Long lines for ND caucuses, results expected Wednesday
Some voters say they waited in line for over two hours at the Democratic Caucus in Fargo
FARGO, N.D. — It’s not only too early to call the Democratic Presidential Caucus in North Dakota, we might not know results until Wednesday.
There was a huge turnout at the 14 polling sites across the state.
Alex Rohr, a spokesman for the North Dakota Democratic-NPL party, says every vote needs to be counted and it could take some time.
Some voters say they had to wait in line for two hours at the only polling site for Democrats in Fargo. Parking was also an issue at the Fargo-Moorhead Labor Temple.
With just three names left on the ballot, things are coming down to the wire in the election for the next Democratic presidential candidate.
The tight race drew many North Dakotans to the polls to have their voices heard in the state’s caucuses.
“There is always going to be more interest in an election when there’s some contest, when there is some competition,” Fargo Democratic Representative Karla Rose Hanson said.
That interest brought plenty of people out to vote at the F-M Labor Temple in Fargo where lines were wrapped around the parking lot from nearly start to finish of the location’s open hours.
It was an unexpected, but pleasant surprise for those in attendance.
“I expected a little bit of a line, but not quite this long,” democratic voter Alexandra Howatt said. “Especially since we are in a pretty red state. I think it gives me a lot of hope that we might be able to change some things in the country, but also in the state if we have so many Democratic voters.”
On the Republican side, what kind of turnout to expect was also in question early on.
“When you have a primary and there is only one candidate, I was a little apprehensive about how many people would show up,” admits North Dakota Republican party chairman Rick Berg.
But there was also a pleasantly high turnout from GOP voters. While the lines were not out the door, the Holiday Inn ballroom was full of voters.
Both parties say the turnout shows the excitement of North Dakotans from both sides of the political spectrum who are eager to participate in democracy.
“The turnout at our caucus today is really unexpectedly high, it is incredible to see the enthusiasm for the election this year,” says Hanson.
“I think there is a lot of enthusiasm. There is enthusiasm cause North Dakota is doing it right,” says Berg. “We are creating jobs and people’s salaries are going up. It is an exciting place to have a career so I think it is working in North Dakota and people want to see that carried forward at the national level.”