I never really put much thought into the differences between a caucus and a primary. I figured they were the same. You know, go in to your voting precinct and vote for who you want to run for your party in the general election later that year. Little did I know caucuses are not run that way. It is more of a community event. I did not even know where the word caucus came from. Thanks to Wikipedia and Barack Obama’s amusing video, I have a better understanding of the term’s Native American heritage and how it functions in Iowa.
So basically the community comes together and break up into groups by who they wish to support. Someone counts the members of each group and through conversation (intelligent I hope), whittle the groups down until a majority choice emerge. No voting boxes, I do not think. Just people from the same party talking and sharing on why one person is a better choice than another. Seems like a wonderful platform for sharing concerns and strengthening the bonds of one’s party. How well it actually plays out may be a whole different level of reality. Regardless, it is something we Texans and many other states will never experience as this does not really scale well as I see it. I do like the principal of the idea, I wonder how it is actually handled in Iowa. I guess we will find out tonight.