Boone County Democrats favored Barack Obama by a wide margin in their first ever Democratic Caucus held Saturday afternoon, Feb. 9, in the St. Edward Public Library.
A final tally of the 76 participants showed a margin of nearly two to one, with 49 participants favoring Obama, 26 favoring Hillary Clinton and one undecided.
Statewide, Democrats favored Obama over Clinton in the caucuses by a margin of 68 percent to 32 percent. The Boone County caucus opened with a welcome by Francis Whidden and introductions, the Democratic party members elected Kate Sullivan of Cedar Rapids as chairperson for the caucus and Virginia Whidden of St. Edward as secretary.
“This is a tremendous show of participation, and we appreciate all of you who took the time to come out today,” said Sullivan, who reminded the crowd that the caucus was open only to registered Democrats,
although persons of other affiliations were welcome to observe.
Mrs. Whidden gave a PowerPoint presentation about the caucus process, and the platforms of the two candidates were then reviewed. Sullivan reminded those attending that the caucus does not replace the primary election. Residents of all nine Boone County precincts were welcome to participate.
LeRoy Niemann of St. Edward presented his views on the two front-runners after attending rallies for each one earlier this week. The Democrats then separated themselves based on their support for either Clinton or Obama, with undecided party members in a third location. After discussions within their groups, a tally was taken.
To close out the activities, Mrs. Sullivan reminded the Democrats that the Boone County Democratic Convention will be held in June, 2008. All caucus participants were designated as county delegates. Hank Thieman of Petersburg, treasurer of the Boone County Democrats, announced that the party currently does not have a county chairman. Anyone who would like to volunteer for the position is welcome to do so.
Mrs. Sullivan also introduced herself as a candidate for the 41st District seat in the Nebraska Legislature.