The first-ever Kentucky Republican Presidential Caucus will be held next weekend on Saturday, March 5.
The Republican Caucus, unlike previous primaries, will be held in March instead of May and will be handled completely by the local Republican party. The county clerk’s office is in charge of the May primary.
“We are not involved with the caucus at all,” said Logan County Clerk Scottie Harper. “We will help them if they ask for it, but we don’t put that on at all. The guidelines and everything come from the state Republican party.”
There will still be a May primary for every other office scheduled to be on the ballot this year, except for the Republican presidential nomination.
“Our role is to do the May primary,” Harper said. “We’ll have every item on there, except for that.”
In the Republican Caucus, only registered Republicans are eligible to vote on March 5.
Every county Republican Party has the option to hold a caucus or conduct a regional caucus with neighboring counties. A typical county party will hold its own caucus in one location. The most populous counties will have multiple caucus locations.
The voting process will be similar to a typical Kentucky election. Voters will show identification, sign in, and vote by secret ballot. However, the voting locations are different.
In Logan County, the caucus will be held at the GOP Headquarters on the Russellville square. Voting hours will be 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“It will be a very simple process to vote in the caucus,” said Larry Noe, the executive director of the Logan County Republican party. “You will just have to sign in and mark who you want to vote for on the ballot.”
Presidential candidates had to their declaration of candidacy with the Republican Party of Kentucky by January 7, 2016. The following candidates have filed for the March 5, 2016 Caucus: Jeb Bush, Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Ben Carson, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, John Kasich, Chris Christie, Carly Fiorina, Rick Santorum and Mike Huckabee.
Noe said that even those candidates who have suspended their campaigns, such as Kentucky’s Rand Paul, will still be on the caucus ballot.
A list of other caucus locations can be found on the Kentucky Republicans website, rpk.org.
Harper also would like to remind citizens that his office is always in need of poll workers and anyone who wishes to be a poll worker for the May primary would be welcome.
“We’re always looking for poll workers, but if you change your party, you can’t be a poll worker for a year,” Harper said. “You have to be in that party for one year to be a poll worker.”
To sign up to be a poll worker, you must contact the Republican or Democratic chairman.
“They have to sign their forms with their party before March 15 in order to be a poll worker,” Harper said. “My office will be happy to help anyone in that process of becoming a poll worker.”
To contact OJ Stapleton, email [email protected] or call 270-726-8394.