PDHblog This is a place for members of Progressive Democrats of Hawai‘i to express their thoughts, hopes and exasperations about political happenings.

February 20, 2008

Hawaii Caucus Retrospective

As a precinct president, I helped staff my Democratic Caucus in Honolulu (District 25), and it was a phenomenal night! I brought a friend with a disability and arrived early, about 5:30 (voting was to begin at 7 PM). At that time, almost everyone there was a volunteer worker, but soon people coming to vote were arriving early. People had gotten word of a possible huge turnout. We had a huge line of new voters, and another huge line of people registering as Democrats for the first time— so many that we ran out of Democratic Party registration forms! If we had designed the influx better, we might have had a third line for registered voters who are already members of the Democratic party, but weren’t sure which precinct they were in (we could have processed everyone faster.) Some came expecting to vote early, registered, and then had to leave before voting even began.

Everyone had to go to their precinct table to await the official time for the caucus vote, 7:00 – 7:30 PM. Our tables were filled to overflowing. Some precincts quickly ran out of Precinct Sign-in forms, and I barely had enough. The procedure was that when the District Chair gave the go-ahead, everyone had to get a ballot from a precinct officer and vote. Unfortunately, we had no microphone or loudspeakers in the room full of hundreds of people! The poor district chair had to try to shout over the din to let us know when it was time to vote. Once balloting started at 7:00, there was mayhem for a while. There were FOUR names on the ballot: Clinton and Obama, of course, but also Kucinich and Edwards, even though they had dropped out, and “Uncommitted.”
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