A dummy candidate can serve to direct preferences to other candidates in order to increase the serious candidate's share of the vote, or to take advantage of benefits afforded political candidates (such as advertising or campaign financing). The term can also refer to a candidate who stands under a similar name as a more established candidate so as to damage the other genuine candidate.
Dummy candidates can also result from candidates withdrawing from a particular race, but being unable to pull their name off the ballot, remaining listed as a choice.
- See, for instance, Randall Terry's dummy candidacy for the Democratic Party presidential primaries, 2012, primarily as an attempt to force stations to air a graphic advertisement during the Super Bowl.
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