About the Iowa Caucus

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How is Iowa used in electing future presidents? The political Parties use the caucus to measure their status among mainstream America. This is the beginning of how presidential candidates will represent themselves among politics, as well as local and party line politics.

Deciphering the Iowa caucus.

The caucus is predominately a closed group of people or more pointedly a political party coming together in a closed meeting to select their party line candidates or to decide on policy. However the Iowa caucus should not be confused with the Primary where the candidate is actually selected to represent their party. The Iowa caucus is considered the first step in the presidential nomination for both mainstream parties. This is not because Iowa is really important, it's because Iowa is first in the series of caucuses.

Why is Iowa considered Important by the media and potential presidential candidates? Iowa is deemed as important because it's the first state in the union to conduct a caucus and it's considered the first real challenges candidates will face. Iowa is also considered a state that equally represents American on a majority of the views on both sides' of political lines. Additionally, Iowa is the first state to start the caucus. Thus, Iowa receives most of the attention. This is also considered a preliminary view of who the individual parties will select to represent them in running for president. So, Hence, January 3rd brings a lot of interests for prior speculations among media and political consultants.

Democratic Process when in Caucus for Iowa

In the Democratic caucuses party officials in each county split the county into groups by either precinct or legislative districts. There are currently 99 counties in Iowa. These groups can be hosted at schools fire stations, or even an individuals home. The whole point is to create a group where the attendants have a minimum of 15%-25 of attendees if another group is present and has less than 15% they must either join another group or stand out. Iowa always holds their caucus on January 3rd. During the democratic caucus supporters write their names and the names of the candidates they have chosen to support on the cards. Next, the cards will be added to the number of people supporting a candidate in the first round. If that candidate doesn't get the 15 percent of votes to be considered viable, the cards won't be used further. Individual supports not in the 15% percentile may reallocate their support to another candidate or group. Hence, candidates vie for support of people that are not in a particular group in hopes of increasing their margin or percentage of people supporting their run for presidency.

Republican Process when in Caucus for Iowa

In the Republican caucuses, each voter casts his or her vote by secret ballot. Voters are given sheets of paper without the candidate names printed on them. Voters begin by listening to other people campaigning for a particular candidate. This again is done by caucus participants, after the voters have made their choice they write it down and the information is provided to the Republican Party. Iowa republicans total the results at all 99 precincts then in turn they notify people of the media of the results. The results are calculated and reported to the state party which provides the results to the media.

A Delegate from each precinct caucus is sent on to the county convention. In turn, the county convention chooses delegates to the District Convention, which makes the selection of delegates to the State Convention. So, in actuality it is the Republican state convention, not the precinct caucuses, which ultimately selects delegates to the Republicans National Convention in Iowa. The media usually allocates delegates by estimating county convention results. However, delegates are officially unbound from the precinct caucus. It should be noted as a part of the democratic caucus there is no way to vote anonymously. Voters may request what could be considered as a sort of absentee ballot, which is commonly referred to as a preference card. A preference card may be issued if the voter has to work or can't attend because of a disability or health reasons or other legitimate reasons. To be a responsible voter we must research and understand the game of the partyline politics

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Dennis Seeley has 1 articles online


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About the Iowa Caucus

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This article was published on 2010/04/04
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