Summit County political parties to host caucuses to select political delegates
Editor’s note: This story has been updated to correct that people do not have to be registered Democrats to attend the Democratic caucus — only to vote at the event. The times and locations of the caucuses also have been corrected in the event information box.
FRISCO — On Saturday, March 7, the Summit County Democrats and Summit County Republicans will host caucuses to select delegates for county assembly, U.S. senate positions and other political seats as well as suggest platform planks.
To vote in a party’s caucus, you must be a member of that political party, but interested guests can attend either caucus, according to Summit County party chairs.
In Summit County there are 6,131 registered Democrats, 3,883 registered Republicans and 9,790 unaffiliated voters, according to Summit County Clerk & Recorder Kathleen Neel.
The Republican caucus will be held at 10 a.m. at the Summit County Community and Senior Center, 83 Nancy’s Place in Frisco. The Democratic caucus will be held at 2 p.m. at Summit Middle School, 158 School Road in Frisco.
“This is step one for people to be elected to the county assembly as well as the multicounty assembly,” Summit County Republicans Chairman Mike Tabb said. “It’s a great way for citizens to be involved on both sides of the aisle.”
Tabb said he doesn’t expect a huge turnout because the primary already determined presidential nominations but that the caucus is important for determining other seats. Tabb said the major seats the Republican caucus will determine include delegates for the state assembly seat for Colorado House District 61, currently represented by Democrat Julie McCluskie; the seat for Colorado Senate District 8, currently represented by Republican Bob Rankin; and the U.S. 2nd Congressional District seat, currently represented by Democrat Joe Neguse.
Tabb said he doesn’t believe there will be any meaningful primary nominations for an opponent to Cory Gardner, who is a Republican.
Summit County Democratic Caucus
• When: 2 p.m., Saturday, March 7
• Where: Summit Middle School, 158 School Road, Frisco
• There will be supervised child activities for attendees.
Summit County Republican Caucus
• When: 10 a.m., Saturday, March 7
• Where: Summit County Community and Senior Center, 83 Nancy’s Place, Frisco
Summit County Democrats Chairwoman Patricia McLaughlin said the Democratic caucus has four main goals: to select delegates for U.S. Senate positions to go the county assembly March 25, to elect two people to serve on the precinct committee for each of the 20 precincts in Summit County, to suggest platform planks and to ask for volunteers to act as election judges.
“The reason for caucusing is, No. 1, to start the process of putting someone on the ballot for the Democrats to replace Cory Gardner,” McLaughlin said. “In addition to that, the caucus starts the platform process so people who want to put something on the platform submit ideas.”
McLaughlin also said the party will consider five U.S. Senate candidates: Andrew Romanoff, John Hickenlooper, Stephany Rose Spaulding, Erik Underwood and Trish Zornio. While she said she doesn’t expect these candidates to appear in person Saturday, there will be a surrogate that will speak on their behalf and read literature from the candidates.
McLaughlin said the main topics Democrats in Summit County care about are health care and the environment, so the surrogates likely will address these topics. Although a presidential candidate will not be discussed, McLaughlin said the caucus remains an important event for Summit County voters.
“It’s their opportunity to really have a voice in which candidates will end up on the ballot,” McLaughlin said.
The caucuses use a 15% vote threshold to select delegates for the primary ballot. The nonpresidential primary is June 30.
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