Democratic caucus nears in Routt County

Registered Routt County residents can hear about issues, speeches Tuesday

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If you go

What: Routt County Democratic Caucus

When: 6:30 p.m. Tuesday

Where: Steamboat Precincts 3, 4, 6, 7 and 11 to 18 at the Colorado Mountain College gym; West Routt Precincts 2 and 5 at the Hayden Public Library; Oak Creek and Stagecoach Precincts 8 and 9 at the South Routt Community Center; Yampa Precinct 10 at Yampa Town Hall; and North Routt Precinct 1 at a private home at 27550 Routt County Road 64.

For more

Find your precinct number and caucus location at http://pollingplaces.raiseyourvote.com or call the Routt County Clerk and Recorder’s Office at 970-870-5556. For additional information or caucus questions, call 970-870-2896.

Democratic Party Chairwoman Catherine Carson said this week that guests are welcome to attend the caucus but that only registered voting Democrats are eligible to actively participate. People must have been a resident in the precinct for at least 30 days, have been registered to vote in the precinct for 29 days and be a registered Democrat for no less than two months prior to the caucus.

— Registered Routt County Democrats will hear short speeches from political candidates and their surrogates and push for issues to be added to the party platform during party caucuses Tuesday night. But nothing will have a more direct bearing on the outcome of any local political race than the preference poll that will divvy up 100 delegates among candidates for the party’s nomination to succeed Nancy Stahoviak in County Commissioner District 1.

South Routt School Board President Tim Corrigan and Oak Creek Mayor Nikki Knoebel are vying for a place on their party’s June 26 primary ballot in that race. In order to have their names placed directly on the ballot, they must pick up at least 30 percent of the delegates. Should either one fail to get the support of 30 percent of the delegates but reach the 15 percent threshold, they still could try to petition their way onto the ballot.

Knoebel and Corrigan are scheduled to speak at the Steamboat super caucus involving 12 precincts, Democratic Party Chairwoman Catherine Carson said Friday, and the nitty-gritty of grass-roots politics will play out within each caucus meeting

“It’s the epitome of grass-roots politics,” Carson said. “It’s so important. It’s a chance to sit down with your neighbors (and share views), and that’s what precincts are — they’re neighborhoods. You’re choosing delegates who will be your voice for the county assembly and then district assembly and the state conventions.”

It’s in each precinct meeting that individual votes ultimately will determine the number of delegates committed to the two candidates. Each precinct is allotted varying numbers of delegates based on the number of registered Democrats living within the precinct, Carson said. But the results of the preference poll won’t be formalized until the county assembly meets March 31 at the Steamboat Springs Community Center.

Incumbent Routt County Commissioner Doug Monger expects to spend Tuesday at the Hayden precincts, Carson said. And county Commissioner Diane Mitsch Bush, who is not up for re-election but is seeking the new House District 26 seat in the state Legislature, will be represented with a video speech. She will be campaigning in Eagle County that night, Carson said.

Also represented at the Steamboat caucuses will be state Rep. Sal Pace, of Pueblo, who hopes to oppose Republican congressman Scott Tipton for his District 3 Congressional seat in the general election. A representative of President Barack Obama also will speak.

Finally, there’s a possibility that a Democratic candidate for Colorado Senate District 8 will announce his or her intentions Tuesday night.

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205 or email tross@SteamboatToday.com

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