Inexperienced caucus attendees, just like Precinct Officers who don’t know Roberts Rules of Order, usually can’t recognize rules violations even when they look right at them. The people doing it are so “nice” after all.
Is someone photographing the caucus report violating the rules? Or is it a violation to try to stop them?
If you don’t know the rules or the reasons or the background you have no basis to judge, but many people laboring in that lack of knowledge have made ill-advised judgments anyway. Several people have attempted to support Party officials they like, or side with, in open violation of rules of which they are completely ignorant for purposes they have not contemplated.
One may disagree with the rules, but there usually is a good reason for them.
Every Republican precinct caucus attendee has a RIGHT to the caucus record and no caucus chair has any right to prevent them making that record, photographically or any other way. Caucus Chairs, in fact, can’t make ANY rules. But if a person didn’t know what the rules were they might see a chair calmly making and breaking rules and think it seems “fair” and those who attempt to secure their rights under the rules might seem “unreasonable.”
If (and when) a County Executive Board wants to cheat on behalf of a candidate it is very easy if they can keep the caucus records secret. They can falsify (and have falsified) the election after either or both the precinct caucus and the county convention/district caucuses and, thereby, profoundly influence the Presidential nomination process through ballot fraud.
What you may not know is that we know, as a matter of absolute fact that this (among many other things) was done in numerous counties, including Snohomish and King, in 2008 on behalf of John McCain. What no one knows is the total extent of the 2008 cheating BECAUSE we don’t have a complete record of the caucuses. We also know that some of the same fraud is under way right now in the 2012 process.
Corrupt Republican Party officers withhold precinct caucus results to facilitate several kinds of cheating.
- the list of attendees with their straw poll vote and signature, and,
- The results of the elections of delegates and alternates with the signatures of the chair and secretary of the caucus.
If a corrupt County GOP has the only list of attendees, they can falsify the straw poll, as the Maine GOP did, this year.
If a corrupt County GOP has the only results of the elections of delegates and alternates they have the power to alter the election results, by:
- Inserting or removing names of the elected delegates or alternates,
- Fabricating entire caucus results, particularly in caucuses which no one attended,
- “Losing” results they regard as unfavorable so that elected delegates are not given their positions,
- Giving absent PCOs automatic delegate status despite lack of qualification.
The only defense against this kind of fraud is the open disclosure of the original results, the election results and the witnesses of that election. That’s WHY the 2012 rules give caucus attendees the RIGHT to copy those records.
Several people, speaking out in defense of the County “right to cheat” for secrecy suggest that the “privacy” of the caucus attendees justifies preventing transparency. I find the claim disingenuous. A short list of caucus attendees has no commerical value, except in the aggregate for the people who will have the names in any case, the Party itself. The GOP will be using them for fundraising and anyone else they sell it to, not the grassroots delegates simply trying to defend fair elections.