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Presidential caucuses coming soon

Rather than having a presidential primary this year, Kansas is having presidential caucuses.

Republican Party

The Kansas Republican Party will have caucuses in 93 counties, including Marion County.

The Marion County caucus begins at 10 a.m. March 10 in the Marion Community Center at the Marion City Building, 203 N. Third St. The doors will open at 8 a.m. for voter sign-in.

Voting in the caucus is limited to Kansans who were registered as Republicans on Friday. Each voter must show a state-issued photo identification card, such as a driver’s license.

When the caucus begins, volunteers representing the presidential candidates will present information about their candidate for up to 10 minutes each. When presentations are completed, sign-in will end and caucus-goers will vote by secret ballot. The caucus chair will announce the results of the local caucus after voting is complete and ballots are counted.

Kansas has 40 delegates to the Republican National Convention, which will select the party’s presidential candidate. It takes 1,144 delegates to win the nomination.

Of Kansas’ delegates, 25 will be awarded proportionally to the statewide caucus vote totals. Three delegates in each congressional district will be awarded to the candidate with the most votes in that district. The final three delegates will be awarded to the candidate with the most votes statewide.

The Kansas Republican Party encourages electioneering at caucuses. That may take the form of T-shirts, buttons, stickers, signs, literature, or other displays of support for a candidate.

Democratic Party

The Kansas Democratic Party will have a caucus on April 14. There will be one local caucus in each Kansas Senate district.

Registration will begin at 1 p.m., and the caucus will begin at 2 p.m. Locations will not be finalized until about March 1.

The caucus is open to any registered Democrat who will be 18 or older by the general election on Nov. 6. Voters who aren’t registered Democrats can register at the caucus and participate.

Caucus-goers will have 30 minutes to form into preference groups for the candidates they support. A candidate must have at least 15 percent support at this point to be a viable candidate continuing in the caucus. Caucus-goers will then have an opportunity to change preference groups before the groups select their delegates for the state party convention, which will select delegates to the national convention.

Kansas has 58 delegates to the Democratic National Convention. It takes 2,025 delegates to win the nomination.

Last modified Feb. 22, 2012

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