The Hawaii Democratic caucus will take place tonight. I wasn't even aware that caucuses took place in Hawaii before this year. The Democratic presidential nominee has always seemed to have been determined before our scheduled caucus took place in past years.
We also (in my opinion) have never had a voice during past presidential primaries and past presidential elections. The election has always been determined before Hawaii's polls were closed. Even during the Bush/Gore election, our electorates did not count because we don't have enough of them to make a difference either way, even when there was a "so called tie".
During most elections, the President has been declared (by the media) by noontime here in Hawaii and since I am not a "morning person", I usually do my voting in the afternoon, again not that my vote would have counted if I voted in the morning.
Because of this, I have always been frustrated with the election process BUT this year is a historic year for Hawaii. This will be the first time that Hawai'i will actually have a voice in helping to select a presidential nominee. I feel pretty excited about being able to be a part of this process. It is the first time in a long time that I have felt a little hope about the future of our country. For more on being able to be a part of the process, check out Teachick's Persnickety Tutu blog on the subject of using our voices to vote to make a change.
We had Hillary's daughter, Chelsea here this weekend campaigning for her mother and since Barack's sister lives in Hawaii, she has been campaigning for her brother. We have also had lots of Obama adds on TV. The news media covered quite a few of the events this weekend. I was a little concerned with one of the interviews though. During an interview with an older woman from Maui, the woman made the comment that she was voting for Hillary because she thought her daughter was so pretty. My concern was not that she was voting for Hillary. Vote for Hillary, vote for Barack, just get out there and vote and be a part of the process, BUT it might be a little more important for the future of our country to vote on some actual issues rather than on if someone's daughter is pretty.
So, I am still not sure exactly what happens at a caucus meeting, but plan to be there tonight. Precinct registration begins at 6 or 6:30 p.m. tonight. The presidential preference poll starts at 7 pm.
Record turnout and long lines are predicted. The caucus turnout has never exceeded 5,000 people, but party officials believe that the turnout could be as high as 18,000, which would definitely overwhelm the volunteers. They say voting will take place between 7 and 7:30, but I am guessing it will be a much longer night. We have been promised that everyone in line will be able to cast a ballot. Twenty of the 29 Hawaii delegates will be determined tonight. The other nine are super delegates.
Depending on how late it lasts, I will update this post or post again tomorrow.