Wednesday, February 06, 2008

It's obvious, isn't it?

Given the record turnout for the caucuses and the palpable excitement, it's obvious that this year Idaho Democrats have their best shot in years at gaining seats in the state legislature. If any decent D candidate is thinking about running, this is the year to do it, especially if Obama get the Democratic nomination.

Every office in Ada County ought to be held by Democrats as well. This year could be a turning point. I think that good candidates typically don't run because they think they have no chance to win. If the Ds can start to gain ground in the legislature, that will help attract good, willing candidates. More Ds will mean that the Democratic message will spread further and will attract more votes.

I don't expect Republicans to switch and vote D. It's entirely possible that independants will vote D. It's also possible that demoralized Ds who stay home and don't vote will become energized and get to the polls. That alone will help substantially.

This could be a good year for Idaho Democrats.

6 comments:

Gem State Avenger said...

Long time lurker, first time poster. Last night's record crowd should not be interpreted as a sign of growing strength but a symptom of the State Democratic Party's fundamental weakness; a lack of precinct infrastructure. Precinct level caucuses similar to the ones they hold in Iowa are more intimate and conducive to networking, growing volunteers and fostering participation. Idaho's style of caucusing makes the participant feel like cattle. I wonder how many potential volunteers from Kuna or Meridian were lost last night simply because they were not able to cue up before 6PM like the north-enders, many of whom live within a 10 minute drive of Qwest Arena. If Idaho Democrats are serious about winning legislative districts west of 5 Mile then it's time to switch to a presidential election mechanism more conducive to building precinct level grass roots infrastructure; ideally a precinct caucus or in lieu of that a presidential primary that challenges the activist to work on a precinct level.

untame said...

Caucuses in general, at no matter what level, exclude people. I could have voted yesterday morning on my way to the airport, but I was out of town and unable to attend the caucus. So I had no say in Idaho's choice for a Democratic candidate. Period. That's wrong.

IdahoRocks said...

Although small, we had independent Republicans at our caucus voting for Obama because they didn't like Clinton or the Republican candidates. Yes, Boundary County is small with only 7 pecincts, but it's also like a microcosm of Idaho in many ways. I think that the swift-boat roviators of the R-party would love Hillary to be the candidate because she's such a perfect target and always has been. But Obama is different, different in ways that, I think, the media hasn't even fathomed yet. Like, we're not really into dynasties, or, we like them for the short term, but we also love to see them fall.... After 20+ yrs. of Bush/Clinton, it may well be time for change....

alan said...

Caucusing at the county level doesn't work well in Ada County when there are huge turnouts, or in other counties, like Boise County, that cause people to have to travel long distances.

On the other hand, caucusing at a precinct level has its own problems. Lack of precinct captains is one. Another is that many precincts would have just 1 or 2 or 3 folks show up.

I don't know what the argument is for having a caucus over a voting election. Maybe someone can explain it.

Boy, I do agree that Hillary will jazz up the opposition if she's the nominee. I'm feeling pretty good about Obama's chances, now that it's even, Hillary is having money problems, and the next states seem to favor Obama. He could catch a wave.

slfisher said...

I disagree with you that all Ada County positions should be held by Democrats. I think it's important to have Democrats all through Idaho, because otherwise the urban-rural dichotomy between Ada and the rest of the state gets conflated with the Democratic-Republican dichotomy.

alan said...

slf, I wasn't saying that Dems ought to be only in Ada County. I agree that they ought to all over the state. I was saying that there seems to be no reason why every office in Ada can't be Dem. (But, let's save Sen Andreason's seat to the last one the Dems get. He's a good, reasonable moderate R.)