For many people, the weekend offers a reprieve from the routine rigors of the week. Saturday is a day for people to get out and enjoy recreational activities, see their kids play sports, head to a piano or dance recital, or just sleep in. On March 19, 2016, waking up at 6:00am to snow flurries and temperatures in the 20’s was a big invitation to stay under the covers and go back to sleep. Instead of staying warm in bed however, I got up and left my house at 6:30am to head to a high school auditorium about 30 minutes away. This wasn’t for an early morning school activity. Rather, when I attended my precinct caucus 2 1/2 weeks prior, I was honored to be voted in as a delegate to attend our County Assembly.
I arrived to the school and was greeted with lines out of the door as people stood in the cold waiting to check in. After receiving my delegate badge and voting paperwork, I found my way to the seating for my district. In the 2 1/2 weeks between the precinct caucus and this county assembly, I received stacks of political mailers encouraging me to get to know the various candidates. Some mailers were colorful and glossy. Others were plain with just words letting me as a delegate know about the candidate. I arrived at my seat which held even more flyers and signage. Hundreds of delegates and alternates were in the auditorium. The delegates were seated in the lower level seating and alternates were in the balcony. Each district was allotted a certain amount of delegates. Some delegates did not show up that day so the district captain would “promote” an alternate to a delegate for their designated district. The stage was set for my day at the County Assembly.
During the County Assembly, the meat of the day included candidate speeches for various local offices and submitting different votes. Two seats for County Commissioner are up for election this year in addition to a State Senate seat and different State House seats for three different districts. Having been elected as a delegate at my precinct meeting, I felt a responsibility to learn as much as I could about the different candidates running for the different offices. This was a tough task in the somewhat limited time between the caucuses and this assembly. Hearing from the candidates was a great opportunity to learn more and see the preparations made by each campaign.
As I poured through the different mailers I had received leading up to the assembly, I looked at the candidates running for the office of State Senator in my area as my currently elected leader is term limited. Many of the flyers and mailers spoke to positions I agreed with… protection of the unborn, smaller government and our 2nd amendment rights. The candidates positions appealed to me and I thought could possibly make good representative leaders in our State Senate. Seeing and hearing from these candidates however is what ultimately firmed up my decision on who to vote for. Any candidate that received at least 30% of the day’s vote would appear on the primary ballot. For this State Senate office, the speech given by Jess Loban was passionate. The remarks did not seem canned but rather they seemed more heartfelt. With a sometimes cracking voice, his stance on different positions as well as his past history of testifying at the State Capitol, the vote that I took very seriously went to Mr. Loban.
The day also included a breakout meeting where we met with the other delegates and alternates just within our district. In this meeting, discussion about the upcoming Congressional District, State and Judicial District Assemblies were discussed. The delegates and alternates that were present were able to nominate themselves to be considered as a delegate for the upcoming assemblies. In our meeting, we had a brief & informal discussion about who each of us would like to see as the Republican Presidential nominee. With this meeting being held on March 19, 2016, there were three candidates remaining in the race. The strong majority of our district delegates and alternates supported Ted Cruz with a small handful wanting to see John Kasich receive the nomination. Donald Trump did not garner any support within our district. (It should be noted that I did see some minimal support for Trump in neighboring districts.)
After discussion, delegates (not alternates) were able to vote on who they wanted to have represent them from our district at the upcoming State Assembly, Congressional District Assembly and Judicial District Assembly. Delegates were able to vote as they were previously elected at their precinct caucuses. Alternates were not able to vote unless they had already been promoted to delegate status due to an absent delegate. This process again reflects the representative republic which we are blessed to live in… eligible voting citizens exercising their right to vote for who they would like to have represent them.
At this county assembly, I saw people that had passion for the process we were going through. I saw many delegates in the same position as me in being a first time delegate to the county assembly. I’m a simple guy. I’m an average person but trying to stay involved. I repeated at our district breakout meeting what I said at my precinct caucus, “I want to have a voice.” Being involved has helped in having my voice heard.
I am definitely not part of the establishment. I’m an average guy that works to try and provide a decent life for his family. At the County Assembly, I was honored to be elected as a delegate to the State Assembly as well as the Judicial District Assembly. I left the school that day about 9 hours after I arrived there. This was a time away from family but yet it was FOR family. I’m doing what I can to try and make sure my children have it better than I did. It is a small part, but if people come together and get involved… a difference WILL be made.
I will be sharing my experience at the much publicized Colorado State Assembly soon. So much misinformation has been put out in the media. I look forward to sharing my experiences there. Thanks for reading.