Thursday, January 5, 2012

Nevada Presidential Caucus-January 21, 2012

Official photographic portrait of US President...Image via Wikipedia

"Hope is that thing inside us that insists, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that something better awaits us if we have the courage to reach for it and to work for it, and to fight for it."
Barack Obama

The Nevada Presidential Caucus is scheduled for January 21, 2012.  Some voters maybe unfamiliar with the caucus process, particularly if you are accustomed to a primary with private voting as I was coming from Chicago. Here's a quick primer I'll call Caucus 101.

A caucus is a meeting of local Nevadans of a political party to show support and select delegates to a convention for candidates running for office.  The caucus is the first step in Nevada's presidential nominating process and a simple gathering of neighbors to meet and discuss grassroots politics. Each political party is responsible for selecting its own presidential nominee.  President Barack Obama will be the 2012 Democratic nominee.

A caucus is not a primary election.  Caucus participants do not vote by pulling a lever of filling out a ballot. The caucus is the first step a Democrat needs to take in order to become a delegate to the national convention. Local Politics will be discussed at the caucus and participants will submit resolutions to the party to be considered by the platform committee at the county convention.

Any registered Democrat may attend the caucus.  17-year-olds who will be 18 by Election Day (November 6, 2012) and are registered to vote may attend the caucus. Participants may register to vote on the day of the caucus.

The Caucus is important because it sends a strong message that Barack Obama needs to be re-elected and allows voters to participate in the Democratic process. The Caucus tests the neighborhood team model, identifies new supporters, and ensures an organization that will be effective long-term, after President is re-elected.

My family participated in the 2008 Nevada Presidential Caucus and helped decide on the Democratic nominee.  I found myself serving as a delegate to the county and state convention.  Two other family members were selected as delegates also. It was a unique experience that I'll never forget.  I declined to serve as a delegate for the national convention due to personal commitments, but I reveled in the sight of a victorious Barack Obama at the national convention and in Grant Park, Chicago after his election. I felt that I had a small part in his success.
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