Tuesday, March 02, 2004

And now, unleash the dogs of democracy ...

Big Margins in Key States Assure Kerry the Nomination
Senator John Kerry blazed to victories in Democratic primaries from New York to California today, according to early returns and surveys of voters leaving the polls, effectively capturing his party's presidential nomination and setting up an eight-month general election battle between President Bush and Mr. Kerry, the senator from Massachusetts.
and from the local paper
... [Caucus] Turnout was heavy, estimated at well over twice the 12,000 who turned out in 2000. DFL Party Chairman Mike Erlandson said it was the best caucus showing since the Vietnam era. At his own caucus, attendance was 177, compared to seven people four years ago.

The war starts Thursday with a deluge of Bush attack ads. It will be one hell of a campaign. Most of us have been keeping our powder dry, waiting for the nominee.

I attended my first ever caucus (DFL) in Minnesota. The traffic was backed up for about a mile and most of us parked 1/4 to 1/2 mile away from the school. Inside the school rooms were packed. Kerry won handily in our precinct. There was little sign of surprise, nor of either celebration or disappointment. It was merely the start of a vast struggle.

I did get to see the Minnesota DFL caucus in action. I now understand why the state party has such a bizarre collection of resolutions and "planks". By the time I left, fairly early in the evening, the residual group would have passed a resolution mandating lifetime employment and shutting down all trade with the rest of the world. I can see why democrats elected in Minnesota almost always win without the party's endorsement.

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