This year, the Democratic party in Washington is opting for a caucus rather than a primary. Caucuses require, in my opinion, much more commitment than voting. You show up, talk, listen to other people talk, move around into groups (hopefully of 15% or more), and vote. The caucus process here in Washington is fairly drawn out. The county caucuses are in April/Mail, the legislative district caucus is in May, the state convention is in June (complete calendar below). If you care about who Washington State elects and you're a Democrat, you have to show up at your caucus location on February 7 at 10am to have a say. Republicans, you'll just have to wait till November to let you feelings be known.
February 7, 2004
Here's the complete calendar:
1/02/04 Last day to file signatures for Initiatives to the Legislature
1/04/04 Delegate and alternate candidates may obtain statement of candidacy from State Party
1/07/04 Presidential Candidate's deadline for certifying names of their authorized reps. to State Party
1/12/04 Regular Legislative session begins
2/7/04 Precinct Caucuses
5/1/04 Legislative District Caucuses: Delegates to Congressional Caucuses elected
5/8/04 King County Convention: Platform and Resolutions
5/29/04 Congressional District Caucuses: Delegates elected to the National Convention
6/5/04 State Party Convention, Tacoma
11/02/04 General Election-Bush sent back to Crawford!
Yeah, yeah, yeah, it's off-topic. Consider it a public service announcement.