Today was my state's caucus. And up until this morning I was still very undecided as to whether I wanted to vote for Clinton or Obama. So I spent the morning doing a lot of thinking. We had some friends over for brunch and a playdate, and we all actually sat around and talked about the candidates for awhile. After they left, while the Bean napped, Husband and I talked some more.
Ultimately, I decided to caucus for Obama. And the reason I decided to caucus for Obama is that when I talked about Hilary, I realized that the person I wanted to vote for was actually Hilary 10+ years ago. I feel like Hilary today is so enmeshed with the party machinery, that I was afraid of just getting more middle-of-the-road policy making (as she has been voting for the last 8 years). Obama, on the other hand, fills me with a lot of hope for the future. And while he may not achieve everything he is setting out to do, 'm really glad that he's aiming high. I also think his general likeableness has a good chance of helping him achieve even difficult things.
Anyway, so I made up my mind. And at 12:45 we dragged poor Bean from her crib where she was napping and headed out to caucus.
It was kind of more amazing than I remembered from my first-ever caucus in 2004. There were LOTS of people. There were apparently more people than they had ever had in previous years, so the gymnasium we were in was overflowing with people. Everyone around was smiling and happy.
My crazy neighbor is apparently a Kucinich supporter and was trying to pass out Kucinich literature to me as I signed in (totally illegal because she was one of the organizers, so she wasn't supposed to be trying to influence people as they wrote down their preferences). Anyway, so there was a good number of my neighbors there milling around our precinct sign. We chatted and laughed.
When it was time, the head chick gave a big speech about what a landmark year this would be for the history of our country, and how we should all volunteer for the party this election year. It was very nice. Then we said the pledge of allegiance (I literally can't remember the last time I said this). Then we got down to business.
The organizer for our precinct stood on a chair in the middle of the group and talked to us about what was about to happen. Anyone who wanted to was then given up to a minute to speak on behalf of their candidate. About 10 people spoke on Obama's behalf, my crazy neighbor spoke for Kucinich, and nobody spoke for Clinton (kind of disappointing). Then we all divided up according to our candidate. It wasn't even close. There were about 40 people for Obama, and 6 for Clinton (my neighbor decided to stay unpledged). So our precinct qualified for 5 delegates. 4 went to Obama, 1 to Clinton. Afterwards, we were all allowed to submit issues to be considered for incorporation into the party platform. Then everyone left.
Oh, and there were lots of children there. That wasn't a problem. In fact, the Bean in her "Little Democrat" bib was the hit of the caucus.