Iowa is home to many things: Corn, livestock and small towns. It is also home to caucuses for Democratic and Republican presidential candidates. Caucuses differ from simply casting a ballot in the election. It’s more time consuming because attendees discuss candidates, pick convention delegates and deal with state party business.
Locations for caucusing night on Saturday, Feb. 1, are the following: Prairie City Community Center in Prairie City, the Reasnor Fire Station in Reasnor and Monroe Elementary in Monroe, all starting around 7 p.m.
During Democratic caucuses, participants break into groups who publicly declare their support for a candidate. If the number of supporters in a group is less than 15-percent, those group members must chose to either join another candidate’ group or not participate at all. Once groups are determined, the votes are then decided by running the number of support each candidate received through a criteria that determines final votes of each county’s final analysis.
During Republican caucuses, they are a little different. They still gather support groups, however. Each candidate is given a chance for a brief speech, which leads to privately marking ballots. Next, votes are counted and sent out by local organizers.
Iowa is a very fortunate state with a unique say in politics. Iowa is one a select few amount of states that hold a caucus, giving Iowans an extremely interesting opportunity that many take advantage of. It also is very intriguing to outsiders because Iowa is simply the first state in the nation to show its support for candidates, leaving the rest of the nation to await our decision.
by Tyler Foster