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‘If they’re getting hijacked, it’s because people aren’t participating’
by Jenniffer Wardell | Clipper Staff Writer
Mar 08, 2012 | 1443 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
KENDALYN HARRIS, a Republican caucus ambassador, encouraged people to make their voices heard at their upcoming precinct caucuses.
KENDALYN HARRIS, a Republican caucus ambassador, encouraged people to make their voices heard at their upcoming precinct caucuses.
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There’s a chance to make your voice heard long before the voting starts, but most people aren’t taking it.

Precint caucuses, set for March 13 for Democrats and March 15 for Republicans, help determine the candidates that will be seeking those votes later in the election. Kendalyn Harris, a caucus ambassador for the Republican Party, said that anyone who feels that candidates have become too extremist needs to get involved here.

“If they’re getting hijacked, it’s because people aren’t participating,” said Harris, speaking to the Bountiful Rotary recently. “It’s important for everyone to get out on caucus night. That way, we’re not just represented by fringe groups.”

Though the caucuses don’t actually choose the candidates, they do choose the representatives from each precinct who will go on to help choose candidates on both the county and state level.

An average precinct will choose five county delegates and three state delegates. Anyone can be nominated (or nominate themselves) to be a potential delegate, who are then voted on by everyone attending the meeting. If the person in charge doesn’t have each of the candidates get up and briefly discuss their stance on current issues, Harris said that it’s the responsibility of the other people at the meeting to make sure it happens.

“It’s so important,” she said. “That way, you can help choose someone whose values align with yours.”

Harris, who has served as a delegate for her precint, felt that it was a “sacred trust” to be the voice of her neighbors.

“I had a responsibility,” she said. “They were trusting in me.”

Many of her neighbors, however, didn’t make the effort to find out who they were putting their trust in. There are approximately a thousand voters in each precint, and Harris said that most of the Republican caucus meetings she’s been at have only about 60 attendees.

“It’s an average number, but it’s not a good number,” she said.

To find the meeting time and location for the Democrat caucus in your precinct, visit davisdems.org. To find the Republican meeting time and location, visit www.utgop.org/davis. You must be a registered as a Republican to vote in their caucus (bringing your voter registration card will make entry faster), but anyone is welcome to vote at the Democrat caucus.

jwardell@davisclipper.com
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