For those who may be confused by the sophisticated ritual to take place tomorrow night, explains the NY Times Caucus, “the process requires a commitment of several hours for a voter. And it encourages campaigns to have a level of organizational sophistication that often helps separate candidates who can go the distance from those who cannot...
“Once voters show up at their caucus location, it is not as simple as just making a quick decision. Representatives of each campaign are typically given the opportunity to make remarks in an attempt to sway some people at the last minute.
“The better-organized campaigns will have members of the community stand up for them at every caucus location. By contrast, the candidates with passionate, energized followings often receive more spontaneous expressions of support.
“It is a very different kind of democratic process than in primary states, where overt electioneering is kept at a distance from the actual voting. In Iowa, the campaigns are waged up close and personal, all the way until the end.”
Few people realize that the Iowa Caucuses are based on an ancient British tradition, which is perhaps best understood in the graphic illustration here.
Update: In a last-minute tweet, Rupert Murdoch calls Rick Santorum the “only candidate with genuine big vision” for the United States. Apparently, the Caucuses have their roots in the Australian culture as well.