I have personally seen candidates meet with delegates at lunches that the
candidates paid for.But since politicians often get their meals paid for by
lobbyists some may not see this as a problem. Another issue I have with the
caucus system is that it sometimes is not possible for everyone to attend the
caucus. Some people have to work in the evening, some people are away serving
their country in the military(they can vote in primaries and general elections
by absentee ballot), some people are away serving their Church on Missions, and
some may either be sick themselves or have sick children. In addition there is
a group of people who may attend but cannot legally participate, these people
are Federal Employees(such as those who work at Hill AFB) and Active Duty
Military personnel who are registered to vote in Utah.
I have attended caucus meetings. It didn't represent the majority
neighborhood. And to Mike Richards comments ....who are these "party
elites"? The party I once called my own isso fractured. The party elites
are now the people or groups (such as the Eagle Forum) who marshal the most
troops to the caucus meetings. It does not represent the peoples views.
To "Furry1993" you do realize that people like Ronald Reagan would be
called "far right extremists" by today's Republicans. Even JFK
would be called a "far right extremist" by today's standards.So, which is it. Do you want to return to Reagan values of small
government and tax rates that encourage growth and hiring? Or do you want to go
with the mainstream GOP and just be a slow moving Progressive?If
Bush and McCain are examples of the party mainstream, take a close look at their
policies. They are exactly the same in nature as the extreme left in the
Democrat party. The only difference is magnitude.So the question
becomes are you going with the mainstream Progressives in the GOP or are you
going with the Tea Party and that group that wants to return to the Reagan idea
of limited government.
@RedShirtWhat's holding me in the Republican Party? The
desire to recover it from the far right fringes and return it to what it should
be (and what it was prior to the early 1990s when it was hijacked far right).
When the policies of people like Barry Goldwater (Mr. Conservative, who defined
conservatism in the 1960s) and Ronald Reagan would cause people to call them
RINOs and when they couldn't win a place on a general ballot because
they're not far right wing enough, you KNOW that there is something
drastically wrong with the Republican Party. As Sen. Carl Schurz (R-Missouri,
1869-75), said (as I quoted above): "My country, right or wrong. When right,
keep it right; when wrong, put it right." My party is going WAY wrong, and I
am trying to put it right.
To "Furry1993" unfortunately you are wrong. The Republican party has
been hijacked by Progressives, just like the Democrat party. The only
difference between them is how fast they are marching towards socialism. The
Tea Party and other similar groups are trying to get the Republican Party to
return to its conservative roots.You may want to caucus for the
Democrats because they could be more aligned with your values. The point I was
making is that if you don't feel that your voice is being heard by the
Republican party, maybe there is another political party that does match your
values. Just because you were a Republican in 1969 does not mean you have to
remain a Republican today.To quote Ronald Reagan (and others) "I
didn't leave the Democratic Party. The party left me". If the party is
no longer what you believe in, what is holding you there?
@RedShirt 12:56 p.m. Feb. 11, 2014You realize, don't you (since
I've said it often enough) that I'm a mainstream Republican and have
been a Republican since 1969 when I turned 21 years of age and became eligible
to vote. why do you think I would have any interest in what is going on in a
caucus or primary for the Democrat party? As to why I stick with the
Republicans when they have been hijacked to the far right fringes and only the
far right fringe-dwellers have any say in what happens -- I am echoing the
thoughts of Sen. Carl Schurz (R-Missouri, 1869-75), who said: "My country,
right or wrong. When right, keep it right; when wrong, put it right." My
party is going WAY wrong, and I am trying to put it right.
Witness Chris Stewart sending books to the delegates. Witness the chances of a
restaurant meal for delegates in the caucus-convention system versus a
restaurant meal for voters once the race is past convention.Candidates
might offer donuts and hot chocolate while campaigning after convention, but
there are not too many sit-down meals after convention. It could be argued that
rather than reducing the influence of money, the caucus-convention system
actually is the right-sized playground for it, at least the right-sized
playground for gift-giving.
Some have spoken of bribes. I don't know whether it classes as bribery, but
it is the giving of gifts in the hopes of receiving votes. It seems to happen
more before convention than after, for the candidate often doesn't have
enough money to buy something for all the voters, but does have enough to buy
something when the number of electors is reduced to just the delegates.
Breakfast is served in the name of meeting the candidate. Is that akin to a
bribe? If the candidate didn't think it would do some good, he or she
wouldn't be buying those breakfasts. And, the delegate does have a tendency
to consider the breakfast a nice gesture and to accept the goodwill as reason to
vote for the candidate. It's hardly an outright bribe, but it is the
influence of money.
I don't live in Utah, so I've no skin in the debate...but if Big Money
is the major concern in a conventional primary system, why not limit Big Money
itself? Curbing the effects of Big Money is healthier for democracy all around,
and not just in Utah.
VST... to answer your question, with a question "why don't you go ask
the democrats?, they allow ANYONE to vote in their primaries".
2 bits...I do have proof, I have actually seen the number of
"invites" delegates get by the candidates to "her" their views
while eating at a restaurant or some shindig.I have seen the items
sent to delegates to persuade them that they are the "right"
choice...So yes, Delegates are "bribed" before the
convention is held.Not saying "Count my Vote" is the best
way, but from my understanding the current caucus system Utah employs is the
only one of it's kind in the 50 states... If not Count my Vote, maybe
changes to the current system is in order.The major problem right
now is that independents is the largest group of voters. Most lean right, but
they are fed up with the State GOP and how they run things, but can not get the
current "tea party" mojo off the table.So if you are
independent and want to vote for a person that does not get one of the position
for the party, then they "Can't vote".Why is Utah GOP
so afraid of open primaries? why do they limit their caucus meetings to
"members" only? hmmm..
2 bits, I did vote in the last primary and I would like to to choose
from the 5-6-7 or however many choose to run. The outcome may not change, but
in 2014 this is the way we should be electing our representatives.
To "Furry1993" if you are so concerned about your voice being heard and
represented by the vote of the caucus representative at the convention, then why
don't you either run for caucus representative or else get to know the
people that you caucus with? Another option is to go to the caucus event for
another political party. If you don't like the Democrat canidate, maybe
you can go to the Republican caucus meeting, or the Libertarian, or the
Communist. That is the great thing about this country. You have your choice of
political parties, and you probably can find one more to your liking.
Maverick,RE: "They decide who to vote for based on the bribes
they receive from special interest groups"...Do you have any
actual evidence or proof that is true?Or do you think just because
you say it... or heard it somewhere... it's true?===I think this bribing convention delegates is conspiracy theory hooowie...I've never been a delegate, but I know several people who have, and
I have two brothers who have and a nephew who has... and none of them have
received any bribes.Is there even proof of ONE delegate getting
bribed???And yet people like Maverick spout it like it's actual
fact (just because they say it).===Who out there
actually KNOWS of a bribe being given to a delegate?? Not your friend. Or a
friend of someone who told you he heard it happened (classic urban legend
spreading format). But it was actually YOU (not a hearsay person) who got
bribed with money at the convention or the caucus meeting.If that
person is out there... maybe I'll listen to Maverick's rantings a
little more credibility. But if not....===Last post
BTW... have a great day.
Buy my vote?Sounds like the motto our delegates live by. They decide who to vote for based on the bribes they receive from special
interest groups. My voice/vote doesn't matter. I want my voice to matter.
Get rid of the ridiculous caucus.
Homer1,I am being completely honest about the caucus and convention
system.I don't know how much "Gaming" goes on there.
I've never personally witnessed a caucus meeting that was
organized enough to be "Gamed" by any person, or any ward, or any other
boogeyman.===Re "those accustomed to this power and
privilege"...You seem to think this is a coronation of some
powerful group of people who represent your neighborhood every year at
convention. I have never seen anyone elected (or even volunteer) who was a
delegate the last time. So this conspiracy of a group of high-influence people
going to convention every year... is just bogus whooey (at least in my
neighborhood).===I'm starting to wonder if you have
ever actually been to a caucus meeting... have you??Because they are
NOTHING like you describe in your conspiracy theory.===About the Ward-conspiracy-theory...So what if people from the same
ward attend the caucus meeting... they are from the same neighborhood...
naturally they would be there.Most of the people who volunteered and
were elected to be delegates from my neighborhood were non-lds or inactive (if
Supporters of the present caucus system need to be honest in this debate and
acknowledge the political gaming and silly neighborhood and ward stuff that goes
on, allowing very interested people to exert a very disproportionate influence
on the early candidate selection in our state politics.You might
think it's just allowing local grassroots politics to play a role, but in
reality, you have to see that it is a role way out of proportion in the entire
political system. Count Your Vote will reduce the power that I believe is out
of balance and maybe that seems worth fighting about for those accustomed to
this power and privilege. But, I support this realignment of political
influence in the state.
Before you comment, ask yourself... "Did I vote in the 2013 primary"?
Did I vote in my 2012 Primary?If you are in the 94% who
didn't... just how important do you REALLY think your individual vote
is?===The only function of the Convention is to narrow
the field to the top-2 most viable candidates (to face-off in the party
primary). Period.The function of the Caucus meeting is to get
people involved and informed, at a grass-roots level, not by national
advertisers or party officials, but by your neighbors, who are the only people
who have a right to speak at your caucus meeting.The caucus allows
you and your neighbors to pick delegates to Conventions. Where they will help
narrow the field to the top-2 who will face-off in the party primary (WHERE YOU
INDIVIDUALLY VOTE AGAIN).===You individually vote 3
times:-Your caucus meeting-Your party primary-The general
election.How many of these are you actually taking advantage of
now???If you actually vote in none of them.... How sincere are you
REALLY about having your individual vote count?
People like Furry, who say that their vote doesn't count are just funny, or
uninformed.We already have a party primary. It just happens after
convention.I don't know if they are aware of this (less than
10% of Utahns seem to be aware of this)... but we already have a party-primary
(in which every individual vote counts). It happens after Convention. IF you want your individual vote to count... VOTE IN YOUR PRIMARY (only
6% of registered voters turned out to the municipal primary election in 2013).
So obviously this isn't a big deal to 94% of Utahns.... just doing away
with the convention seems to be all they care about. I don't get it!===The ONLY difference (IF we do away with the Convention
and caucus meetings) is... everybody will be on the party-primary ballot
(instead of the top-2). That's the ONLY difference.Your
individual vote IS counted in the party-primary (but it already is... that is
the point I'm trying to get across). You will just be able to vote for
people not in the top-2. But I seriously doubt that will change the final
With "Count My Vote", who chooses which candidates appear on the ballot?
You don't. I don't. The citizens of Utah have no input. The
"party elite" chooses who will appear on the ballot. The "party
elite" decides who is good enough to ride along with the other "good old
boys". The "party elite" decide who they have enough hooks in to
make those candidates jump when they say jump.If that's what
you want, then, by all means, support "Count My Vote". On the other
hand, if you want to elect a delegate from your precinct who actually talks to
all of the candidates and verifies that the candidate that he votes for meets
the qualifications of the precinct, then reject "Count My Vote". We live in a Democratic Republic. The caucus is part of that system.
"Count My Vote" has nothing to do with a Democratic Republic. Party
"Bigwigs" do the choosing. How is that part of a Democratic Republic?
When did a Party get power over the people? But, if that's what you want,
support "Count My Vote".
I do not understand the notion that the caucus system allows a poor person to
run for office any easier than a primary system. The way I see it, money is
the only way to be elected to public office.
This writer must not have attended any of the caucuses I attended. They were
nonsensical farces run by extremists who shouted anyone more moderate into
Oh please, these arguments have been debunked time after time after time.Why should my vote go to some delegate? Let my voice be my own and not
some delegate who is being bribed.
You may not need a big bankroll to run in the caucas system, but you need to say
the right things to the extremists who run the caucuses or your campaign is
When I go to the polls and cast a vote I know, whether or not my candidate wins,
that my vote counts and will be counted. When I go to a caucus, I have no idea
for whom the delegate selected by the caucus will vote, and have no way to know
whether my concerns will be raised and discussed, and/or whether my position
will be supported. Most likely, my vote in the caucus will not support my
position and concerns -- it will not in fact count. I want my vote to COUNT.
That is why I am supporting "Count My Vote", why I will sign the
petition to get it on the ballot, and why I will vote for its passage. I want my
vote, and the votes of all people in Utah, to count. They don't with the