Saturday, February 09, 2008

It's a Revolution

From the Lincoln Journal Star:

Thousands of people statewide overflowed school gyms, sat in traffic and stood in groups on Saturday to be counted as part of Nebraska’s first Democratic presidential caucus.

Sen. Barack Obama was in tight race with Sen. Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination, with 24 delegates at stake in Nebraska.

In Douglas County, the state’s most populous county, an average of 1,000 people turned out at each of 15 caucus sites, said Eric Fought, spokesman for the state party.

Sarpy County had one caucus site for 28,000 registered Democrats, triggering traffic backups for miles and complaints from voters while changing the way officials conducted the caucus. …

Law enforcement shut down Highway 370 and the intersection leading into the site — a school cafeteria — because the area was packed with cars.

The influx of people was so massive that volunteers began collecting preference cards for people who preferred Obama or Clinton, then allowing them to leave. Traditional caucus procedures allow for more interaction, with supporters standing on either side of a room trying to persuade the undecided and not-so-sure supporters of other candidates to join them. …

The turnout was so high that officials in Douglas and Sarpy counties announced that they would delay the announcement of their results at least one-and-a-half hours.


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