Sometimes party primaries take a financial and public relations toll on members of the same party. Political campaigns have become so negative and so hostile. The goal of this type of primary is to reduce hyper-partisanship and get candidates to pay more attention to general election voters. This should encourage candidates to focus less on their base. Ideally it would make elections less dysfunctional and less polarizing.
California's "top two" primary system is a fantastic idea. It lumps all of the candidates together and the top two vote-getters in the primary face off against each other during the general election. That way, candidates have to appeal to the masses and not just their own party in two elections, not just one. Plus, this system gives smaller parties such as Libertarian, Green and Constitution Party members a chance to win.
The "top two" structure of California's primary is a great idea. If one candidate from either the Democrats or Republicans drops out, it gives a minority party a chance to make waves in the general election. A minority candidate from the Libertarians or Constitutionalists can stand to take on one of the mainstream candidates rather than focus on his or her own party in order to get noticed. California's proposal for a top two system should be implemented nationwide as more candidates can get more face time for voters in an already crowded political system.
New ideas usually take a while to settle in and get adjust to where they fit everyone's needs well enough. Right now it is not at its best or close to perfection, but the idea itself is off to a good start. I think it is possible for it to become great.
I do not believe that California's "Top Two" primary is a good idea. If anything, American and California, need more players. We need more people to voice their opinions and run for seats in Congress federally and on a state level. We need fresh faces, not two people who have been playing the game for years.