Both political parties are now being criticized for not abandoning the election caucus system. I know that there are problems with the process, but I am glad they didn't abandon the caucus system.

Several years ago, I was asked to run for the Utah House of Representatives. After I was elected by the delegates at the county convention, I was shocked when I was told that to run a successful general election campaign I would have to raise at least $25,000. Fortunately, with our caucus system, getting 60 percent of my district delegates' votes at the convention, I had to finance only the general election.

The current option to the caucus system is an open primary. All candidates would have to finance a primary election, and then the winners would also have to finance a general election. So for the office I ran for, I would have had to raise about $50,000.

Had I known up front that I would have to finance both a primary and a general election, I definitely would not have agreed to run. The caucus system takes away some of the wealth advantage in elections. If someone would come up with a way to improve the system without raising the cost to the candidate, I would be in favor of doing that.

Fred Ash