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Thursday, January 24, 2008

Washington State Matters

posted by on January 24 at 9:21 AM

The AP reports this morning:

(AP) - Don’t look to crown any presidential nominees on Super Tuesday. The race for delegates is so close in both parties that it is mathematically impossible for any candidate to lock up the nomination on Feb. 5, according to an Associated Press analysis of the states in play that day.

Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton leads the race for delegates to the Democratic National Convention this summer. She has 236, including separately chosen party and elected officials known as superdelegates, giving her a 100-delegate lead over Sen. Barack Obama.

There will be nearly 1,700 Democratic delegates at stake on Feb. 5, enough to put a candidate well on his or her way to the 2,025 needed to secure the nomination. But even if somehow either Clinton or Obama won every single one of those delegates, it wouldn’t be enough. And with two strong candidates, the delegates could be divided fairly evenly because the Democrats award their delegates proportionally - not winner-take- all.

Our caucus—97 delegates at stake— is on Saturday, February 9.

RSS icon Comments


Is it too late to register to vote?

Posted by Bellevue Ave | January 24, 2008 9:39 AM

No shit. But the primary/caucus race is no longer about obtaining delegates, it's about who the media is going to anoint as "inevitable". Bill Bradley and Howard Dean were very much mathematically viable long before Tim Russert decided they were finished. The longer we can keep his fat face confused, the better!

Posted by DOUG. | January 24, 2008 9:43 AM

news flash: the presidential nomination race is really close this year, and full of candidates.

Posted by kim | January 24, 2008 9:46 AM

Those superdelegates will flop if and when a leader emerges.

Posted by Fnarf | January 24, 2008 9:48 AM

Yes, that's at 1 pm on Sat. Feb. 9th.

The find-your-caucus button (on the link to State Dems site) now works. Good.

More news: Obama now up 42-30 in SC.

Posted by unPC | January 24, 2008 9:49 AM

Gah... I loathe the party oaths you have to sign to caucus or vote in the primary.

o Democratic Party: I declare that I consider myself to be a DEMOCRAT and I will not participate in the nomination process of any other political party for the 2008 Presidential election.

o Republican Party: I declare that I am a member of the Republican Party and I have not participated and will not participate in the 2008 precinct caucus or convention system of any other party.

I don't consider myself a Democrat or a republican, really. I'm an independent... but I do want to caucus. The Republican oath is especially irritating. It's not just what affiliation do you consider yourself as having, but you're swearing that you are a member of the Republican party.

Well, damn. The question comes to: which party do I want to caucus for this year?

Posted by Phelix | January 24, 2008 9:54 AM

Christ. I just want candidates already, this is taking ages.

Posted by Alphonse | January 24, 2008 9:57 AM

I don't think you to be registered to vote in our caucus. But that being said the video on the WA-Dems website is very vague about any ID requirements or whatever. If someone has the official rules that would clear things up nicely.

Posted by karst | January 24, 2008 10:01 AM

Do I have to be a Registered Voter in Washington State to vote at my caucus? Yes.

Do I have to be a registered Democrat to vote in the caucus?
Washington State does not require a voter to register by Party.

Do I have to be registered to vote in the precinct that I will caucus in? Yes, you must be registered in the precinct that you are caucusing in. If you have recently moved you can reregister at the precinct Caucus on that day. Other options if you have recently moved: You can go back to your old precinct or you can petition to be a delegate for a candidate in your new precinct without voting by writing a statement stating that you will be willing to be the delegate for a particular candidate.

FAQ page:

read up, people.

Posted by city kitty | January 24, 2008 10:11 AM

No, the relevant question is this one:

Who can participate in their caucus? All registered voters and those who will be 18 at the time of the presidential election can vote at their caucus. You can register to vote at the caucus location and vote in the caucus. Others who are not registered can participate but can not vote.

It is not too late to register, you may caucus if you're 17 now but will be 18 by the general presidential election, and the Washington Ds allow you to register at your precinct site and caucus there immediately.

Know your rights.

Posted by annie | January 24, 2008 10:17 AM

Someone asked about the "Stop Hillary" sidebar advertisement the other day, and now I'm seeing a "John McCain for President" link?? What's going on over there at Stranger HQ?

Posted by kid icarus | January 24, 2008 10:19 AM

@1 Bellevue Ave:

No, it's not too late to register to vote, to participate in the caucus.

You can register to vote at the caucus location itself, too.

Posted by Cleve | January 24, 2008 10:33 AM

In addition to reading up on your own about the rules, it's good to talk directly to the folks who wrote the rules and who will apply the rules on Feb. 9th.
That means contacting your local Democratic organization and perhaps your own neighborhood Democratic Precinct Committee Officer ("PCO") before you go to the caucus, if you have a question about the rules.

Find out what Legislative District you are in (there are 49 in Washington State) (examples: Capitol Hill -- 43d, West Seattle 34th, NE Seattle 46th, QA/Ballard 36th, CD/Rainier Valley 37th, and other parts of S Seattle, 11th). Then find the website for the "43d District Democrats" or "36th District Democrats" and so on.
Then find your precinct, and the PCO, or use contact phone nos. published on the web sites.

Once you know your district (where's Colbert when we need him??), the sites for the district organizations (as well as public phone nos. for contact persons) are listed here:

Posted by Cleve | January 24, 2008 10:50 AM

And for more info, if you're on Facebook, there's an event for it that gives details as well. I'm doing the Fremont Library caucus.

Posted by Will in Seattle | January 24, 2008 10:51 AM

P.S.: Phelix - if you're not going to vote for a Democrat in November, you can go to the Republican caucus. Or just vote in the Primary.

Posted by Will in Seattle | January 24, 2008 10:54 AM

and you can register to vote ONLINE today - check out the links they gave.

Posted by Will in Seattle | January 24, 2008 10:56 AM

Not so fun fact: Of its 97 WA state delegates, the Dem party appoints only 51 through the caucus process.

Posted by Trevor | January 24, 2008 11:41 AM

Join the National Women's Political Caucus of WA at a Caucus-Eve info session at Spitfire (2219 4th Ave in Belltown). Friday 2/8 6-8pm. RSVP at

Posted by The NWPC-WA | January 24, 2008 11:45 AM

@17 - I think you mean the GOP. The GOP only has half the delegates from the caucus and half from the primary. The Dems have all from the caucus.

Super delegates are traditionally not counted (e.g. Elected members of Congress and Senate and Governor and DNC), so they were NEVER up for election anyway. They tend to change their votes at the last moment to go with the winning candidate, so they're less important than you'd think.

Posted by Will in Seattle | January 24, 2008 12:06 PM

Also - if you harbor any dream of going to the Dem National Convention in Denver, the precinct caucuses are the place to start your long, grueling path to getting elected.

I went as a Dean delegate to Boston in 2004, and it was a life-changing experience.

But the whole path of running for the honor? Ugh.

Hey, the Stranger should find a couple kids who are wanting to run for delegate, and follow them throughout their process. That's a cool story.

Posted by el ganador | January 24, 2008 12:19 PM

@ 11 The Stop Hillary Side Bar, and subsequent "John McCain" for Prez ad, is to prepare those of us on where to contribute when HRC receives the nomination.

There are MANY people who will be switching from Dems and voting Republican if Hillary becomes the nominee...

The Stranger is just helping facilitate those folks.

Posted by Reality Check | January 24, 2008 12:19 PM

Reality Check and those like you: fuck off. Anyone who thinks McCain is better than Clinton is a fucking idiot.

Posted by Cascadian | January 24, 2008 12:29 PM

Jillary McCainton. They both suck.

Posted by DOUG. | January 24, 2008 12:37 PM

Just what America needs for "change," a septugenarian white male (would be oldest American president ever at Inauguration--if he survives the election) who still believes in "states' rights" (see Marriage Equality).

Can we still dream of a Gore/Obama ticket? Probably not.

Posted by Andy Niable | January 24, 2008 12:54 PM
Anyone who thinks McCain is better than Clinton is a fucking idiot.
A fine example of the angry partisanship Hillary stands for.
Posted by Mike of Renton | January 24, 2008 12:57 PM

From the faq:

4. Does it cost anything to participate in my caucus? No, it is free, but you will be asked for a donation during the caucus, because it costs the Democratic Party to put them on.
Oooh, not only do you get to support the candidate of your choice(s), but you can vote, with your wallet, on whether you prefer the caucus to a primary. Nice.

Posted by Mike of Renton | January 24, 2008 1:05 PM

Will @ 19: @17 is right. The precinct caucuses lead to the LD and then Congressional District caucuses, where 51 delegates to the national convention will be awarded.

The 46 delegates not decided through the caucus process are either superdelegates (10), at-large delegates (17) and unpledged party leaders (members of Congress, Tom Foley for some reason, the gov, and DNC members. Plus 2 'unpledged add-on delegates', whatever the hell those are. The at-large delegates will be elected at the state convention. There's more in the labrynth of rules, but the nuts'n'bolts is that @17 is right.

Posted by switzerblog | January 24, 2008 1:27 PM

God, I'm fucking dreading the caucuses. I hated it in 2004, when the Kerry people lied to me about changing my support, and I'm sure I'm going to hate it when I have to fend off attempts by the HRC people to fuck with the vote.

Posted by Gitai | January 24, 2008 1:42 PM

Hey, 25? I'm not supporting Hillary. If I had to choose between her and Barack I'd probably choose him, despite his followers. I'm just fed up with Obama supporters who prefer McCain to Clinton, and regurgitate all of the usual right wing and misogynist talking points about her.

On February 9th, I'm voting for Edwards unless he's out of the race or is not viable in my precinct. All my other possible choices have dropped out and Edwards is clearly superior to the two other remaining candidates.

Posted by Cascadian | January 24, 2008 3:57 PM

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