Today is the day of the Iowa Caucuses
, that first step taken by a political party
in nominating a candidate
for public office
. In this case, it is the Democratic Party
nominating a candidate for President
To me, the process sounds like fun. What happens is that party members meet at varied locations, sometimes private homes. Refreshments are shared, which means you might get to score some really nice cookies. The supporters of each candidate will gather in a specified location. Say the Dennis Kucinich fans go to the downstairs bedroom and stand together. If a candidate's supporters don't achieve significance, which is defined as 15% of the delegates at any location, then their votes aren't counted, and they may choose to go stand with another candidate, or join the undecided, In the case of minor candidates, as the aforementioned Congressman Kucinich, there may be some horse trading, so they agree that their supporters will go to another minor candidate, to assure that the votes don't go to the big boys: which in 2004 means Dick Gephardt, John Kerrey, Howard Dean and John Edwards. If a couple small fish can share and share alike, that can keep their candidacies alive.
An individual in Iowa has more power than his or her number because the caucuses come so early. Granted, everyone would despise the endless stream of campaign ads that must assail all Iowans. But NPR, Gene Wolfe and E2 shall pull me through, and allow me to keep my television in the off position.
But the back room politics would be fun. As I consider myself a Democrat I would want to be a part of the various meetings that lead up to the caucuses. I'd get to talk a lot of politics, and see how people felt, which would be fascinating. And it is even conceivable that I might actually get to spend some one-on-one time with a real presidential candidate.
I wish i could be a part of that. In Ohio, we have a primary and by the time we hold it the presidential nomination is almost always decided. Besides, primaries are boring. But the chance to stand in someone's living room or church and stand with people who want most of what i want might make for a really interesting experience.
i'm tired of getting recorded messages right before election day. I want to get out where the people are, and get schmoozed.