Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Washington Republican Caucus Update

With 93.3% of precincts reporting:
Huckabee 23.8 %
McCain 25.4 %
Paul 20.7 %
Romney 16.7 %
Other 1.0 %
Uncommitted 12.3 %
McCain's lead of 1.6% just looks too close to call still.

The Seattle Times is reporting that the resumption of the count was brought on by pressure from the Huckabee campaign.

I still believe that the McCain lead will hold, as the state party is privy to more data (remaining precincts and county trends) than has been publicly released. But in retrospect, in a race this tight, it was a mistake to call the winner without releasing some of that supporting data. Unfortunate (because of the 2004 gubernatorial fiasco) , but not a big deal. We didn't select national delegates yesterday, just delegates to the county conventions (who theoretically could change their minds.) The national convention delegates won't be elected until the state convention May 31. Based on yesterday's result, McCain and Huckabee will have around 4 or 5 each, with Paul and Romney also getting a few.

If most Washington Republicans don't understand our complicated, lengthy, multi-step delegate selection process, people from around the county certainly don't. Misunderstandings by passionate political activists plus the first presidential primary for WSRP chairman Luke Esser and his staff equaled a not quite ready for prime time performance. But hopefully this incident will motivate the Huckabee base in Washington to come out and vote in the February 19 primary by showing Mike can win here.

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