Iowa caucuses explained

With the caucuses now less the a day away, let us break down Iowa's unusual caucuses.

For the Democratic Party, caucuses form all around the state based upon specified precincts. Unlike the primaries, where voters pick candidates via ballots, caucuses form and ultimately pick one candidate. Caucuses take place at schools and libraries, and truly are groups of people whom convene and decide whom they like most. For example, one caucus may consist of 100 people. Within that caucus, one candidate will be selected by process of elimination. They use a 15% rule. People break up into the groups of whom they favor. The candidate must receive 15% of the vote. So, if there were 7 candidates, and 3 candidates received 20% each, and the other 4 candidates received 40% combined - but not one getting at least 15%, those people must then pick from the other 3 candidates.`So now, lets call the first three candidates A,B, and C. A ends up after the others were forced to re vote with 40%, B the same, and C now has only 20%. C is forced to re vote between the top 2. Now B has 55%, and A only %45. B wins. And then that county or precincts caucus sends their vote tally to their respective headquarters.

For the Republican Party, its a different story. Secret ballots determine delegates. "The vote determines which delegates, representing which candidates, will attend county conventions. There, delegates are chosen for state congressional district conventions, where delegate to national convention are picked.

The Republicans use a winner-take-all system. Whichever candidate wins the caucuses takes all of the delegates for the state."

I hope that helps as I saw that on CNN this and referenced another article i posted previously.

Here it is as explained in further detail by wiki "The Iowa caucus operates very differently from the more common primary election used by most other states (see U.S. presidential primary). The caucus is generally defined as a "gathering of neighbors." Rather than going to polls and casting ballots, Iowans gather at a set location in each of Iowa's 1784 precincts. Typically, these meetings occur in schools, churches, or public libraries. The caucuses are held every two years, but the ones that receive national attention are the presidential preference caucuses held every four years. In addition to the voting and the presidential preference choices, caucus-goers begin the process of writing their parties’ platforms by introducing resolutions. [1]

Unlike the first-in-the-nation New Hampshire primary, the Iowa caucus does not result directly in national delegates for each candidate. Instead, caucus-goers elect delegates to county conventions, who elect delegates to district and state conventions where the national convention delegates are selected.[citation needed]

The Republicans and Democrats each hold their own set of caucuses subject to their own particular rules that change from time to time. Participants in each party's caucuses must be registered with that party. Participants can change their registration at the caucus location. Additionally, 17-year-olds can participate, as long as they will be 18 years old by the date of the general election. Observers are allowed to attend, as long as they do not become actively involved in the debate and voting process.


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