Friday, January 18, 2008

The Bacchus Caucus at Ceasars

Walk Us To The Caucus

If there is one thing the Nevada Democratic caucus has done it is to raise awareness about the political process on both sides of the aisle. Prior to this election the avreage culinary worker, I daresay, thought a caucus was some sort of food preparation. Even among those not of the culinary union ilk the very word caucus sounded odd. But thanks to the teachers union the term will forever be ingrained in our lexicon.

A bit of Democratic Nevada Caucus history: Last May it was determined that at-large caucuses would be held for those who worked on caucus day and be otherwise unable to caucus in their assigned locations - which are based on one's residence. It would be not unlike allowing 1950s auto workers in Detroit to caucus in auto plants or steel workers in Pittsburgh to caucus in steel mills. The largest group of unionized workers in Nevada is the Culinary Union. The plan was reviewed and approved in October and nine Strip area hotels were identified to make time and space available for culinary workers. So far so food.

Then a fly landed in the ointment. The culinary union decided to endorse Senator Obama. Shortly thereafter the Nevada state teacher's union, which leans toward Hillary, decided that at-large caucus sites on the Strip were inappropriate since other employee groups were not given the same option. The culinary union retorted that the vast majority of union workers who would be employed during the Saturday caucus were culinary workers employed on the Strip and therefore the at-large sites were justified. Others claimed the timing of the protest came only after culinary made their endorsement. The teachers union filed a lawsuit to block the at-large sites. A federal judge denied the suit. Score: Waiters 1, Teachers 0.

But the teachers union and other Clinton supporters might get the last laugh as they prepare for a Sunday chant of, "No more caucus, no more cooks, no more culinary sassy looks." Pollsters have projected that despite the Culinary Union endorsement Senator Clinton is projected to carry 41% of the Nevada Democratic voters to Senator Obama's 32%. And we all know how accurate the pollsters can be.

As for John Edwards, who continues to Show in the presidential horse races, it will be interesting to see who he will support once he wakes up and smells the Starbucks, and realizes that his biggest bargaining ship will come in the form of his endorsement.

A little blogging music Maestro, let's hear the Minutemen do, "This Ain't No Picnic."

Dr. Forgot

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