Thursday, June 30, 2016

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Vote for Kimmi Lewis

(Because of our limited resources, our only endorsement is in this one primary contest. We suggest all candidates be put on record with the simple question from you via Twitter, Facebook, or email, "Do you support our Colorado Caucus?")

April 8 rancher Kimmi Lewis was nominated from the floor of the Colorado House District 64 Republican Nominating Assembly, which also nominated Tim Dore for what would be his 3rd term.

A surprise nomination like this often happens when an elected representative looses contact with those who have put them in office.

Lewis got more votes that Dore, which usually is not the case for a challenger, and if you Google Kimmi Lewis you can see she is getting overwhelming support from her local community.

It is very likely Tim Dore is running a stealth campaign with telephone calls and direct mail to supporters. Being the incumbent it is very likely he will be reelected WITHOUT YOUR HELP.

Dore was a Democrat until deciding to serve District 64, which is heavily Republican and Dore realized it is very unlikely a Democrat could win.

So fresh from this shock at his Republican assembly, Dore was the "Republican" sponsor of legislation that would have killed our Colorado Caucus, which kills this kind of challenge.

If you are a registered Republican who live in the district, vote! You can also vote if you change
your registration from Unaffiliated to Republican.

Vote for Kimmi Lewis as the Republican candidate in the primary election for Colorado House District 64. You have until the polls close on Tuesday to get to a polling location and to cast your ballot if you live in her district. https://www.facebook.com/voteforkimmi/photos

UNAFFILIATED VOTERS CAN STILL CHANGE TO REPUBLICAN OR DEMOCRAT, see:


Please vote! And please share this information with your GOP and Unaffiliated friends, 
suggest they do the same. WITH YOUR HELP we can stop Tim Dore's attack on our
Colorado Caucus! Only some 20% of registered voters have cast their ballots. 

John Wren is the registered agent for Save the Caucus, a Colorado political committee. 1881 Buchtel Blvd. #501, 
Denver, CO 80210 (303)861-1447  www.COCaucus.org  


Why save the Colorado Caucus?

Don't let them shut you up!  Support candidates who support our 
Colorado Caucus-- where the voice of the common person makes a real difference.

The room is buzzing with conversation. Neighbors who may only have shared brief greetings in the past are now discussing pressing public policy issues and presidential candidates who will shape the nation for decades. 
Neighbors connect with each other at levels of nuance and depth that is nonexistent for passive subjects watching the nonstop chatter of today’s news media. They discover common ground that is translated into political action by their representatives at the local, state and federal levels.
This is the wonderful Colorado Caucus..  This is the grassroots of our representative democracy at its very best. In some 6,000 gatherings across Colorado citizens interact in an iron-sharpening-iron forums that challenge, enlighten, clarify. 
This is usually the Colorado Caucus, the wonderful grassroots system that has served us well since 1912 until recently. It was almost killed with a misguided experiment with a Presidential Primary for three election cycles, the test ended in 2004. It was never fully restored to health, and it has been under attack by powerful forces ever since 1912.

These forces are united by a single idea: to dupe Colorado citizens into reverting back to the pre-reform days, with party bosses having almost no oversight from rank-and-file party members.

If the Empire, in StarWars terms, fools enough people, our wonderful Coloradan grassroots will once again be replaced with the astroturf of a Presidential Primary. This is not a new fight.
Save The Caucus, a Colorado political committee, was first formed to do precisely that, to save the Colorado Caucus, which would have been killed by Amendment 29 in 2002. Despite being outspent 1400 to 1, Amendment 29 was defeated 60% to 40%.

The committee was formed by John Wren, Phil Perington, Frank & Sylvia Sullivan, Sharron and Ben Klein, , JoAnne & Dan Gray, Ruth Prendergast, Bill Armstrong and many others to fight Amendment 29, which would have killed what was left of the Colorado Caucus that had almost died trying to co-exist with expensive Presidential Primaries that were tried in 1992, 1996 and 2000. We fully re-adopted the caucus system in 2004.
Wren recently reactivated Save the Caucus with the Colorado Secretary of State and listed himself as registered agent. “Our intention was to be ready if a ballot initiative arose that would have the same impact as Amendment 29 in 2002, and that has now happened, and we could be taken back 100 years to the corruption that existed then that finally stopped with the progressive reforms adopted by states across the country," said Wren.

Why is the Colorado Caucus worth saving? Here's what CU political scientists very familiar and experienced in it's operations before our experiment with the Presidential Primary has said:
“…(The Colorado Caucus— the unique Colorado system adopted in 1912) permits citizens to run for office even though they may not be the ‘pets’ of the party organization, and at the same time it discourages persons without any real stature and public standing from becoming candidates,” wrote Curtis Martin and Wallace Stealey of the University of Colorado, Boulder, in 1967.
Caucuses are held every other year in 3,000 neighborhoods across Colorado, often in public spaces such as schools, and also in homes that are handicapped accessible. This is the start of a process that ends up with delegates going to the Democratic and Republican national conventions, where they will vote for a nominee for each party to represent the voters in the general election. 
At each neighborhood caucus, members of one of the major political parties vote for delegates to their county assembly. At the caucus and assembly citizens have the chance to persuade their neighbors about why their preferred candidate should be elected. A candidate must garner a minimum number of votes to be presented at the next level. At the county assemblies, some of those delegates will be chosen to go to the seven congressional district assemblies and others to represent the candidate at the state assembly. From there, delegates are chosen for the national convention, where they will have a chance to choose their political party’s nominee for President of the United States of America.
Some say our Colorado Caucus is too complicated. It is true that to be a self-governing citizen takes time. The obsession our culture has with instant gratification is not healthy for our society when it comes to important matters such as who represents us politically. 
"I love the caucus process," Chuck Broerman, El Paso County clerk and recorder, told the Colorado Springs Gazette in February. "I really enjoy the fact that grass-roots people can get in and participate in the process and make a decision about who the candidates are going to be."
If there are bad leaders in the party or among elected representatives, the Precinct Caucus enables concerned citizens to begin a powerful process to set a new direction.  A Presidential Primary only allows the quick pull of a lever or check of a box, the opportunity to easily correct problems is lost, which is exactly why dictatorial party leaders hate our wonderful Colorado Caucus. 
People complain that our nation’s elections are dominated by monied interests. Our 6,000 Colorado Precinct Caucus gatherings are a powerful corrective to this domination. The Colorado Caucus enables those who feel powerless to have a voice and enter the political process. Apathy about governance disappears when the politically-poor find their voice and connect with neighbors. Many, many of these formerly silent citizens over the past 100 years have subsequently been elected to public office. 
“We're systematically replacing ‘social capital’ with plain old monetary capital (with primaries),” wrote Sue O'Brien in 2002. “Colorado's traditional caucus-convention system, in contrast, rewards the shoe-leather and diligence. It provides a low-cost way for aspirants to work the neighborhoods, investing energy instead of dollars.”
Those screaming “Kill the Caucus” say the 6,000 neighborhood gatherings for a couple of hours every two years creates radicalization, but the opposite is true. When they are well led, which they were not this year, face to face discussion helps citizens realize the people they share their votes with are real human beings with similar life struggles, experiences and desires. 
Washington State has estimated changing from a Presidential Primary to a caucus-assembly system like the Colorado Caucus would save $11 million. Political parties pay for the caucus.
Cost of Presidential Primary— $Millions. The experience of shared humanity lost— Priceless. That is why it is so important that we once again Save the Caucus. Support candidates who support the Colorado Caucus. 
For more see Colorado Caucus News (click here) or call John Wren at (303)861-1447

John Wren is registered agent for Save the Caucus, a Colorado political committee. 1881 Buchtel Blvd #501, Denver, CO 80210

Endorsements at 3 p.m.

Endorsements for Colorado primary will be announced here at 3 p.m.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Powerful forces attack Colorado Caucus again.

"John S. Wren of the group Save the Caucus said party leaders don’t like the caucus because it puts rank-and-file members more in charge than the leadership. He gave a brief history of Colorado caucus.

“It’s consistently been under attack by powerful forces almost since its inception,” he said.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Denver Post Corrects Print Edition Story.

From now until the elections Save the Caucus will make a media release each Sunday afternoon at 3 p.m. and post it here on www.COCaucus.org. PLEASE FORWARD. THANKS!

Here is the link to this week's release about the total makeover of a Denver Post article from print edition to online with no correction notice for readers :

https://www.icloud.com/pages/000_Bx5CXG1Sq-GqKGP6sz6CQ#Release_160612

If you can't open the release or if you want more information about it, please call John Wren, (303)861-1447. Thanks!

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Colorado Capitol Saturday (6/11), stop drive by voting!

 Don't let them AstroTurf our wonderful Colorado  grassroots with the drive by voting of an expensive, meaningless so-called Presidential Primary.

 Save the Caucus! Join us June 11, 1 pm at Colorado Capitol, check it out:  http://www.coloradosenaterepublicans.com/elections_study_group_hosts_first_meeting_saturday 

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

New idea: Donut Clubs

We are trying something this morning at 10 a.m., RTD University Station here in Denver. Weekly Donut Club meeting. Social event. Join us if you can! We'll let you know how it goes.

For more see Link I Tweeted: @John.S.Wren or @ReTweetBuildingBetterColorado

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Caucuses aren't for ciphers by Sue O'Brien


Monday, May 23, 2016

Are Unaffiliated voters transpoliticals? Are they are more objective? No!

We can register as a Republican or as a Democrat  if we want to make a real difference. (May be more major parties in the future, not the real issue right now.)

What does it really mean when someone says they are unaffiliated or a political independent?

 Excellent talk by THE expert on this question, head of Government department at Harvard. Very much worth watching and sharing with others online:


Saturday, May 21, 2016

Caucuses aren't for ciphers by Sue O'Brien

My friend Sue O'Brien wrote this when our wonderful Colorado Caucus, our neighborhood system for nominating candidates to the primary ballot, was in danger of being killed by Amendment 29. Partly because of Sue's and The Denver Post's strong support of the Colorado Caucus, the misguided Amendment 29 was defeated.

Sue's wonderful column is still very much worth reading as a reminder of why the caucus-assembly system is worth preserving, warts and all. Please share it with your friends. Here's what Sue wrote in the Denver Post:

Caucuses aren't for ciphers
Denver Post Editorial Page, October 6, 2002
by Sue O'Brien

cipher - a person or thing of no importance or value; nonentity

- New World College Dictionary

So, what will we choose to be: ciphers or individuals?

Ciphers are faceless. They have value only as something to count - a signature on a petition or a vote to tally by machine. It's easy for ciphers to hide out. Hey, they're just part of the mob.

Individuals, by contrast, stand out. They take responsibility. And they rarely hide.

We have a sovereign opportunity to become ciphers this November. One of the few mechanisms left in modern politics that rewards individual initiative - the precinct caucus - is on the brink of being eliminated in favor of a political nominating system that would let wannabe candidates get on the ballot only by collecting - and counting - petition signatures.

It's a lousy proposal put forth by an otherwise admirable organization: the Bighorn Center for Public Policy.

Now, I have nothing against getting on the ballot by petition. But why eliminate the choice - caucus or petition - that our present system provides?

It's not as though there's something inherently wrong with the caucus. And, even though these grassroots conclaves have seen declining attendance in recent years, there's a lot inherently good about them.

Look around modern society. We have a woeful lack of what Harvard scholar Robert Putnam calls "social capital" - the dynamism that comes from doing things together and making community decisions together. Yet the spate of election "reforms" we're seeing these days almost seems designed to stomp out the last vestiges of community collaboration.

"Voting and following politics are relatively undemanding forms of participation," writes Putnam in his influential "Bowling Alone." "In fact, they are not, strictly speaking, forms of social capital at all, because they can be done utterly alone."

We can be utterly alone, too, when we perform the two other actions modern politics seems to want to limit us to: writing checks and watching attack ads on TV. We're systematically replacing "social capital" with plain old monetary capital.

Colorado's traditional caucus-convention system, in contrast, rewards the shoe-leather and diligence. It provides a low-cost way for aspirants to work the neighborhoods, investing energy instead of dollars. Recent proof of this pudding came in the race for the GOP nomination in the 7th Congressional District, where Rick O'Donnell captured first line on the primary ballot with a low-budget campaign that focused on traditional caucus and door-to-door campaigning. O'Donnell eventually lost the primary to the better-funded Bob Beauprez, but his achievement in getting on the ballot was impressive.

But even more important than the caucus' benefits for candidates is its benefit for ordinary citizens. It's a vibrant neighborhood forum for hashing out ideas - the last remaining arena in which you can get on the first rung of the ladder toward political effectiveness by just showing up.

I've covered precinct or town caucuses in Iowa, Maine, Minnesota and Mississippi as well as Colorado. My favorite memory is of escorting a big-deal network analyst to his very first caucus in an American Legion hall in Iowa. This was a political expert well into his 50s, yet he'd never seen a caucus; primaries had always been his beat. He was blown away. For the first time in years of covering politics, he told me, he'd seen the true face of America.

He was right. Caucuses offer a peculiarly intimate view of a community and its people. They'll amaze you with the quality of caring and thought participants bring to the discussion. And sometimes, if you're very lucky, you'll see new, young leaders find their first toehold in the process.

Why is the Colorado caucus withering? First, because the legislature, in an ineffectual grab for national headlines, created a meaningless presidential primary that eliminated the headline race that once inspired much caucus activism.

Second, because we're all getting good at sitting on the sidelines. The Kettering Foundation's David Mathews once reminded readers that the word idiot comes from the Greeks. Privacy, they thought, was akin to stupidity. "Idiots" were incapable of finding their place in the social order.

Why bow to the trend of letting the next guy do it? Why sell out to letting money replace shoe-leather at every level of American politics?

Why not keep the caucus as an open door to involvement, while continuing to provide the petition alternative? Bighorn's goal may be to increase the number of people peripherally involved in the process - but the initiative will never replace the quality of participation the caucus can provide.

Good political talk … is where we recognize the connectedness of things - and our own connectedness. … Good political talk is also where we discover what is common amidst our differences. -David Mathews, "Civic Intelligence"


Sue O'Brien was editor of the Denver Post editorial page.

Study Group Saturday.

Colorado Elections Study Group starts this Saturday, Colorado Capitol, 1 to 3 p.m. For more informations see: http://www.coloradoindependent.com/159412/group-explores-shifting-colorado-to-a-presidential-primary

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Join us, Save the Caucus!

Join us, get an invitation/agenda for 2nd Colorado Caucus Day at the Capitol. How do you join? Just "Like" and "Share" our Facebook Page, http://Facebook.com/Colorado.Caucus.News 


Friday, June 3, 2016

Caucus Corp on the Startup Show

Startup Show, noon MDT or by recording here sponsored by Small Business Chamber of Commerce, Inc. Each Friday we talk about startup. Today the start of "Caucus Corp."

To be on the show next week call John Wren on Monday or Tuesday at (303)861-1447 or RSVP for next week's show on http://www.Meetup.com/Small-Biz-Chamber where you'll also find information about the IDEA Cafe Startup Workshop and joining a peer advisory group. PLEASE CARE ENOUGH TO SHARE THIS WITH A FRIEND. THANKS!

TODAY:
THANKS Villager Newspaper.
Recovering the American Dream.
Denver Speakers Corner
IDEA Cafe Startup Workshop
New wife?

Today at Noon on the Startup Show : Thanks Villager Newspaper!

Topic of Startup Show today (Fri, 6/3) at Noon, link will be posted here.

For now, read all about it on this link, why a network of hyper-local political educators and mentors is in the works to save our wonderful Colorado Caucus. Check it out now, then come back at noon today or any time over the weekend. Here's the article:  GrassrootsRules.us : Thanks Villager Newspaper!: "Thanks to Bob and Gerri Sweeney and everyone at the Villager Newspaper for this article this week that is a direct communication to the most..." click above to read it all.

I can't do this alone. We need all kinds of help. Call me if you'd like to be part of what we are doing to Save the Caucus. Thanks!

John Wren

(303)861-1447

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