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Local Republicans prepare for Super Tuesday, poll vote

Posted: March 1, 2012 - 9:57pm

Peninsula Republicans will gather Tuesday in hopes clarifying just which candidate will be the nominee to challenge President Barack Obama in the country’s November general election.

Regional Republican coordinator Dale Bagley said the Alaska-wide presidential preference poll will be hosted from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, in a variety of locations on the Peninsula, including Nikiski, Sterling, Seward, Kasilof, Anchor Point and Homer. Kenai and Soldotna will have a unified location at Grace Brethren Church. 

“If they want to pick who the Republican nominee is going to be to challenge President Obama, this is their opportunity to come out and vote,” Bagley said.

He advised interested Republicans to attend whichever location is closest to them.

“It won’t be like when you vote in a primary with all the precinct places, it is just volunteers who are organizing this,” he said. “It is not being run through the clerk’s office or anything, which is the way it has always been.”

Bagley said Peninsula volunteers will call in local results to the state office on Tuesday shortly after the polls close at 8 p.m.

On March 10, local Republicans will reassemble for the district convention and pick the residents who will be sent to the state convention on April 26, 27 and 28 in Anchorage. Representatives will then be picked to go to the national convention.

Districts 33 and 34 — which will be numbered 28 and 29 after the new districts are set — will combine for the district convention at 8 a.m. at Grace Brethren Church on March 10. Bagley said he expects the convention to last until 4 p.m. The assembly will also put forth resolutions to take to the state convention.

“We going to try to use the voting (on Tuesday) to promote it so that maybe we can have a little better attendance than normal,” Bagley said.

Residents need to be a registered Republican to vote Tuesday, but can register on the spot if they are undeclared, independent, Democrat or any other party. Residents interested in volunteering to help with the caucus can call Bagley at 398-1865.

March 6 is the day commonly known across the country as Super Tuesday when 10 states host either a primary or a caucus.

Randy Ruedrich, state chairman of the Alaska Republican Party, said the state’s activities differ from traditional primaries, caucuses or straw polls.

“The preference poll actually binds 24 of our delegates who go to (the Republican National Convention) in Tampa in terms of who they are going to be voting for,” Ruedrich said. “So if a candidate wins 33 percent of the preference poll, they get eight delegates in Tampa. That’s why you want to go vote in a preference poll because it means something. A straw poll is a beauty pageant. This is real and it has an impact in Tampa in August.”

According the Associated Press, Mitt Romney took the Alaska caucus in 2008 with 43.7 percent of the vote. Mike Huckabee came in second with 21.9 percent and Ron Paul took third with 17.2 percent of the vote. John McCain took only 15.6 percent of the vote.

Bagley said he expects Paul, a Texas Congressman, to take Alaska.

Currently, Paul leads all Republicans in the state’s fundraising with $96,261, according to the most recent numbers available from the Federal Election Commission. Romney has collected $54,110 in Alaska.

In zip codes starting with 996 — all of the Kenai Peninsula as well as Kodiak, and the west side of Cook Inlet and much of the Matanuska-Susitna area — Paul leads the Republican field with $24,924 in campaign contributions. In the same area Romney has raised $2,425.

Total Alaska fundraising among Republicans totaled $226,536 outpacing Obama’s $159,447.

As of Thursday, Romney had 167 delegates to Rick Santorum’s 87, Newt Gingrich’s 32 and Paul’s 19. There are still 2,286 delegates at stake — 419 up for grabs Tuesday. It takes 1,144 delegates to nab the nomination.

Local Democrats will caucus at 9:30 a.m. on April 14 at the Challenger Learning Center in Kenai. Organizer Sharon Waisanen said the group will vote for a candidate — likely Obama — elect delegates to attend the Alaska State Democratic Convention in early May in Fairbanks, nominate candidates for officer positions and debate and vote on resolutions and changes to the party’s platform. 

Any voter who is a registered Democrat can participate in the caucuses. Other voters can also change their registration until the day of their district caucus to be eligible to participate, Waisanen said. Voter registration forms will be available at each caucus location.

“The 2012 Democratic Presidential District Caucuses aren’t about political ritual or simply re-nominating the President, it’s about Alaskans coming together to commit ourselves and our country to a path that creates more opportunity,” said Patti Higgins, chair of the Alaska Democratic Party, in a press release. “Success depends on involvement at the grassroots and we invite everyone to take part.”

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denali8 03/03/12 - 03:31 am
OMG, means obummer must go

OMG, means obummer must go

spwright 03/03/12 - 10:31 am
Ripping Each Other Apart

Yep ! Just let the Republican nominees Keep Ripping Each Other Apart, fight fight then fight some more.
Meanwhile back at the ranch ONLY 20% of Alaskans make the Time to VOTE.

Then the Un-Declared Independent Alaskans keep on believing that They Can Walk on Water & are More Holy than Thou & should NOT have to participate in Democracy & VOTE.

President Obama is just waiting in the wings to be
RE-ELECTED AGAIN ! Keep On Fighting amoungest each other ! This is Entertaining to Watch.

SPW "Airborne"

robert white
robert white 03/03/12 - 11:10 am

Can this country survive 4 more years of this guy? I realize it's his first job but give me a break!

Norseman 03/03/12 - 01:37 pm
Peoples memories are short.

Peoples memories are short. The previous 8 years of bush is what this President inherited.
Along with the fact that the Repubs emphatically stated from the getgo that they would do everything in their power to NOT COMPROMISE on one single issue. We have politicains from day one stating he hopes he fails.
How can we be successfull when we hope our country fails?
That mentality has no place here. That is something we expect from countries like Iran and North Korea. Not from the mouths of the most powerful Republican leaders.

cbeard 03/04/12 - 03:29 am
Give and take

There really isn't any room for Republican ideas in America anymore. I wish the party would abandon evangelicals and social conservatism causes because they just don't make sense. They've coalesced around this identity as a pseudo-Christian law machine that wants a republic oxymoronically based on governments not "interfering with" or helping anybody at all. The last time I checked there was already a pseudo-religious government fad going on (called Sharia law) and that's not doing too well for those people. Does America really need to stoop to a minority of religious people with low IQ scores just to secure votes? I long for being able to have political discourse which doesn't involve having to constantly fight to be able to be an equal person, I'd like to get to the part where we collectively make collective decisions, not decide who is "less collective" based on who somebody looks like, acts like. sounds like, what they do, what they believe, etc

A good start would be for the GOP to realize that fighting against gay marriage is a futile endeavor, and soon every American couple will become recognized by the law. That would cut out a good 30% of the Republican debate right there. Maybe they could use that space for actual solutions and discourse? I would sure appreciate being told what the difference between small government and anarchy is as well.

Obama is not a perfect president, please show me one who has, but he's been a steady leader for 3 and a half years and hasn't completely gone insane. Lucky for us the cool demeanor in his business means we're finally being treated to more active market activity in all levels of society as of late 2011.

In our own backyard, President Obama is the only voice we have to represent the opinions of thousands of Alaskans opposed to unnecessary land exploitation activities. Every official in every party in the state and even Democratic Senator wunderkind Begich are stuck in the rut of the "Drill Baby Drill" mentality that Alaska seems to be unable to rehabilitate itself from since a modest success in the 80's. Alaska needs to be working with the resources it has, like manpower and education, and to practice more conservationist efforts.

There are plenty of jobs to be created if we shifted our incentives policies. Why not give incentives to groups trying to spread communications services? Statewide 4G coverage would be nice. Why no incentives to build better pedestrian environments in small towns that boost tourism and in-state tourism? Why no incentives to give communities and neighborhoods who think "Gee it would be nice if we had a _____" what they need to build a better community? Why no incentives to begin thermodynamic energy projects in Alaska's vast volcanic zones to reduce heating costs effectively without dealing with a volatile world market? The answers to these can be summed up with one word: monopoly. It seems like everything in Alaska is monopolized to some degree, and what's worse is that 99% of the time its just by circumstance. Alaska needs to make a goal to give people more options in every facet of their life to create competition, and competition creates jobs.

There is so much opportunity in the state and it's just depressing that Alaskans are pawns in the elaborate brainwashing scheme of "oil or death". The oil industry is just fine as it is and nobody advocates for its complete dismantling, but we can no longer be a one-hit-wonder state.

cormit 03/04/12 - 08:20 am
Give and take

In regards to cbeards post ...... Well said.

vita1945 03/05/12 - 12:37 pm
"Republican Ideas"

Regarding the "cbeard" post: I encourage everyone to read his post. After reading it you will understand what progressive thinking people think about you and half the population of the United States. Especially interesting is the comment regarding "Ideas". I wonder if he/she would like it if there were no room for his/her ideas? Our country was founded on an "idea". Thank God there was room for the ideas that this country was founded upon.

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