The Washington Times - December 29, 2011, 09:52AM

On Tuesday January 3, Iowa Republicans will fill 1,774 precincts throughout the state that caucus night and choose which individual they want to support for the GOP presidential nomination. Iowa GOP spokeswoman Nicole Sizmore clarified a number of issues about the caucus voting on Wednesday night.

First, according to an Iowa GOP media advisory, Iowa Republicans can vote for anyone they want, even if the person is not officially running for president anymore, like Herman Cain, for example. 

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“Anybody could write down someone’s name. It could be Herman Cain. It could be Nicole Sizemore. It could be Chris Christie…anybody. So if we see that people are still voting for Herman Cain, that’s why we included it in the advisory,” said Ms. Sizemore.

This also means Iowa caucus voters could vote for fictional characters if they choose to. Sizemore noted, “The night of the caucus, what we’ll be reporting is that group of those candidates and the ‘no preference’ and ‘other’ categories, but 14 days later those actual ones that people did (vote for) like Donald Duck or Mickey Mouse, you will be able to see that in our certified results, because it will be a break down of every single person that was voted for at a precinct.”

In order to register the night of caucus voters will need a valid iowa driver’s license. If a voter does not have a Iowa driver’s license, other acceptable forms of ID to register to vote on the night of the caucus are: Iowa non-driver identification card, Out-of-state drivers license or non-driver identification card, US passport, US military ID, ID card issued by an employer, Student ID issued by an iowa high school or college .

One does not need to present an ID if he or she is already registered because a pre-printed list of all registered voters in the individual precincts will be provided to the precinct to check those registered individuals on caucus night. 

Sizemore stressed that vote counting will not happen in an undisclosed location as previously reported saying:

“What’s going to happen is that the precinct leader and representatives from campaigns will be counting the votes at the precinct site, so the only location that has been moved is where Iowa GOP officials are working from,” she said.

“Once these votes are counted at the precinct site, these will be reported to the Iowa GOP officials, where also campaign representatives are more than welcome to come and observe that as well to make sure that there is consistency in our reporting system, which is electronic. So its really just for transparency and consistency purposes and due to the threats we’ve had we’re just making sure that it all remains safe guarded.”

below is a quick rundown from the Iowa GOP detailing how the process will work:    

  • All caucus participants arrive at their precincts where they will sign in at the door upon arrival.  Caucuses will begin at 7:00PM CT. 

    • The caucus meetings begin with the pledge of allegiance.  A caucus chair and secretary will be elected by the body to run the meeting and take notes. 

    • After the chair and secretary are elected, candidate representatives from each campaign are given time to speak on behalf of their candidate. 
    • Once the speakers have finished, sheets of paper are be passed out to every registered Iowa Republican from the precinct. Voters then write down their candidate preference. 
    • All votes are then collected.   
    • Every vote is counted.  The caucus chair and secretary will count the votes in front of the caucus and a representative from each campaign is allowed to observe the counting of the votes. The results are recorded on an official form provided by the Republican Party of Iowa and are announced to the caucus. 
    • A caucus reporter is chosen to report the results to the Republican Party of Iowa, accompanied by campaign representatives to verify the results reported to Iowa GOP officials. 
    • RPI officials do not count results; they aggregate them from around the state and report them to the media.  To ensure consistency in reporting, campaign representatives have the opportunity to be present with RPI officials as votes are reported to the public. 
    • We will be reporting the votes for Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Buddy Roemer, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, “No Preference,” and “Other.”
    • “No Preference” votes include those who vote “present,” “no preference, “uncommitted,” or “none of the above.”  
    • Within fourteen days of the caucus, certified results will be released for a complete breakdown of all caucus votes that were cast by precinct. 
    • After the Presidential preference poll is completed the caucus will elect precinct committee representatives; delegates, alternates, and junior delegates to the county convention; and discuss and submit platform resolutions for consideration at the county convention.