The day after Super Tuesday seems perfect to bring forth the way the primary and caucus system in Washington is structured. It’s confusing yet so important to understand. First, the state holds both primaries and caucuses. The caucuses are held this Saturday, February 9 and the primaries are held on February 19. The Republican party has chosen to have 1/2 of its delegates determined based on the results of the caucus and 1/2 of its delegates determined based on the results of the primary. The Democratic party, has opted for 100% of its delegates to be assigned based on the caucus. This means that the Democratic primary has no significance when it comes to who Washington delegates will vote for at the Convention. If you really care, you must attend the caucus and there are required steps for how to be invited to the caucus. For those unfamiliar with a caucus, attendees vote in rounds for their candidate. As a candidate loses a round, he or she is eliminated until one candidate remains (Note: this is an oversimplification). In West Virginia yesterday, the caucus rounds resulted in a three way tie. in order to ensure that Romney did not win, McCain supporters threw their votes to Huckabee, resulting in Huckabee’s West Virginia win. Not what we typically think of when we envision our voting system, but many states hold caucuses instead of primaries and it’s important to understand what that means… and to make your vote count.
For more information on voting in Washington visit: https://www.secstate.wa.gov/elections/