Someone posted a comment about how Obama voters should wait to vote until precinct day to participate in the caucus. I decided not to okay that post -I wasn't sure if the poster was just ignorant or deliberately trying to pass false information. So here are the Texas Democratic Party Rules for Precinct Conventions. Notice that you can EARLY vote OR vote on the day of the election. The point is that you need to make sure when you vote that you get authenticated that you voted so you can PROVE you voted on precinct convention night. But you dang well sure CAN early vote and we plan to do so tomorrow. One good reason is so that you can have it DONE and don't have something else accidentally come up on election day that keeps you from voting.
Here's the link to these rules and I suggest that everyone print these out and take them with you because IF the precinct chair doesn't show up, ANYONE can start the convention at 7:15. That is, anyone who can prove that he or she VOTED in the election, no matter whether early or THAT DAY.
B. Precinct Conventions
1. Time and Place. A Precinct Convention shall be held in each election precinct on the day of the Primary Election. No later than its statutory meeting in January, the County Executive Committee or, on its failure to act, the County Chair, shall set the time for convening Precinct Conventions at 7:15 p.m. At the same meeting, the County Executive Committee shall determine the place for the Precinct Convention to be the polling place for that precinct. If the polling place is not considered large enough for the expected number of participants, the County Executive Committee may select an alternate place which is located centrally and is easily accessible to the public. The time, date, place, and purpose of this statutory meeting of the County Executive Committee shall be publicized in advance. (Texas Election Code §174.022)
2. Posting Notice. At least 10 days before the Precinct Convention, the County Chair shall post the time, date, place, and purpose of the Precinct Conventions within the county on a bulletin board at the County Courthouse and shall file a copy in the County Clerk's office, where it shall be open to public inspection. (Texas Election Code §174.023)
3. Publicizing Meetings. Precinct Chairs shall be further responsible for publicizing the time, place, and purpose of their respective conventions, including posting the time, date, place, and purpose of the convention at the polling place on election day.
4. Eligibility to Participate. Any qualified Democratic voter 18 years of age or older who resides in the precinct where the convention will be held and who votes in the Democratic Primary, whether early or in person, shall be eligible to attend, to participate in, and to be a candidate for any Party Office or for any Delegate or Alternate position to be filled at that convention.
5. Duties of Convention Officers. The Permanent Chair shall preside over the convention immediately upon being elected and shall be responsible for appointing any convention Committees as the Chair deems necessary or as directed by the convention. The Chair also shall be responsible for ensuring that an accurate written record of convention proceedings is kept, including the list of persons present and a list of Delegates and Alternates elected to the County or Senatorial District Convention. The lists shall include residence addresses and cities or towns. (Texas Election Code §174.027)
6. Order of Business. The order of business at Precinct Conventions shall be as follows:
(a) Call to Order by the Precinct Chair or, in the Chair's absence, by any qualified participant.
(b) Preparation by the Precinct Chair of the Temporary Roll of the Convention. This shall be a list of qualified participants who are present, including their residence addresses with city or town. Persons arriving after the list of participants is completed and who are otherwise qualified to participate shall have their names entered on the list and may participate in proceedings subsequent to their arrival. Such persons, however, may not vote on matters previously voted upon or on which a vote has been called for by the Chair. Their political preference shall not cause a change in the proportional allocation of Delegates if the same has been announced at the time calling for the election of Delegates and Alternates in the Order of Business prescribed by the Rules.
(c) Election from among those present of a Permanent Convention Chair, a Secretary, and such other Officers necessary to conduct the business of the Convention.
(d) Election of Delegates and Alternates to the County or Senatorial District Conventions.
(e) Other Business: Committee reports, if any, resolutions, etc.
7. Submission of Records. The record and a copy shall be signed officially by the Permanent Convention Chair, sealed, and transmitted safely in person, no later than the third day after the convention, or by certified mail, return receipt requested, no later than the second day after the Convention, by the Permanent Chair to the County Chair or County Executive Committee Secretary, who shall send a copy of the delegate and alternate list to State Party headquarters. Copies shall be retained on file at both the county and state office until the end of the primary election year. (Texas Election Code §174.027)
8. Election of Delegates and Alternates.
(1) Each Precinct Convention shall elect one Delegate for each 25 votes, or major fraction thereof, cast in the precinct for the Democratic candidate for Governor in the last General Election, with each precinct entitled to at least one Delegate; provided however, that for the years 2008 and 2010, each Precinct Convention shall elect one Delegate for each 15 votes, or a major fraction thereof, cast in the precinct for the Democratic candidate for Governor in the last General Election, which each precinct entitled to at least one Delegate. (Temporary Rule Change)
(2) If boundaries of an election precinct within a county were changed after the last General Election, however, the County Executive Committee shall determine the allocation of Delegates to such precinct(s), using any fair and reasonable method.
(3) Each Precinct Convention shall elect one Alternate for each Delegate.
(b) Qualifications. The qualifications for Delegates and Alternates shall be the same as those required for participation in the convention, except that a person otherwise qualified need not be present at the convention to be elected a Delegate or Alternate.
9. Delegation Chair. The Precinct Convention either shall elect a Delegation Chair or shall assign this responsibility to the delegation, either by action or inaction.
10. Election Procedure in Presidential Years. In presidential years, as all qualified participants enter their names, residence addresses, and cities or towns upon the Temporary Roll of the Convention, they also shall indicate their presidential preference or uncommitted status. When it is time in the Order of Business to elect Delegates and Alternates to the County or Senatorial District Convention, the procedure shall be as follows:
(a) The Convention Chair shall announce the number of eligible voting members on the roll, the number of Delegates and Alternates the Convention is entitled to elect, and the number and percent of each presidential preference or uncommitted status reflected on the roll.
(b) On the basis of such determination, those preferring each presidential candidate and those who are uncommitted shall caucus separately to elect the same proportion of County or Senatorial District Convention Delegates and Alternates as their group represents at the Precinct Convention. Persons in a group comprising entitlement to less than one Delegate may proceed to the caucus of their second choice.
(c) The percentages then will be refigured, if necessary, and the new figures shall be used to allocate positions by preference.
(d) Within each Caucus, participants may nominate themselves or any other participant in that Caucus for the position of Delegate. Nominations shall be open from the floor of the Caucus until a motion is made, seconded, and passed by a two thirds vote to close nominations.
(e) Each participant may cast a number of votes equal to the number of Delegates allocated to such Caucus. Persons receiving the highest number of votes shall be the Delegates elected by the Caucus. The same number of nominees next highest in the voting shall be the Alternates.
(f) The election of the entire body of Delegates and Alternates chosen by the respective Caucuses in this manner then shall be ratified by majority vote of the Precinct Convention.