The Durham Democratic Women held their "Raucous Caucus" at the downtown library last night. It's modeled on any o fthe several state nominating caucuses that have already been held - "delegates" arrive, announce which candidate they're supporting, and gather in a part of the room with other like minded folks. If you're so inclined, you can address the gathered masses and explain why you're supporting who you're supporting, and why you think everybody else should change their mind and support the candidate of your choice.
I was a bit late, and so missed most of the speeches. No matter. At this point in the process, i'm still uncommitted, and not because i don't know enough about the candidates to make a choice, either. I fully intend to support whichever candidate wins the Democratic nomination. And fortunately, Mandy Carter made that exact point during the evening: regardless of who you are supporting now, keeping the Republicans out of the White House come November is the most important task.
I am disappointed that even this early in the primary campaign (it's not even February yet) most of the candidates have withdrawn from the race. I don't think that's particularly healthy for the party or for democracy at large, but i definitely don't have a solution. One change that does make sense to me is getting rid of "winner take all" primaries. I'm not a fan of winner take all in the general election, but i understand why we have it. For party primaries, though, it makes no sense. Why shouldn't three or four candidates bring delegates to the nominating convention and bargain their support for inclusion of certain planks in the party platform? The way the process has
involved evolved is entirely too "cult of personality" for my taste.
But that's another rant.
Results from last night were (rounded off, as i wasn't writing things down) uncommitted 15%, Hillary Clinton 30%, Barack Obama 55%. I got the impression that many of the uncommitted caucus goers were Edwards supporters, and a few were Kucinich supporters.
Also worth mentioning, both Hampton Dellinger and Dan Besse, candidates for the Lt. Governor nomination, stopped by. I had a chance to chat with each of them briefly. I'm still not ready to endorse a candidate for this office, but both of these candidates appear to be capable and committed progressive Democrats, and i'm glad to see such high quality people seeking this seat.