> In the U.S. every voter registers for a party (or as an
> independent -- as I recall the rules vary considerably from

This is not correct.

> What?  You mean to say that you cannot vote in the US unless
> you register your "preference"?  Is that true?

No, it is not true. Many states do require you to register in order to 
vote in the primaries, though.

> And if it is, what's the point of it?

To make sure the Democrats in an area don't band together and elect a 
Republican candidate who can't possibly win the general election, and 
vice versa.

> Since your vote is secret, why register a preference?

In a primary, you may only vote within your registered party if you live 
in a state with such rules. Some states don't have any such rules, which 
I consider to be a mistake (the lack of such rules, I mean).

> As to voting or supporting a party: I'm not sure that I follow
> what Elder Jensen was saying.  What's the point of voting for a
> party if you don't accept their policies?

Obviously, I can't speak for Elder Jensen, but I suspect the general 
authorities are concerned about the lack of opposition to the 
Republicans in Utah. This lack of political balance allows the 
Republicans to bend the rules and control state politics without an 
effective counterbalance. Personally, I'm not sure that's so much worse 
than the perpetual gridlock you so often get with more "balanced" state 
legislatures. In any case, it is vastly preferable to having a bunch of 
Democrats in charge.


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