February 09, 2008
Caucus Report II

Extra VII: Frequent SP commenter "TB" passed along some information about the 45th LD and a few observations. Not surprisingly McCain had a strong showing in this Eastside district garnering 141 delegates; Huckabee received 91, Romney 75, Paul 60, Uncommitted 113, Thompson 9, Hunter 3 and Newt Gingrich 1 (spearheading the advance for a 2012 run no doubt...)

Ron Paul supporters seemed to be the most gung-ho about getting tapped to become a delegate; 67% of "Paul-bearers" going to caucus became delegates. McCain had the lowest percentage at around 42% (according to the thumbnail number crunching passed along).

Far from being disenfranchised by the Evil Republican Party Machine one can assume Paul supporters were welcomed afterall to take part in the process. Or I guess it could mean they were amazingly clever and too politically adroit to succumb to the pitfalls and minefields constructed to prevent the "rEVOLution" from being heard...

Extra VI: Pierce County GOP Chair Deryl McCarty has an update below with new numbers. The party is still tabulating numbers in Pierce with 5 precincts and the 29th LD still waiting to be turned in according to the party website.

Delegate preferences are 192 McCain, 186 Huckabee, 143 Romney, 142 Paul and 51 uncommitted.Total preferences were 609 Huckabee, 571 McCain, 304 Romney, 303 Paul, 167 uncommitted.

Extra V: The King County Republican Party has announced that 100 percent of its precincts are reporting. Out of the 4,195 caucus votes tallied 31.49% went for McCain, 19.02% Huckabee, 16.88% Paul, 14.59% Romney, 17.47% Uncommitted and 0.55% "Others". NOTE: The numbers reported by the KCGOP are the elected delegates and are not the total number of people who turned out.

It is probably no surprise that King County results weighed so heavy for McCain.

Clark County has released this breakdown of total caucus-goers and (more important) the preferences of elected delegates. There is a marked difference.

Of the 1,395 caucus votes, 29% went for Huckabee, 23.5% McCain, 23% Paul and 22% Romney. However, 224 elected delegates favored Paul, 211 Huckabee, 184 Romney and just 151 for McCain with 88 uncommitted.

It is curious that even though the Arizona senator is the presumed frontrunner, and he placed second in Clark, the majority of his supporters, 178, either chose not to, or weren't voted, to become delegates.

Extra IV: Just got news from the Washington State Republican Party. Contrary to reports from the cable news networks the state party is still tabulating caucus results and are updating on a regular basis.

9:45 p.m. McCain 25.6%, Huckabee 23.8%, Paul 21%, Romney 16.3%, Uncommitted 12.2%, Other 1%.


Extra III: Former Longview Mayor Dennis Weber from Cowlitz County e-mailed me an account of his Caucus experience.

A record-shattering 400 Republicans from all over Cowlitz County attended precinct caucuses Saturday as Mitt Romney edged out Mike Huckabee 32% to 27%. Ron Paul actually edged out national front-runner John McCain 17% to 16%. These are results based of preferences of the 300 delegates elected to attend the April 5 County Convention to be held in Kalama.

As a faithful caucus-goer since 1970, I know this is the largest turnout, exceeding even that of Ronald Reagan's victory in the hotly-contested 1980 primary season with John Anderson, George H. W. Bush and the rest.

Nearly all caucuses were pooled in Kelso where the group voted down attempts by Ron Paul supporters to condemn the Patriot Act and endorse absolute strict construction of the Constitution. All other resolutions were referred to the Platform Committee.

No presidential candidate has appeared in Cowlitz County since Bill Clinton in 1996. McCain obviously still has a lot of work cut for him to unify the party.

Update II: McCain and Huckabee are in a virtual dead-heat here in Washington (at this writing 7:30 p.m. looks like 27% McCain, 26% Huckabee... oh, and 21% Paul, 17% Romney). The world's best political bass player clobbered the old sailor in the Kansas Primary 60-24 and in the Lousiana Primary 46-37. Apparently Huckabee snagged all 36 of the delegates up for grabs in Kansas. We'll see how the delegates in the other two electoral grab-bags sort out.

When will you people ever learn to never, never, NEVER follow the conventional wisdom in this particular presidential race? You expect the political illiterates on the liberal blogs not to know what the heck is going on and swallow the same line over and over again. And the talking heads on the national news networks are so far removed from reality that literally whatever they say, you can go to your bookie and pay for your kid's braces betting against the prognostications proffered on CNN, CBS, MSNBC and especially FOXNews.

So McCain has a cake-walk to the nomination? No. That's why he's up in Seattle yesterday canvassing for votes. And that's why he's jetting off to every state up-for-grabs next week. The race isn't over when there is still a coalition of conservatives rallying around Huckabee. And not with 286 delegates wielded by Romney swaying in the balance.

Huckabee only appeals to niche southern voters (written here at SP)? Well tell that to Kansas and Washington State.

With how mind-blowingly surreal this campaign has been you never know when the next personal breakdown or world shattering event will crop up to influence the final outcome.

So if you are a big McCainiac, get out, bust your butt and start volunteering and donating scratch. If you are a Republican that despises the man so much that you'll vote for Hillary or Obama or sit home and pout like a jilted housewife then hop behind Huckabee. Heard he cooks up a mighty fine southern-fried squirrel.

Earlier: Finally have gotten back behind a computer after doing the standard commute and caucus. I reported at the Eatonville Community Center in the 2nd Legislative District. About 30-40 folks showed up. Far more than the six or seven in 2000 and 2004.

It was decidely a pro-Huckabee crowd. Anyone who knows the small-town politics of Eatonville know the folk I'm talking about. If you want to see the textbook picure of the stereotypical evangelical voter well there you had it.

My particular precinct was pretty straight-forward. McCain seems to be the guy and the only debate was whether a vote for Huckabee or a vote for Romney would ensure that he stays committed to conservative principles as long as possible. Did our duty, got in, filled out the survey and chatted about the weather and spread gossip about people we knew. Then we bailed and headed down for omelettes at the Tall Timbers. (Best restaurant and best desserts on the Road to Rainier).

All the other precincts... Yeesh. Nothing much more funny than overhearing the debates between evangelical Huckabites throwing down with Ron Paul-bearers, Romney diehards and a McCainiac or two.

Extra: Overheard another story about the North Bend precincts. Apparently the Democratic caucus at Snoqualmie Middle School was so crowded that the Dems had filled the school parking lot and they were parking in the lots of nearby businesses. Pretty much a fifty-fifty Hillary vs. Obama split between that segment of white, suburban/rural voters.

Posted by DonWard at February 09, 2008 09:00 PM | Email This
1. In keeping with WSRP incompetence, the D's have reported 57% of their results, while we've come up with zip, zero, nada.

Now our incompetence is on display to the entire world.

Posted by: Hinton on February 9, 2008 06:07 PM
2. Sounds like Ron Paul won Spokane County.


Posted by: ScottM on February 9, 2008 06:19 PM
3. Hinton, we were only selecting delegates to the County Convention which as I understand it will designate delegates to the State Convention. At any rate, the final delegates will only represent 50% of the Washington GOP delagates. The other 50% will be selected in the primary held on Feb. 19th.

I hope that explains why we aren't seeing results of our Caucuses. They would not be meaningful figures in any way at this point. I'm sure we will hear some results, but they can in no way be conclusive. On the Dem side todays event was the whole enchillada.

I don't think it's appropriate to fault the WSRP for not providing results for a process that is entirely different in our Party than it is for the Democrats today.

Others more knowledgeable in the mechanics of this process please feel free to correct me.

Posted by: Bill Cruchon on February 9, 2008 06:24 PM
4. Huckabee has taken Whitman County with 34% of the delegates. Quite a surprise, considering the number of WSU students supporting Ron Paul. Paul finished third.


Posted by: Tom Forbes on February 9, 2008 06:28 PM
5. With 16% reporting, Fox is saying it's McCain 27, Huck 26, Paul 21.

The Dems have 71% reporting.

Posted by: ScottM on February 9, 2008 06:29 PM
6. As a member of the 43rd LD GOP, my caucus met at Roosevelt H.S. in Seattle. My small precinct selected a Romney delegate by a vote of 2-1 over Ron Paul.

The Tacoma News Tribune, about 40 minutes ago, reported initial results (16% of caucus results counted so far) which include votes for Romney. The four candidates reported equal 90.4%, so presumbaly the remaining 9.6% went to Thompson, Giuliani, and other former candidates.

The following is from http://blogs.thenewstribune.com/politics/2008/02/09/ron_paul_a_close_third_in_very_early_was

"The first batch of numbers have been reported by the state Republican party and while Sen. John McCain and former Gov. Mike Huckabee are virtually tied, Ron Paul is just a bit behind. With just 16 percent of the caucus numbers reported by the party, McCain has 26.6 percent of the total and Huckabee has 25.9 percent. Paul is third with 21.2 percent. Mitt Romney, who suspended his campaign this week, still has 16.7 percent."

Posted by: Steve Beren on February 9, 2008 07:04 PM
7. Well, one thing they COULD do is, when they post: Next Update at: 7:00 PM.... they COULD actually UPDATE THE FRICKING WEBSITE AT 7:00 PM!

Posted by: Hinton on February 9, 2008 07:08 PM
8. It all doesn't matter. In Louisiana Huckabee has to have at least 50% of the vote just to guarantee himself half the delegates would vote for him at the National Convention, otherwise they are uncommitted. In Washington, they are uncommitted anyhow. So either way the wins don't mean much except for momentum.

Posted by: Doug on February 9, 2008 07:47 PM
9. Can I still vote for Romney even though his campaign is "suspended" (he withdrew)? That's my choice.

Posted by: Rodney Smith on February 9, 2008 08:22 PM
10. My whole family is disenfranchised by the caucus system and none of us can take part. One daughter is studying abroad and obviously can not caucus. My elderly mom is blind and disabled and cannot go to a caucus. My wife and I have to attend a school event with our kids precisely at 1:30 pm. I am disgusted by this charade of a democratic process that disenfranchises the elderly, the disabled and those who must work or have family and other obligations. This is not a democracy at its best.

Posted by: E on February 9, 2008 08:22 PM
11. Rodney Smith at #9:

Yes, you can vote for Romney, if you like, in the February 19 Washington State primary. Eight candidates are on the ballot, including Romney, McCain, and Huckabee, plus former candidates (Hunter, Giuliani, and Thompson), and also Alan Keyes and Ron Paul. Presumably, you could also write-in someone other than those eight if you wanted to do so.

Posted by: Steve Beren on February 9, 2008 08:26 PM
12. Rodney. Yes you can. Even though his campaign is "suspended" it doesn't mean that he still can't pick up delegates. I believe Eric and Pudge both are of the belief that a Romney vote is the best way to keep McCain on the straight-and-narrow in terms of running as a Republican.

Theoretically if there is a brokered convention those Romney delegates can be wielded to influence an outcome.

Of course there are more convoluted strategies too.

Posted by: Don Ward on February 9, 2008 08:27 PM
13. All of ours (save 1 for mccain) down in boston harbor went to Romney. 4 precincts total.

neither huckaby nor mccain inspired this predominately mainstream bunch.

Posted by: Andy on February 9, 2008 08:32 PM
14. Don,

Like a vote for Romney will be a wasted vote, because he won't have enough votes to get anymore delegates in any of the states. Therefore a vote for Romney will make it easier for McCain to get more delegates to reach the mark he needs to guarantee no brokered convention and therefore no requirement that could be placed on him to get a VP candidate.

Posted by: Doug on February 9, 2008 08:35 PM
15. From http://projects.washingtonpost.com/2008-presidential-candidates/primaries/states/wa/r/

With 78% of the results tabulated: McCain 26%, Huckabee 24%, Paul 21%, Romney 16%, uncommitted 13%.

Posted by: Steve Beren on February 9, 2008 08:44 PM
16. E at #10, "My whole family is disenfranchised by the caucus system and none of us can take part."

I think you make some good points. If you are a Democrat, today's caucases were the only way to express a Presidential preference.

However, if you are a Republican only 50% of potential delegates were selected. You still have a primary to vote in on Feb. 19th where you will have a voice in selecting Republican Presidential delegates.

Remind me again, which party is it that disenfranchises voters?

Posted by: Bill Cruchon on February 9, 2008 08:54 PM
17. Why anyone would want to vote for a person who is no longer a candidate is beyond me.

We even had votes for Thompson & Keyes...how off the wall is that?? This goes absolutely nowhere!!

Posted by: Susu on February 9, 2008 09:00 PM
18. Don't mistake my above comment as "endorsing" a vote for Romney. People are free to do whatever they want.

The comment in paragraph #5 about this race being mind-blowingly surreal is in order. That some folks have gotten to the point that they feel voting for one candidate that's out of the race helps or hurts another is just one example.

Posted by: Don Ward on February 9, 2008 09:10 PM
19. Which party disenfranchises voters?


They both decide, as private clubs, how they want to select their candidates for elections.

For some reason, we taxpayers at times, seem to find ourselves funding their private club activities.

Bill, you know that.

Posted by: BA on February 9, 2008 09:53 PM
20. BA...I disagree... I'm not part of any club. But it sure is a lot easier to vote and partcipate as a Republican by voting abstentee. If I were a Dem (like my mom who didn't bother because she didn't want to go caucus) I would be forced to show up.

Although I admit the process shown on TV at some of those turn outs looked fun.

Posted by: Megs on February 9, 2008 10:11 PM
21. As a member of the 43rd LD GOP, my caucus met at Roosevelt HS in Seattle.
My small precinct selected a McCain delegate and a Ron Paul delegate.
There were no Romney supporters here.

My gut feel is the 43rd will have the following

Posted by: Green on February 9, 2008 11:28 PM
22. Goldy claiming that "Democrats really love America". Yeah right.

Posted by: FreedomLover on February 9, 2008 11:46 PM
23. What happened to the conservatives favorite son- Romney ? McCain edged out Huckabee, with Romney a fairly distant fourth behind Ron Paul. I guess that makes some sense and probably a good real time snapshot.

I predict that McCain's VP choice will not be any of the other candidates listed above.

Posted by: KS on February 9, 2008 11:50 PM
24. Well I am a Romney fan. Sure he suspended his run but he did not quit. It took a while to support Romney because I liked the conservatives running but they were getting no traction. It is good to Ron Paul Supporters out. I disagree with some of the things he stands for but he does have good ideas. A vote for other than McCain is a vote for Common Sense. IF McCain can not get a third of the Republican vote in a liberal state like Washington. It says a lot on his capability to bring out the Republicans in the General Election. There are a lot of factors that affect who are candidate will be. The less votes McCain gets the more important McCain sees he has to be able to convince COnservatives that he is a Conservative. That is a tough sell with all the liberal bills he has supported with the Democrats. If you can not excite the Republican base that is a sure sign of weakness. We need leadership not backroom deals. Leadership that excites Republicans and gets them to get out and vote. That is the only way we can win. McCain had better find a way to start exciting Republicans or he will not get enough delegates unless one of his opponents gives his delegates to him.

Posted by: David Anfinrud on February 9, 2008 11:59 PM
25. Wow...McCain would have lost Washington if not for the cretinous Romney supporters wasting their votes on a candidate that already dropped out. That's too bad.

Posted by: Shank on February 10, 2008 12:10 AM
26. Some group in some way connected to Hucakbee robo called me twice in the past couple days. A real turn off. The guys's got no money left, just doing robo-calls. And the calls were very Democrat like. Leading questions designed to appeal to emotion and shame the would-be voter into rejecting McCain or otherwise.

Very tacky stuff, and what I think Huckabee showed a lot of throughout his campaign. Go to HotAir.com to visit a history of all the slimy Huckabee remarks throughout. I'm not all that impressed with McCain's lack of class either, but I find Huckabee's slimy campaign tactics very much at odds with his devout Christian minister presentation.

As for Obama, it's just another star struck JFK messiah narrative for the Democrats. Man those people are guided only by emotion, and a desire for as much statism as they can possibly impose. Really disgusting ideology. The Obama Key Arena mass seemed about like what we see from the extreme religious right. Both are very kooky. Heaven help us if the best this country can do is Obama and McCain.

Posted by: Jeff B. on February 10, 2008 01:27 AM
27. Wow -- I looked at the King County GOP website. Their headline is: "Turnout for Republican caucuses exceeds all expectations in King County"

I will trust Don's math. His total of 4,195 Republican caucus voters in King County appears to be correct. This impressive turnout of 4,195 Republican voters in King County "exceeds all expectations" -- even those of King County GOP leadership.

How impressive is this turnout? Let's see. King County had 2,553 precincts (at least as of the November 2007 election). So this means that an average of 1.643 Republican voters per precinct caucused in King County. Truly impressive!

I would suspect that the Democratic turnout in King County is at least 20 times greater than the Republican turnout. In my precinct, BEL 48-0140, 41 Democratic voters showed up for the caucus. While the 48th LD does have three Democratic legislators (like most other King County LD's), the 48th LD also has one of the highest concentrations of Republicans (and lowest for Democrats) of any LD in King County. So probably the average Democratic turnout per precinct is somewhat higher than 41 in King County as a whole.

Obviously, Democratic voters do not outnumber Republican voters by anywhere near 20 to 1 in King County. The disparity in caucus numbers simply shows how very little enthusiasm Republican voters have for any of their presidential candidates.

Posted by: Richard Pope on February 10, 2008 02:14 AM
28. I would also think that this turnout of only 4,195 Republican voters for precinct caucuses is somewhat smaller than the number of allowable delegates that could have been elected from the 2,553 precincts in King County.

First of all, every Republican PCO is an automatic precinct delegate -- assuming they bother to attend and lead their own precinct caucus. There are something like 700 Republican PCO's in King County -- used to be several times this many, but the number declines every election.

Second (in addition to the automatic PCO delegate, if applicable), each precinct gets to elect at least two delegates (and two alternates). Often, a precinct is entitled to more than two delegates, if there is a sufficiently high amount of Republican voting strength.

So this would mean that King County Republicans could have chosen over 5,800 precinct delegates -- 700 PCO's, plus at least 5,100 elected precinct delegates.

As it was, at least 1/3 of the precinct delegate slots in King County went unfilled -- simply because zero voters or hardly any voters showed up for a given precinct caucus.

Posted by: Richard Pope on February 10, 2008 02:24 AM
29. My precinct had no PCO because the leg District chair did not want it filled and it was also only allowed on delagate, not two.

I find it interesting that the Cowlitz party chose to fight AGAINST following the constitution in their platform. I would have liked to have heard the arguements.

Posted by: Lysander on February 10, 2008 05:49 AM
30. Ok, I usually tend to think Republicans are decent and intelligent people, and usually like to give them the benefit of the doubt, but 20% for Ron Paul? Really? Thats just plain embarrassing.

@10, I know on the Dem side you could send a surrogate if your disabled or out of the Country. I would imagine the Republicans do the same.

As for just a conflict, sorry but having to go to a meeting is nothing compared to what millions around the world go through and have gone through for that wonderful thing we call democracy. A little inconvenience at times can remind us of just how precious it is.

Posted by: Giffy on February 10, 2008 08:53 AM
31. The Pierce County initial results from last night, minus 6 precincts forom the 2nd, 26th 31st and the whole of the 29th LD whose numbers from the approximately 140-150 who showed up can't be counted until today:

From the sign-in sheets - 1946 total
McCain: 564
Huckabee: 609
Romney: 303
Paul: 303
Uncommitted: 167

Delegates - 711 elected
McCain: 189
Huckabee: 186
Romney: 143
Paul: 142
Uncommitted: 51

My suspicion is that McCain's Pierce County numbers will rise a bit as the others are counted - but only a bit.

Posted by: Deryl McCarty on February 10, 2008 08:58 AM
32. I attended my caucus yesterday at Nathan Hale HS (representing precinct 2221.) I bicycled down from Haller Lake and accidentally walked into the democrat?s caucus at nearby Summit K-12. It was swarming with people--an absolute madhouse. Folks walked in and found their precinct table. Very young, enthusiastic crowd. Several other cyclists.

I got out of there as quickly as possible and rode another 4 blocks to Nathan Hale. I stood in line for 25 minutes before being told that some one from my precinct had already picked up the packet and I could just go in and find my table. The crowd here was much older and while the turnout was good, the dems down the street was much higher. I estimate ~200 people at my caucus vs. (I was told) ~40 for the last one. The dems were too thick to count as they were not all in one room. No one else that I saw had ridden a bike to Nathan Hale.

The process was a pain in the a$$ to figure out although this was my first caucus. I literally had to explain to my table that it was okay if they also voted mail-in. One older guy kept telling me 'that was voting twice and illegal.' I wasn't sure at the time so I verified with the ranking party official present and then encouraged my table to also vote absentee.

The gent I explained to turned out to be the only other person from my precinct that showed up--he prefers McCain. Unfortunately he cannot make it to the convention, so I got elected as delegate and will get to vote for him.

My purpose yesterday was to show support for Paul. He has his flaws, but I want a more limited federal gov that adheres strictly to the Constitution. In the general election, I will hold my nose and fall in step behind McCain or whoever because I cannot bear the thought of a dem getting elected. I consider myself more of a Libertarian but obviously didn?t have many choices yesterday.

Posted by: Dantzler on February 10, 2008 10:04 AM
33. Giffy, I suspect many of the Ron Paul supporters are not really Republicans but instead Libertarians. I don't think there are that many Republicans who favor immediate pullout from Iraq, and cutting off aid to Isreal. I also think Paul has drawn in some liberals who will return to form and vote for Obama in the end.

Like our friend Bruce Guthrie, these people will likely vote Libertarian since Paul doesn't have a snowball's chance of getting the nomination.

Posted by: Bill Cruchon on February 10, 2008 10:29 AM
34. It is curious that even though the Arizona senator is the presumed frontrunner, and he placed second in Clark, the majority of his supporters, 178, either chose not to, or weren't voted, to become delegates.

Very good observation, Don. I heard from several precincts around the state where the McCain "supporters" were not enthusiastic supporters but believed he was the presumptive nominee, so it was important to support him now. They were typically less likely to want to be delegates.

It isn't very clear from the WSRP website that the count they're giving is delegates won or the meaningless preference poll of the caucus attendees. What is clear (even if that is the delegate count) is that our party is very divided and non-McCain supporters will dominate their conventions. State delegates have yet to be chosen, much less national delegates.

Posted by: Michelle on February 10, 2008 10:36 AM
35. I didn't notice any enthusiasm for McCain at my caucus either. It's more like resignation.

Here's a man who has sucked up to the left repeatedly, and has drunk a full pitcher of the socialists global warming kool-aid. Now he wants us all to be loyal Republicans and come together to vote for him. How loyal has be been to Republican principles?

Posted by: Bill Cruchon on February 10, 2008 10:49 AM
36. 1. Is it accurate that only some 4xxx people showed up at King County GOP caucuses?

2. The State GOP hasn't released the final totals yet. It's about 87% counted, they say. They call it for McCain though they say it's 25.5% for McCain and 23.7 for Huckabee, a difference of 1.8 with some 12.8% not reported. The NYT map for Washington sate says "County-level data not available."

What in heck is going on here?
Why are thee results not yet available??

How can you declare McCain won on this basis?
A 1.8 % points difference could change depending on which counties were counted first-- or perhaps because of rounding rules and other rules that would affect the no. of delegates, maybe Huckbee got more delegates than McCain.

Ron Paul in it, too, a few points behind Huckabee, too.

Why is there no final data?

Posted by: Cleve on February 10, 2008 10:52 AM
37. "Why is there no final data?"

Cleve, I don't pretend to be an expert on the process. The Caucus merely elected delegates to county conventions which will in turn select delegates to the state convention. The numbers coming from the caucuses are in no way conclusive and in the end only represent half the state delegates. The other half will be selected in a primary on February 19th.

Posted by: Bill Cruchon on February 10, 2008 11:01 AM
38. As much as I am sure it galls the average GOP supporter, it is quite apparent that the Dems have done something very significant here in Washington (and elsewhere too).

From Fox's numbers this AM, and adjusting for the percentages of returns, it appears that the total turn out for the Dems in this state is about 2.4 times that for the GOP.

This may reflect something other than how voters turn out next Nov, but it is very interesting nonetheless.

With about 5 delegates now separating the two Dem front runners, the GOP might be able to capitalize on sour grapes from the eventual losers supporters come Nov, but I would not bank on this unless Obama loses.

The GOP would do well to settle its differences now and concentrate on getting its message clearly stated and out there while there is still time.

And the message, especially if Obama wins the Dems nomination, has to be better than "We're not them".

Posted by: deadwood on February 10, 2008 11:16 AM
39. it is quite apparent that the Dems have done something very significant here in Washington (and elsewhere too).

Well considering the democrap caucuses were the ONLY way for the little liberal in the street to have a voice, is it any wonder they were out in force? How many STAYED home, here in liberal la-la land? THAT would be a more definitive statistic.

Get a grip, kiddies.

Posted by: Ragnar Danneskjold on February 10, 2008 11:27 AM
40. Furthermore, since only the GOP is participating in the primary voting, it will be a couple weeks before we can have a legitimate numbers comparison... 10 more days to get GOP voters to do so.

Posted by: Ragnar Danneskjold on February 10, 2008 11:33 AM
41. I was expecting a much smaller turnout at my 46th District Caucus since McCain has wrapped up the nomination. Turns out the place was packed. In '04 there were only 50 at the Caucus. We had around 300 yesterday. I'm sure the number would have been much higher had there been a Republican race as close as Hillary and Obama.

Posted by: Bill Cruchon on February 10, 2008 11:46 AM
42. With the conservative vote split between three candidates and religious conservatives unwilling to vote for a mormon, the Republican Party gets the sad outcome of backing a standard bearer who generates little passion among his party's base (the even sadder alternatives being Huckabee and Paul).
IMO, the only thing that will save the Republicans this year will be:
A) Clinton gets the Democrat nomination, or
B) Obama quits spouting platitudes and actually starts telling the world what he actually believes.

Remember, the socialist loons fell in love with McGovern, too.

Posted by: Attila on February 10, 2008 11:51 AM
43. The other group that is disenfranchised by the caucus system is the group that has the most at stake, namely our active duty military. Both parties want the military vote in November, but those state party organizations that still use the caucus system to pick their candidates are effectively and intentionally excluding those on active duty from participation. How can we claim that we are supporting our troops when we don't allow them to participate in the process of nominating their Commander-in-Chief? I recognize that in Washington a Republican on active duty may get half a vote by participating in the primary, but frankly that argument is almost more insulting to those who are putting their lives on the line every day, as more often than not it is made by one who has never served.

Posted by: tim on February 10, 2008 11:51 AM
44. TO #1, Perhaps thats because the R's actually COUNT the votes rather than relying on an already pre-determined outcome.

Posted by: Right Wing Wacko on February 10, 2008 11:54 AM
45. So much aso about nothing! Republicans are history, PERIOD!! Don't you get it????
...and, like I've said...Washington State does not a nominee make!!!

Posted by: Duffman on February 10, 2008 12:53 PM
46. The only semi-positive thing we can say about the Republican Party is that it has Ron Paul, ostensibly. He's the only one who makes any sense when compared to McCain and Huckabee.

Hopefully, the Democrats will continue to support Obama so as to throw Her Highness out on her butt. Just think: hillary shunted off to the dust bin of history. Nice thought, ain't it?

Posted by: Politically Incorrect on February 10, 2008 01:47 PM
47. Tim @ 43, I agree with you, and if military donations to candidates is any measure of support, including active members of the military in the caucus process would yield even higher support for Ron Paul. He got more money and more individual contributions than all other Republicans combined, and almost more than all other D and R candidates combined.

The big story in this caucus is the massive turnout, both for the R's and the D's. I wonder what the turnout would have been if Ron Paul hadn't brought thousands of alienated voters and young voters to the Republican caucus? I'll bet the Ron Paul factor accounts for about half of the increase over the GOP primary interest in 2000.

By the way, the 2004 GOP Primary statistics should not be compared to the 2008 primary. In 2004, the GOP had an incumbent President, who would almost certainly run for re-election. Why bother coming to the GOP primary in 2004? Only if you were a pro-Bush GOP die-hard. But in 2008, there is a chance to really change things. Ron Paul is a big factor in that change. Huckabee had an influence as well, by rallying the big-government social conservatives. But my guess is that McCain didn't stir a lot of passion out there.

The D's do have a lot of passion this year, (as noted so well by deadwood @ 38, and most of it is motivated by hatred of GW Bush, opposition to the Iraq war and the Neocon policy of policing the world, (which is not only anti-liberal, it is anti-American,) class warfare and a self-destructive desire for socialized medicine.

The current administration is responsible for fanning all of these flames. Yes, even socialized medicine. What we have now is already half socialized, and it is the wrong half. Everyone's medical care is now half socialized, whereas we could have kept the free market working for half of us if we had subsidized health insurance for the poor only and left the middle class and wealthy to the free market. But Bush gave us the medicare drug benefit, which gives substantial benefits to the elderly, who are disproportionately wealthy. He played right in to the liberals' hands, and created political momentum to socialize the other half.

We can blame the Neocons and the Bush administration for the coming Democratic landslide in '08. If the Republicans become military non-interventionists and true fiscal conservatives, they can win again in 2016.

(Remember, GW Bush won back in 2000 on a platform of military non-interventionism...)

Until then, this ill-advised war in Iraq has made all the other conservative goals politically unattainable for at least a decade.

Posted by: Bruce Guthrie on February 10, 2008 02:32 PM
48. #19

"They both decide, as private clubs, how they want to select their candidates for elections.

For some reason, we taxpayers at times, seem to find ourselves funding their private club activities."

I may be wrong on this but my understanding is that the primaries were mandated by the government at one point. The parties used to just caucus and someone in the government thought it would be a better idea if they were forced to admit more people to the process. That is why we pay publicly for those elections.

Posted by: Calvin A on February 10, 2008 02:39 PM
49. Not to be a massive conspiracy theorist, but, assuming these are sign-in counts (they are, right?) and not delegate totals...

Could Ron Paul have maybe, possibly won the most delegates?

I mean, look at those Clark County numbers...McCain had awful delegate retention (worse than Romney!), Paul did great, and Huckabee did "all right."

Extrapolating the Clark County situation statewide, mightn't Ron Paul have won? If I were the WAGOP, I'd be "delaying" results too. ;)

I doubt that's what's going on, but that's a political junkie dream, there.

Posted by: Benjamin Johnstone-Anderson on February 10, 2008 07:52 PM
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