Where do I get info on running for precinct? Following are good links to start finding information on running for precinct in your area.
When you find the information you are looking for, please upload documents, make topics, etc. in your state and county groups, so others can utilize these procedures and run.
We are also looking for State and County Coordinators, so please check out our Our Leadership page for details.
Here is an example from a previous letter and question on this subject:
How/where would I get information on running for precinct captain in my local area? I’m in Chester County PA. – Todd
While rules vary from state to state, this answer to Todd’s question is a good guide to get started.
First, Call your local Board of Elections and tell them you want to run for Precinct in (your party) — at the next primary or caucus where precinct executives are elected in your state. )State law governs which parties have qualified to be recognized that year, and it is often only the Democratic and Republican parties, as the rules have been made very difficult for state parties in most states. In any case, the Democratic and Republican parties control all 50 states and all 3141 counties, so we recommend that everyone pick either the Democratic or Republican party with regard to running for precinct.)
Give the person at the Board of Elections your address — and ask them what precinct you live in. They will tell you. You can also find this out for yourself by getting the “Precinct Finder” for your county. This is a book that lists all streets AND what precinct each is in. Some streets are in one precinct for a certain range of addresses and another precinct for another range of addresses (i.e., Harrison Avenue addresses 2000 to 4012 are in Precinct A; Harrison Avenue addresses 4013 to 5180 are in Precinct B, and so on).
Then — ask the Board of Elections what are the requirements in your state to run for precinct executive (or captain, or committeeman). They will tell you. (If you get the run around in any way, call your Secretary of State, and ask them how to find the state laws that govern the precinct elections and the parties who have qualified to be recognized by your state in that period.) Such questions are matter of state law in most, if not all, states. Again — you can double check the rules regarding running from precinct executive by calling the Secretary of State’s office if you wish, or by looking it up yourself in the state law (called the Ohio Revised Code in the state of Ohio, for instance).
I believe in Pennsylvania you need 10 signatures from voters in YOUR PRECINCT registered in the SAME PARTY as you are in. So if you are running in the Republican Party you need the valid signatures of ten registered Republicans. (In Ohio, we need 5 valid signatures from registered voters in our own party, or of those who are registered as independent. In Ohio, for instance, you declare your party by what party ballot you choose in the even year primaries. So if you chose a Democratic ballot when you voted in the spring primary in 2008 — then you are classified as a registered democrat until 2010, and so on.)
Also, you can get a map for your precinct, or a walking list for your precinct, or both.
Your precinct has boundaries as surely and as precisely as your state and your country. Your precinct is usually 10 or 15 streets around your house. The map is usually an aerial view of your precinct. For EXACTLY where your precinct ends on each street – you need the walking list which will tell you the address at which your precinct ends on each street.
The walking list tells you who are the registered voters in your precinct, whether they are registered as Republicans, Democrats, or independents (or registered in another party if there are other parties qualified in your state, such as the Libertarian Party, Green Party, or Constitution Party, for instance) and what address each voter lives at.
By using the walking list for your precinct, you can be sure you are getting valid signatures for your petition to run for precinct. Then you hand in your petition to the Board of Elections when you are finished collected the required number of signatures.
VERY IMPORTANT: YOU MUST CHECK WITH YOUR COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS TO SEE ON WHAT DATE YOU CAN PICK UP YOUR PETITIONS TO RUN FOR PRECINCT, by what date you must turn your petition back into the Board of Elections, — and on what date the primary election (or caucus) takes place in your county and state. (For instance, if in Ohio the Primary is on May 5th, the time to pick up your precinct petition may begin 90 days earlier around February 25th, and the time to turn it in may be 30 days before the primary around April 5th. These are just made up dates — so be sure to check the exact dates in your county and state.)
When your petition is certified by the board of Elections as having the required number of valid signatures – then your name will be on the ballot IN YOUR PRECINCT ONLY for your party for the next primary held in your state.
For instance, in Pennsylvania you will probably have another primary around the spring of 2010 – but check this out to be sure when it is.
If you are UNOPPOSED for Precinct Captain in your precinct for your party, — then if you vote for yourself, you win. If others have collected the required number of signatures to run for precinct executive in your precinct in your party, then they will also be on the ballot running against you.
When there is more than one candidate – the candidate who gets the most votes at the primary wins, and earns the right to go to the COUNTY party organizational meeting a month or so later (at the local VFW Hall, convention center, or wherever it is held) – and vote on WHO is the Party Chairman and Party Executive Committee for your party in your local county for the next 2 years. THIS is the most important power of the elected Precinct Captain. If the precinct captains elected a good party chairman for your local party – then that Party Chairman and his team will ENDORSE good candidates to go to Congress, who will in turn undo the damage that has been done over the last few decades, and put this country on the right track again.
By the way, I’m told that in Kentucky, for instance, they do not have a primary – but a caucus to elect Precinct Executives. On the appointed night – everyone interested in a given precinct goes to an appointed address for their party (i.e., Democratic Party), which may be at a home, school, or Recreation Center, etc., — Then, by a show of hands, or by paper ballot, everyone present from that precinct elects someone to be the Precinct Captain for that precinct for the next two years.
Do not be discouraged if someone in an official capacity gives you the “run around.” Local Party leaders have been known to do this, because in many counties they do NOT want thousands of normal citizens to wake up to how they can make their influence felt in the precinct system.
Everyone into the Battle!
Rise like Lions after slumber
In unvanquishable number –
Shake your chains to earth like dew
Which in sleep had fallen on you –
Ye are many – they are few
– from a poem written by Percy Bysshe Shelley in 1819
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