Is California's Top-Two Primary System Blocking Third-Party Candidates?

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 (Eva Hambach/AFP/Getty Images)

In the June election, for the first time, California used a top-two primary system for statewide offices. Under the system, the candidates receiving the most and second-most votes advance to the November general election -- regardless of party affiliation. While supporters say top-two helps promote more moderate candidates, others criticize the system for shutting out third-party contenders.


Eric McGhee, policy fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California and author of "Open Primaries," a report prepared for the PPIC about the possible impacts of Proposition 14

Kim Alexander, president and founder of the California Voter Foundation

Michael Feinstein, spokesperson for the Green Party of California and former city councilmember and mayor of Santa Monica

Chad Peace, president of IVC Media and legal strategist for the Independent Voter Project (IVP),, and managing editor of IVP