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Minnesota party caucuses offer chance to participate

caucusBy the time the general election rolls around in November 2008, the candidates and platform for each party will be set in stone. The Minnesota party caucuses, the majority of which will be held on Feb. 5 (a.k.a., “Super Tuesday”), offer us a chance to determine who will be on that November ballot.

Each political party sets the date and time for its precinct caucuses. Minnesota’s Republican Party, Democratic-Farmer-Labor (DFL) Party, and Independence Party will hold their caucuses on Tuesday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. The Constitution Party of Minnesota will hold its caucus on Saturday, Feb. 2 at noon, while the Green Party will hold its caucus on March 4 at a time to be announced. The Libertarian Party of Minnesota is not holding precinct caucuses this year.

As for location, you must vote in the precinct where you reside. Students living on the Augsburg College Minneapolis campus vote in Ward 2, Precinct 7 (see information below). Those who live off campus should visit the Minnesota Secretary of State’s Caucus Finder to determine their party’s caucus location:

At your party’s caucus, you can cast your vote for who the party should nominate for President of the United States. Some parties are also selecting nominees for other elected positions. You can also elect local delegates to attend that party’s convention, and you can vote on resolutions that will shape that party’s political platform. For those with limited time to caucus, most of the parties allow you to cast your presidential ballot and not participate in the rest of the caucus events. Note that you must be eligible to vote in the November 2008 elections if you want to participate in your party’s caucus.

For more information about how to participate in Minnesota’s party caucuses, two information sessions will be presented by a volunteer with the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits in coordination with Augsburg’s Center for Service, Work, and Learning. The first session is Friday, Feb. 1 from noon – 1 p.m., and the other session is Monday, Feb. 4 from 7 – 8 p.m. Both sessions will be held in Room 103 of the Oren Gateway Center on the Minneapolis campus, and refreshments will be provided.

Party caucus locations for those WHO LIVE ON CAMPUS:

Feb. 2, noon

Minnesota Constitution Party

Eisenhower Community Center, 1001 Highway 7, Room 213B, Hopkins, MN

Feb. 5, 7 p.m.

Minnesota Republican Party

Luxton Recreation Center, 112 Williams Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor (DFL) Party

East Commons, Christensen Center (registration begins at 6:30 p.m.)

Minnesota Independence Party

University of Minnesota, Blegen Hall, Lower Level, 269 19th Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN, 55455

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