Caucus 2008

We left early yesterday to make sure Janie’s right to caucus would be upheld. Upon our arrival, they asked for our precinct number. This was my first caucus, so I was unprepared for this sudden need to know things. I told the volunteer that I didn’t know our precinct number and he pointed to a map and said we could find it there. I located our general area with the corresponding precinct number and told another volunteer who directed us to an abyss of caucus-goers who were not our precinct kin. Several minutes of aimless wandering later, we found a man with our precinct number taped to his chest and he informed us that we had been “forgotten.” They didn’t have a place for us to meet or any idea how many delegates we’d get, etc.

We figured this would happen to us. It’s so typical. Janie began to feel that her right to caucus was being impeded.

We were offered refuge in a room for another precinct, and though they let us into their space, they didn’t share their chairs. We sat on two miniature green stools about 10 inches off the ground that were likely designed for a three year old and waited for others from our orphaned precinct. This other precinct did not respect Janie’s right to caucus. After several minutes, we remained alone, convinced that Janie and I were going to be left to caucus by ourselves.

Slowly, several other strays trickled in. I became suspicious about this orphaned precinct, so I left to re-check the map.

Our home is on the convergence zone of three precincts. It became unclear which was ours, because our street was the border, and there was no clear distinction of which we belonged to. I became convinced that we had signed up in the wrong precinct and left to tell Janie. We sheepishly packed up or belongings and went to scribble our names from the sign-in. As I was crossing us out, a gentleman suggested I not hog the sign-in sheets and pass the others around. I turned and pointed my pen at him, “Listen, Sir, I am crossing myself off because I don’t belong in this precinct no one recognizes. Don’t even talk to me, because you don’t count!”

We left to find our true precinct, the one where people matter. It was in a large cafeteria jammed with sweaty Democrats wearing Obama paraphernalia. Our precinct was smack in the middle and we were not willing to push our way into the steamy crowd, just to be swarmed by people supporting a candidate who holds a microphone with the tips of his fingers. Just then, they forced everyone to say the Pledge of Allegiance and we hightailed it out of there. No one puts Baby in a corner.

We left for home, denied our right to caucus. Those unorganized and unhelpful caucus volunteers should just wait until I tell my mother about this. She’ll raise hell because she is passionate about our rights as Americans, and she insists that the only thing more important than our God-given right to caucus is our God-given right to channels four, five and seven.

4 Comments

  1. February 10, 2008

    My caucus was eerily similar to yours. “Luckily” I found my precinct area early. Then I ended up being stuck all claustrophobic in the midst of a throng of supporters for a candidate other than my own. Oh joy. Our caucus did not happen as it was supposed to, our precinct captain could barely grasp the math it took to figure out how to assign the delegates, and by the time she did so I was the only supporter left for my candidate. So now I am a delegate.

    I’m also mailing in my ballot for the primary just because I can. I’m hoping that the results might sway some of the undecided super delegates.

  2. heathen
    February 10, 2008

    Pamela – I *might* have put my phone number on the original sign in – but O crossed it out!

    fairydogmother – congrats on being a delegate! I’ll be voting in the primary so I can have my say somewhere.

  3. LizzieLou
    February 10, 2008

    I too had an overcrowded and confusing caucus AND a guy leading our group that was doing really stupid math… like “this gives us a percent of 64.89472212.” Thanks for all those decimal places, dude! that makes it so much more official and scientific-like. Most of the people had left our group by the end as well.

    No one ever mentioned anything anywhere about needing our precinct number prior to getting in the door of the place. I grabbed our voter reg cards out of the family file before we left the house or I never would have known where to sign in.

    Hooray for Sweaty Democrats!

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