Hawaii Democrats set for irrelevant caucuses
Hawaii Democrats will meet on Feb. 19, two weeks after 25 states will have chosen the nominee in primary elections or caucuses.
DEMOCRATS in Hawaii cheered loudly or groaned silently after last Thursday's Iowa caucuses and will resume their sideline reactions after tomorrow's New Hampshire presidential primary election. Unfortunately, by the time they cast their own votes in caucus, their party's presidential nominee almost certainly will have been chosen, making their votes irrelevant.
Of special disappointment to many will be Hawaii's lack of meaningful participation in the campaign for Barack Obama, the Honolulu-born U.S. senator from Illinois. U.S. Rep. Neil Abercrombie stumped for Obama in Iowa and called his victory in that state "overwhelming." Two dozen Obama supporters watched the returns on television at Abercrombie's campaign headquarters.
The scramble for early primary elections and caucuses has resulted in history's quickest process of picking presidential nominees. Democratic caucuses in Nevada and a primary in South Carolina are scheduled later this month.
On Feb. 5, primary elections in 15 states, including New York and California, and caucuses in seven others can be expected to decide the winners in both parties. Michigan and Florida were stripped of delegates for scheduling primaries before Feb. 5.
Hawaii's Democratic caucuses will come two weeks after Super Duper Tuesday, too late to make a difference. They will be all about which 29 Democrats to choose as delegates to the Democratic National Convention in Denver six months later. Those wanting to make the trip will know which horse to choose before meeting in caucus.
GOP caucuses in Hawaii are scheduled from Jan. 25 to Feb. 2 in all but two of the state's 41 House districts, giving rare relevance to Hawaii Republicans.
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