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primary,in the United States, a preliminary election in which the candidate of a party is nominated directly by the voters. The establishment of the primary system resulted from the demand to eliminate the abuses of nomination by party conventions, which were often open to manipulation by party bosses. The primary was first used in local elections—as early as 1842 in Crawford co., Pa. The Wisconsin legislature established the first primary for the nomination of statewide candidates in 1903. In 1917 all but four states had enacted primary laws, which varied widely from state to state in scope and detail of administration. Many states extend the primary principle to the presidential level, providing for an election in which voters register their preference among presidential candidates and select state delegates to nominating conventions of the national parties. A primary may be nonpartisan, i.e., the candidates are not listed by party affiliation (usually in local and judicial elections); open, i.e., any registered voter may vote for a candidate for office from any party; or closed, i.e., only registered party members may vote for the party's slate of candidates. In a blanket primary the candidates of all the parties are listed on a single ballot; nonbinding primaries, sometimes called "beauty contests," do not require the party to adhere to the result of the primary in choosing its candidates. In states and localities where one party is dominant the primary, rather than the regular election, is crucial in the selection of officeholders. Critics of the primary system point to the great cost of primary campaigns and to the often unrepresentative nature of the comparatively few voters who thus select the party candidates.
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primaryThe celestial body that is nearest to the center of mass of a system of orbiting bodies. The other members, called secondaries, appear to orbit the primary, which is the most massive in the system. In fact all members move round the common center of mass. The Earth is the Moon's primary. See also visual binary.
Collins Dictionary of Astronomy © Market House Books Ltd, 2006
A planet with reference to its satellites, or the sun with reference to its planets.
The brighter star of a double star system.
A term used to distinguish basic compounds from similar or isomeric forms; in organic compounds, for example, RCH2OH is a primary alcohol, R1R2CHOH is a secondary alcohol, and R1R2R3COH is a tertiary alcohol; in inorganic compounds, for example, NaH2PO4 is primary sodium phosphate, Na2HPO4 is the secondary form, and Na3PO4 is the tertiary form.
One of the high-voltage conductors of a power distribution system.
A young shoreline whose features are produced chiefly by nonmarine agencies.
Of a mineral deposit, unaffected by supergene enrichment.
Of a metal, obtained directly from ore.
Of or pertaining to quills on the distal joint of a bird wing.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. of or relating to the education of children up to the age of 11
2. (of the flight feathers of a bird's wing) growing from the manus
a. being the part of an electric circuit, such as a transformer or induction coil, in which a changing current induces a current in a neighbouring circuit
b. (of a current) flowing in such a circuit
a. (of a product) consisting of a natural raw material; unmanufactured
b. (of production or industry) involving the extraction or winning of such products. Agriculture, fishing, forestry, hunting, and mining are primary industries
a. (of an organic compound) having a functional group attached to a carbon atom that is attached to at least two hydrogen atoms
b. (of an amine) having only one organic group attached to the nitrogen atom; containing the group NH2 CHECK FORMULA
c. (of a salt) derived from a tribasic acid by replacement of one acidic hydrogen atom with a metal atom or electropositive group
6. Geology relating to magmas that have not experienced fractional crystallization or crystal contamination
7. in the US
a. a preliminary election in which the voters of a state or region choose a party's convention delegates, nominees for office, etc.
b. a local meeting of voters registered with one party to nominate candidates, select convention delegates, etc.
8. See primary colour
9. any of the flight feathers growing from the manus of a bird's wing
10. a primary coil, winding, inductance, or current in an electric circuit
11. Astronomy a celestial body around which one or more specified secondary bodies orbit
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005