National Affairs: Big Night in Seattle

In the state of Washington the political grass roots are precinct caucuses open to any voter registered as a party adherent. The caucus elects delegates to district and county conventions, which elect delegates to the state convention, which elects delegates to the national convention. Normally, the crowd at a precinct caucus wouldn't fill a table for canasta. But last week, some 18,000 voters crowded into King (Seattle) County's Republican caucuses. Said one astonished precinct committeeman, as 59 registered voters jammed his meeting: "Two years ago my wife and I had to go out and get two neighbors . . ."

Chief reason...

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