Green. But now, a serious progressive insurgent Dem could challenge a sitting moderate Democrat all the way until November, pushing the discussion harder and actually giving voters in liberal Seattle districts a real choice from within the party.

I’m surprised Goldstein hasn’t seen this utility of the Top Two and is still calling for “primary” challenges, when it is really unlikely that a challenging Dem to totally knock off a sitting legislator in August.