Iowa Caucus 2012
"The only sure bulwark of continuing liberty is a government strong enough to protect the interests of the people, and a people strong enough and well enough informed to maintain its sovereign control over its government." Franklin Roosevelt (1938)
I just finished watching the Iowa caucus for the first time and I am proud to live in America, where the citizens are involved in the decisions that affect this country, and where civil rights were exercised beautifully. To the caucus virgin and an organizer at heart, the process seems very rudimentary, but, this caucus is so pivotal to the presidential candidates and is a process that began in 1972. In 1980, Republicans started the straw poll tradition and it stuck. These caucuses are followed closely by the media, and can be an important factor in determining who drops out of the race and who remains.
It is great to see everyday Americans come together in a common spirit, and exercise their rights to determine their next leader. They write out the names of the candidate on little, pieces of paper, and toss it into a bucket. The votes are taken into a room, and counted one by one by a small group of people. Simple. No technology. Just regular Americans doing things the same way since 1972. The votes are counted not once, but three times to make sure they are correct, and the results are announced at the caucus. After that, the chair person leading the caucus or the secretary calls the county to record the votes in their area. This is repeated about 1774 times in Iowa tonight, while the media keeps a detailed watch on the results as they come in.
Tonight, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum tie for the top spot, followed closely by Ron Paul, with about 50% of precincts reporting. It is a very tight and close race, and the results will be fully in hopefully by midnight. I am going to bed :)