“Historic turnout”

Posted on February 6, 2008 under minnesota

Here in Minnesota we had “historic turnout” for the DFL caucuses, which is lazy journalist shorthand for “unusual” (with the new social history, almost anything can be historic!).  Obama swept the state.  We had more than 200,000 voters come out statewide, which is, for instance, 3/4 of the population of St. Paul, or as many people as in Duluth and Rochester combined.  This beats the previous largest DFL turnout, 75,000 in 1972, when Minnesotans came out for Hubert Humphrey.*

At my precinct caucus location, lines were out the door, and my caucus itself was filled with about 300 of my neighbors.  Minnesota caucuses are sort of a hybrid of a caucus and a straw poll.  We cast binding votes for president, but we sit around and talk afterwards.  After submitting our presidential preference ballots (pieces of blank-on-one-side paper) we wrangled about delegates to the district convention (I’m one) and whether or not we should do walking sub-caucuses (which I think sounds like a zombie movie; we didn’t, thank heavens).  There were lots of familiar neighbors, and resolutions and points of order and speechifying and orneriness.  I love this kind of meeting.  Anyway, our totals for the presidential preference ballots were as follows.

Minneapolis (SD 62A) precinct 9-6:
Obama:  237
Clinton:  60
Edwards:  3
Gravel:  1
and somebody voted for Ron Paul, which made it a spoiled ballot.

*That was the history content of this post.  Hope you liked it!

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