La Crosse County Caucus

The county caucus was held in a meeting room on the third floor of Cartright Center, the UW-La Crosse student center. We were told the doors open at 1, and that they would be closed at 2. That meant that anyone arriving at 2:05 would be locked out from participating.

So we all showed up early. RoZ and I got on the limo for the short ride to the caucus and arrived with ample time to spare.

We were greeted at the door by a person asking us to sign in, and then milled around waiting for the meeting to start. At the front of the room was a whiteboard with the names of everyone in the county who had declared intention to be a national delegate for Bernie.

In the back of the room was a mobile whiteboard with a shorter list of names who hope to be Hillary delegates. I saw my old friend Vicky’s name at the top of the list.

The Rules of Politics told me that this was a time to schmooze with the other people at the meeting. But most of them were people we knew and had worked with on the local campaign. Political schmoozing just felt fake.

But there was one guy who was doing so. He seemed a bit doofy as he came around and chatted us up for a bit. I kept getting distracted by his t-shirt, which bore an image of Trump as an orange smurf. Can you take someone seriously who’s wearing that?

Eventually the clock struck two, and a woman came to the front of the room and called the meeting to order. I never did find out who she was, or who or what determined that she should be the one to run this caucus, but she did a fair and able job of what turned out to be a simple task.

The Hillary people disappeared to another room, and a roll call was taken of the names on the board. To advance to the CD caucus, you had to show up at this meeting. One or two national delegate candidates weren’t there, so their names were erased from the board.

But our job today was to elect a slate of 32 delegates to the CD caucus, and there were fewer than ten names on the board. The facilitator invited each person who intended to go to the CD caucus to add her/his name to the board.

After we got everyone in the room to commit to showing up at the Omni Center in two weeks, there were 31 names on the board. So we came up short of filling our allocated delegation. By a simple voice vote, this slate of CD delegates was elected. It wasn’t even 2:30, and we were ready to go home.

Apparently the Hillary people finished their job just as quickly, as Vicky was staffing the greeter’s table as we left. All I could do was to smile and say, “see you in a coupla weeks.”

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