By: Tisha Casida
I am the youngest person here by at least 20 years, and I am 28 years old. Out of 264 people in my precinct 83 – only 6 people are sitting at the table (only 5 technically count because when I registered to vote when I was 18 I decided that I was Independent). That is a 1.9% turnout. If this were a test – WE THE PEOPLE – failed miserably.
I am a citizen of the United States living in the great state of Colorado. I convinced my parents to go with me to the republican caucus taking place this evening – Tuesday March 16, 2010. In addition to the three of us, there were three others at our table – Bill, Ken, and Steve. Our chairman for our precinct was not present. Ken and Steve were diplomatic enough to take over and explain the processes as we went along. Reading material on most all of the candidates was available for everyone to look at as well as pick up – I saw every candidate there represented in one form or another except for Scott McInnis – I guess the Southern part of the state may not mean too much to him, at least that is what I came away with.
The purpose of a caucus, as I have gathered so far, is that this is where WE THE PEOPLE start to select candidates for governor, the U.S. senate, the U.S. house of representatives, state treasurer, state senate and house districts. On the docket tonight (at least for the straw pole) was to decide upon who the registered republican precinct members wanted for governor (Dan Maes vs. Scott McInnis) and the U.S. senate (Ken Buck vs. Jane Norton vs. Cleve Tidwell vs. Tom Wiens).
Several of the tables for other precincts meeting here were EMPTY – meaning that NO ONE from these precincts of around 200 people came to represent a candidate or represent a value or ideal they would like to see upheld. Tragic.
The process was simple, efficient, and ended in just ONE HOUR. We talked about all of the candidates, everyone voiced an opinion as to what they thought, the votes were made for the straw pole (at our table), and everyone was given the opportunity to present resolutions (of which we had none, however there were several for us to look at on one of the tables when we walked in).
It was overwhelming at first, but now an understandable process. Which really irritates me, because more people should have been there, more people should know what is going on (republican OR democrat OR anything else). This is a fatal flaw of the public education system – fifth graders should be able to rattle off their precinct number and the process of a caucus, a county convention, a state convention, and a primary. This is also a dangerous flaw with our society – the reason we are in the mess that we are in is because we have sat on our keisters and not taken an hour out of an evening to go to things like this.
Know your enemy folks – it is ignorance and arrogance. Learn about our political system, get involved, and fight for liberty – we are all we have.