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Can someone explain how this caucus thing works?

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MountainLaurel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-06-08 08:46 PM
Original message
Can someone explain how this caucus thing works?
This is our first (and last) presidential election year in Maine, and I was hoping someone could explain how this process works. Today was the first time I heard that it was a caucus and not a primary (I've been caught up in personal issues.) Do I show up at the Dem caucus in my town, or can I go to any of them? What should I expect?
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asteroid2003QQ47 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-07-08 03:02 AM
Response to Original message
1. Hopefully...
the forthcoming explanantion will also include advice for
those living in unorganized territories.

Good question, MountainLaurel, thanks for posting it.
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MaineDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-07-08 08:15 AM
Response to Original message
2. There should be a caucus in your town
Edited on Mon Jan-07-08 08:16 AM by MaineDem
There's a list at the Maine Democrats' website of those already scheduled. http://mainedems.org/caucus08.aspx

In unorganized townships, you'll caucus with the town you vote with.

First of all, you'll check in (like when you vote) and be given a form to fill out which is the record of your caucus attendance.

A Chair and Secretary wil be elected for the caucus. Local candidates may speak and most caucsu locations will have nomination papers for candidates.

The caucus will elect town committee officers, ratify bylaws for the municipal committee, nominate people to be ballot clerks, and then get into the Presidential piece. People will discuss the candidates and the caucus Chair will then ask for the attendees to break off into selections. There's a formula based on the number of total people attending and how many people are standing for each candidate to determine if those groups will be entitled to delegates to the State COnvention. Unlike Iowa, there is no 15% viability at this point in Maine.

People then will have an opportunity to change candidates if they want and a second count is taken.

If a candidate group is entitled to delegates, the individual groups will then elect delegates and alternates.

Unlike Iowa, Maine allows absentee "voting". The form to request that is also at the Maine Dems website.
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MountainLaurel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-07-08 09:10 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. Thank you so much!
This is all very new to me.
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asteroid2003QQ47 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-11-08 10:36 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. Dem. Caucus Convener Training 1/13 at UMM
Washington County Democrats Newsletter
January 4, 2008
Democratic Caucuses Set for Sunday, Feb. 10
By: Daniel Swain, University of Maine at Machias

Democrats across Washington County will hold caucuses according to their municipalities on Sunday, February 10.

The Municipal Caucuses choose delegates to the Maine Democratic State Convention, which takes place on Saturday, May 31, in Augusta. The municipal delegates are allocated to presidential contenders in proportion to the percentage of the support each candidate receives at the Municipal Caucus.

The full list of scheduled caucuses for each municipality will be announced shortly. Those who have volunteered to serve as caucus conveners will attend a training in Machias on Sunday, January 13 at the University of Maine at Machias, beginning at 1PM, sponsored by the UMM College Democrats. Participants will also learn about the upcoming tour of Washington County by Rep. Tom Allen and Rep. Michael Michaud.

To take part in municipal caucuses, a person must be a registered Democrat or an unenrolled voter. Those currently registered as Republican or Green Party voters have until Saturday, January 26, to change their registration to Democrat or unenrolled through their municipal clerk.

Those who are currently not registered to vote at all may register at their municipal caucus as either Democrat or unenrolled.

More information on the Washington County Democratic Committee is available on the committee's Web site at www.mainedems-wcdc.org, or by calling Lucy Witt, 546-3023, or Jeremy Gabrielson, WCDC Chair, 255-6794

please contact Jeremy Gabrielson jeremygabrielson@hotmail.com at 255-7694 or Lucy Witt lucyw@gwi.net at 546-3023

http://www.mainedems-wcdc.org/NewsLetters.html
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asteroid2003QQ47 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-14-08 06:46 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. re: Dem. Caucus Convener Training 1/13 at UMM
Thirty five caucus conveners turned out for the training session in Machias at the University of Maine at Machias Sunday.
All shared the goal of facilitating the election of Democrats at every level of Government and enthusiasm ran very high.
A good time was had by all.

The UMM College Democrats deserve a huge vote of thanks for sponsoring a
very well run event.
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luckyleftyme2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-14-08 10:07 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. call tom allens office
Edited on Mon Jan-14-08 10:08 AM by luckyleftyme2
call tom allen's office or your town clerk they can put you on the right tract.
all you need to be is a registered voter .they can fill you in on the details.
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asteroid2003QQ47 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-14-08 10:28 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. on edit-re: Dem. Caucus Convener Training 1/13 at UMM
I forgot to add how lucky we were that no morons
showed up to cast us in an unfavorable light to the press.
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MaineDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-14-08 10:55 AM
Response to Reply #5
8. Glad to hear it went well.
And thanks for taking part!
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luckyleftyme2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-14-08 02:29 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. like i said

u can always tell a um faculty member but not much.
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luckyleftyme2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-14-08 02:33 PM
Response to Reply #9
10. and next year

they will be teaching real math at the machias campus; fractions!
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eShirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-19-08 12:56 PM
Response to Reply #2
14. Is the caucus open to independents?
Or just registered Democrats?

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MaineDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-19-08 02:03 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. Independents must register as Democrats to take part
That can be done just prior to the caucus while the town registrar is there.
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fight4my3sons Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 01:16 PM
Response to Original message
11. This might be a silly question, but do we bring our kids?
Or does one of us vote absentee and stay home with the kids while the other goes to the caucus? We don't have many volunteers to babysit for us with 3 yr old twins and a five year old, trust me we've tried.
Thanks!
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asteroid2003QQ47 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-16-08 01:35 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. Not at all silly.
At least 3 children (2 boys with mom and dad, 1 girl with mom) were at the UMM session (it's possible there were more that I missed seeing). They stayed the whole time and were very well behaved. I don't think any one objected to their presence and I know I didn't.
I think most adults (if they're Democrats, heh, heh) enjoy the presence of children.

On absentee voting, one should be aware that due to their not being present, any voting that takes place beyond the initial vote will not/obviously can not include them, so if at all possible plan to be there.
Have fun.
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fight4my3sons Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-17-08 09:19 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. Thank you.
We'll try to bring something to keep them busy. We live in a very small town so at least most everyone knows the boys :)
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