Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Caucus Cluster

Well, after always having voted in primary elections during the nominating process for President, tonight I went to my first caucus. What a mess. And what an opportunity for election fraud.

The process went like this. You enter the building, find your name on your precinct's list of registered voters, and sign in on a separate sheet of paper. Once they read the rules, we broke out into our individual precincts (12 were meeting at the school where our caucus was held). Then we took a show of hands for a preliminary vote. Then we went through some confusion and finally took a final count of preferences for President. Then we elected delegates to the county convention twice, since nobody understood how it was to work. When the person I voted for to be a delegate won as the alternate and then proceeded to give her position to a woman who had only her own vote, I felt that wasn't right. I voted for the first woman, not the one she handed her position over to.

The problems are many with this system, and here are some of the reasons why I now believe a primary is better than a caucus:

1. There was no positive identification of voters. I could have claimed to be anyone whose name I saw on the list. They didn't check identification at all.

2. There is no secret ballot.

3. The problems and lack of understanding how the delegates were to be elected.

4. People who had to work or were out of town during the hours of the caucus were disenfranchised...a primary allows for absentee and mail in ballots; along with longer hours for polls to be open.

In other words, the caucus is a complete and utter cluster "you know what". While I respect politics beginning at the neighborhood grassroots level, this is not a good way to do it, in my most esteemed opinion.

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