Denver Caucuses Result in Delegate Errors

February 2008
Whoops. 172 of Denver's caucus delegates appear to have been improperly selected, according to the Democratic party.
Some showed up at the wrong precinct. Most of them weren't even registered Democrats. "A couple people were Republicans. A couple people were Green Party," said Jennifer Coken, who chairs the Democratic Party of Denver. "It's been kind of nerve-racking for us."
They still don't know the final number of eligible voters who turned out to caucus.
In Denver, the number of voters who showed up at Democratic caucuses jumped from 2,628 in 2004 to 26,096 on Super Tuesday. They chose 3,032 delegates and 3,032 alternates to attend their county convention on March. 8, Jacobson said. But according to Denver Election Commission records, 119 of the delegates and alternates are not registered Democrats, she said, and 53 "caucused in a location other than their precinct." All 172 will be challenged, but they get an opportunity to prove the city records wrong at a Monday night meeting at Denver party headquarters. To qualify, "they have to bring in a certified copy of their voter registration," Jacobson said.
The problem extends, to a lesser degree, in other areas. Take Colorado Springs, for example:
El Paso County party chairman John Morris said the party had to toss about 25 delegates and alternates who were in the wrong precinct, registered as unaffiliated voters or not registered at all. In most cases, "people were excited and wanted to get involved and just showed up," he said.
Boulder thinks they will only have to toss 20 delegates. The errors won't change the ultimate result, since Barack Obama won huge in the state -- the final tally was Obama 66% to Hillary 32%. The good news is the turnout -- 120,000 participated in the Democratic caucuses. The bad news may be for those who intentionally misrepresented their party affiliation to vote: It's a misdemeanor.
Waak said she believes that law requires her to turn over the names of ineligible caucus voters to district attorney's offices for possible prosecution.