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One Man’s Experience on Caucus Night


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one-mans-experience-on-caucus-night.phpPower Line:

John Hinderaker

March 1, 2016


This year, I was asked to be the convener of (i.e., to preside over) my precinct’s Republican caucus, which took place tonight. I agreed, largely in hopes of making the caucus shorter. My wife served as the caucus’s secretary.


Republican turnout in our area was overwhelming, as it has been around the country. GOP caucuses are usually held in one high school; this year, there were overflow crowds at two high schools. Around 80 people showed up from our precinct. It was striking how many participants were new to the caucus process–a large majority, in fact, were caucusing for the first time. We assumed that most of these would be Trump voters, but that turned out not to be true.


The process in Minnesota was completely different this year. For the first time, the precinct caucuses were in effect a primary election, not just a straw poll. By later this evening, the votes will have been tabulated and the winner announced. The fact that votes were meaningful no doubt helped to drive turnout. We held the presidential vote first, and those who wanted to leave at that point were able to do so. Around a third did, but the rest stayed for the remainder of the caucus.




I was left feeling that, should the worst come–a Clinton-Trump race–our republic will survive whichever suboptimal administration may result. Americans stubbornly believe that they are free, no matter what liberals may tell them, and if you doubt it, just spend a few hours at a neighborhood caucus. It is good for the soul. Our democracy isn’t perfect, but it is strong. Strong enough, I think, to survive either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump with ease.

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