04 February 2008


Here we go a caucusing, a caucusing we go...

I will be at a caucus tomorrow, but sadly, unable to participate other then checking voters in because I can't afford the plane ticket back to Alaska to join in where I'm registered, which is ironically being held at my old workplace! So instead I'm calling Colorado voters and talking my Alaskan friends into going to theirs. I wish that so many candidates on both sides hadn't dropped out before Super Tuesday. I wish that more people in this country felt passionate about exercising their civil liberties. But all in all I think it's going to be an exciting night.

Edited to add: I did not vote. I wanted to and looked into voting absentee but Alaska has switched to caucusing and you cannot vote absentee for a caucus, only a primary. If I have not registered somewhere new by the time September rolls around I will definitely vote absentee in the actual election for Alaska.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the terms here are the definitions of a caucus and primary - some states have one, others the other. Some have a primary for everything other then the presidential race where they caucus.

US Election Caucus: where the members of a political party get together and must be physically present to vote. In addition this usually is lead by members of the party getting up and saying their thoughts prior to voting. The upside of this, to my mind, is that it is also a social event which I think makes some people turn out more. The downside, to my mind, is that your vote is not private and you are in the company of everyone you know and some people may feel peer pressure about their votes.

US Election Primary: also known as a nominating primary. This is where individuals go to a polling station and vote in a private booth for the candidate of their choice. Usually this is also limited to the party with which you are affiliated although in some states independents can now choose a party and vote in their primary.


  1. i think people are feeling pretty passionate this time around, i really do.

    we are treating today like superbowl sunday and the world series all rolled into one.

  2. I wish more people all over would be more passionate about protecting their liberties.

  3. heh. i totally baracked the vote this morning!

  4. Hey, We're even following with great attention here at the other end of the Earth (where it's compulsory to vote, by the way - you get a fine if you don't).

    Of course, we have to take an interest in what you do Over There, because it impacts on us so much.
    Good luck with it all - remember, you're voting for the future of the whole world, not just your own country.

  5. hey, does that mean you didn't vote? what about absentee ballots? i live abroad and am part of the democrats abroad and for the first time even we were able to vote in the primaries!!! we count as an extra state. really like your blog by the way!

  6. This article on the CBC claims that 15% of Canadians would give up their right to vote here if they could vote in the US election instead.
    A group of us were watching the results come in last night and commenting that the US result affects us almost as much as the outcome of our own federal elections. (In some areas of life anyway).

  7. I felt left out of the Super (Fat) Tuesday deal - no primary here. I wish there was a way to vote permanent absentee, so you wouldn't have to worry about where you will be on the big day. I know there are claims that the absentee vote is rife with fraud...

  8. jen, yes, more so then usual, but there is still a bit of apathy.

    but why, amen.

    liv, good for you for voting!

    parlance, oh I remember, I'm not sure the rest of my fellow country persons know it but I do.

    marti, welcome! thanks for stopping by and commenting. Unfortunately you can't vote absentee on a caucus. Sigh.

    cae, I have both citizenships and I have to say if I had the choice I'd rather it be the other way around even though this one will probably have a greater affect. Thanks for the link.

    qt, it is a hassle to vote absentee, isn't it? sorry you didn't get to participate.

  9. hey, is it really such a hassle to vote absentee? my brother is on holiday in thailand, just for 2 weeks, and was able to vote anyway! by the way, i wish canadians would vote in the us, am pretty sure it would be for the better good of all!

  10. marti, it's not that it is a hassle but that it is illegal to vote in a caucus if you are not physically present. ¥ou CANNOT vote absentee for a caucus while you can for a primary or the regular election. Believe, me, if there was any way I could have voted absentee I would have done it. Your brother must live somewhere where there is a primary option and thus was able to vote absentee.

  11. hey, sorry for being so insistent. i definitely believe you did everything possible :) and thanks for the info, another new thing learned today!

  12. marti, no problem! I should probably also clarify that I only know the rules for Alaska (where I'm registered) and Colorado (where I just volunteered) and it is possible that other states have somme allowence for absentee voting at caucuses. It's all rather confusing when the states each get to make their own rules! (And I finally figured out that you are connected with jonzie who used to comment here.)


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