Until the rise of Donald J Trump (R) the fear of others knowing how one votes was a minor consideration. But now, when we regularly hear the vitriol and lies spouted from the podium of the President the fear factor becomes far more real.
First off, the purpose of a primary should be clear at the onset. It is for those of a particular political affiliation to come together and express their collective sentiment in this case on a Presidential nominee. Also, we know firsthand of people who work in nonpartisan positions who will not be voting in this primary process due to potential conflicts with their positions. In Minnesota, the Primaries belong to the political parties.
Now, there is one interesting facet underway, not only will a political party get the information on participants in their own party, but also on the other three political parties. The problem is in this election without there being a contest on the Republican side, because Trump is the sole candidate and as discussed prior the other two parties have no contest either everyone will likely be participating in the DFL Primary.
In 1992, when Minnesota held its first Presidential Primary the voter lists for the political parties became far more robust. Now, with the return of the Presidential Primary, the political parties will once again have better lists, but these lists are not the entirety of the electorate. Yes, people will need to declare which ballot they select in order to cast a vote for a candidate on that ballot, but in the case of the newly created Grassroot Cannabis Party and Legal Marijuana Now parties, who lack a viable Presidential candidate option data on these voters will be suspect.
In 1998, we know for a fact the Jesse Ventura (Reform) candidacy was developed through a strategy developed by Ed Gross a great vote counter in DFL Party circles. Gross said he would not target DFLers with his work but rather all of the other voters, which proceeded to succeed.
Knowing who is with you as well as who is not are important factors in any election. If there were a contest on the Republican side as well as the DFL side then good data would be produced from this Primary Election data, but sadly it will only enhance the voter information for the Republican, Grassroot Cannabis and Legal Marijuana Now parties.