Turnout prompts Republicans to move

With an anticipated turnout of about 500 people, Douglas County Republicans have moved their county convention to a larger venue and changed the date.

Republican Central Committee Chairwoman Maggie Benz said Republicans are expecting eight times their normal turnout for a convention.

"We have about 300 delegates and we are anticipating three-quarters that number in alternates," she said. "You put the numbers together and you are talking about a big convention."

Republicans will gather 8 a.m. March 8 at the Douglas County Fairgrounds.

Benz said she looked back at the numbers for 2004 and 2006 and there were typically 65 people attending the convention.

"The caucus acted as a precipitant in getting people's interest," she said. "We originally reserved the CVIC Hall, but once we figured out our numbers we knew we had to change the venue and the date."

Benz said the increased number of participants means there will be people who've never attended a convention before.

Registration for the Republican Convention is $20 which will pay for coffee and pastries in the morning and Russell's Mercantile will be catering lunch at about 11:30 a.m.

After the convention is called to order at 9 a.m., delegates and alternates will be seated by precinct. Convention business includes the selection of delegates and alternates to the Nevada Republican Convention on April 26, the new Republican Central Committee.

The National Anthem will be sung by Lynn Heller and the convention speaker will be Nevada Central Committee Chairwoman Sue Lowden.

The day will wrap up with work on the county's Republican platforms, which is the means Douglas Republicans communicate what they stand for to the state and national conventions.

Benz said delegates and alternates elected to the state convention will continue to be uncommitted to any candidate.

Mitt Romney, the winner of the straw poll Republicans held during the Jan. 19 caucus, dropped out of the race. Douglas second place winner John McCain is the frontrunner in the nomination race.


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