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Precinct Caucuses tonight: Show up for gun rights!

Victory goes to those who show up

Precinct caucuses offer an incredible chance to influence the political process in our state. The very few people who show up set the course of the party for the year.

By showing up at the caucus, you can steer your political party toward gun rights!

Here’s all you have to do:

1. Find your caucus:

http://caucusfinder.sos.state.mn.us/

2. Be prepared:

Print several copies of the pro-gun-rights resolution for your party, and fill in your name and contact info:

Republican Party of Minnesota: http://www.gocra.org/pub/GOP-RKBA-2012.pdf

Minnesota DFL Party: http://www.gocra.org/pub/DFL-RKBA-2012.pdf

3. Go to the caucus:

Caucuses start at 7 p.m. tonight. Show up around 6:15 – 6:30 to sign in and find your precinct.


4. Present the RKBA resolution:

When the time comes for resolutions to be presented, hand over a copy.  You will have a brief opportunity to explain the need for the resolution. Others will have the opportunity to speak for or against it as well.


5. Become a delegate:

Submit your name as a candidate for delegate (or alternate, if all delegate slots are filled). You will then have the opportunity to affect  policy at the next level.

There’s more info below about the process, but just remember this: victory goes to those who show up, so go to your caucus, and invite your pro-gun-rights neighbors!

The Importance of being a Delegate

Delegates select who is running and what the issues are!  That’s why being a delegate is so important: all politics is local and most things in politics are decided by those who show up.

The Precinct caucus is the entry zone to affecting politics from the grass roots. All of the later conventions select from delegates elected at the previous level. This is your chance to get involved and have your opinions heard through interactions and support of candidates, as well as affecting the party platform with resolutions.

Precinct caucuses are open to any eligible voter. Eligible voters attending the caucus are asked to sign in and to be comfortable supporting the positions of the party.  At the most grass roots level, delegates are selected from the Basic Political Operating Unit (BPOU) — your local precinct. The process then continues in a pyramid fashion from the Precinct Caucus to the BPOU Convention, to the Congressional District Convention to the State Party Convention. At each level, delegates are chosen to pass on to the next. You cannot skip a step! You must be present to win! The only way to get inside and affect your party is to start at the Precinct Caucuses and work your way up.

Over the course of these caucuses and conventions, resolutions on the important issues of the day, and endorsements of candidates for elected office take place.  Resolutions continue on to the state convention and make their way into the party platform. Platforms offer a clear picture of the philosophical and policy goals of the party. The degree that candidates support or distance themselves from the platform provides insight into those candidates’ positions.

Endorsing candidates is far and away the most important activity of delegates. The endorsement provides candidates with the benefits of the party including access to volunteer lists, party organizations, and, of course, party money.  Endorsed candidates have access to party funds as well as state campaign finance money.  Many elections have been won or lost at an endorsing convention. In a horse race, those who pick the horses can determine who wins the race!

Remember: parties, political campaigns, and politics are run by people, and people listen to those they remember and recognize. Being able to say, “Hello, we met at the caucus“ is a much stronger opening than a cold call.

Resolution for an amendment to the Minnesota constitution:

WHEREAS self-defense, and defense of home, family and liberty is a fundamental human right; and

WHEREAS the Minnesota Constitution contains no provision guaranteeing this right; and

WHEREAS forty-three other state constitutions contain a guarantee of such rights;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Minnesota ____ Party support an amendment to the Constitution of the State of Minnesota to guarantee the right to keep and bear arms which states as follows:

The right of individuals to acquire, keep, possess, transport, carry, transfer, and use arms for defense of life, liberty, self, family, and others, sanctity of dwelling, and for all legitimate purposes, is fundamental and shall not be denied or curtailed. Any restriction must be subjected to strict scrutiny. Registration, mandatory licensing, special taxation, fees, or any other measure, regardless of type, manner, or purpose, that suppresses or discourages the free exercise of this right, is forbidden.

Get educated, show up, get involved, and make a difference. Thank you!

Stand Your Ground is back! Contact these senators today

Last year, GOCRA worked with Minnesota legislators to introduce the Defense of Dwelling and Person Act, a sweeping set of legislation that would fundamentally rebalance Minnesota law to protect and support the rights of law-abiding citizens. Due to the showdown over the budget, our bill didn’t get the support and attention it needed. But you can’t keep a good bill down, and…

Stand Your Ground is Back!

We need your help. Please contact the members of the Senate Finance Committee, and urge them to vote YES on HF1467/SF1357. Their contact info is below. Sen. Claire A. Robling Committee Chair (651) 296-4123 sen.claire.robling@senate.mn Sean R. Nienow Vice Chair (651) 296-5419 sen.sean.nienow@senate.mn Richard J. Cohen Ranking Minority Member (651) 296-5931 Mail Form Terri E. Bonoff (651) 296-4314 sen.terri.bonoff@senate.mn Michelle L. Fischbach (651) 296-2084 sen.michelle.fischbach@senate.mn Barb Goodwin (651) 296-4334 Mail Form David W. Hann (651) 296-1749 Mail Form Bill Ingebrigtsen (651) 297-8063 sen.bill.ingebrigtsen@senate.mn Keith Langseth (651) 296-3205 Mail Form Doug Magnus (651) 296-5650 sen.doug.magnus@senate.mn Scott J. Newman (651) 296-4131 sen.scott.newman@senate.mn Gen Olson (651) 296-1282 sen.gen.olson@senate.mn Mike Parry (651) 296-9457 sen.mike.parry@senate.mn LeRoy A. Stumpf (651) 296-8660 Mail Form Linda Higgins (651) 296-9246 sen.linda.higgins@senate.mn You can email many of them at once by pasting this list into your email client: sen.claire.robling@senate.mn ; sen.sean.nienow@senate.mn ; sen.terri.bonoff@senate.mn ; sen.michelle.fischbach@senate.mn ; sen.bill.ingebrigtsen@senate.mn ; sen.doug.magnus@senate.mn ; sen.scott.newman@senate.mn ; sen.gen.olson@senate.mn ; sen.mike.parry@senate.mn ; sen.linda.higgins@senate.mn Need that with commas instead? No problem! sen.claire.robling@senate.mn , sen.sean.nienow@senate.mn , sen.terri.bonoff@senate.mn , sen.michelle.fischbach@senate.mn , sen.bill.ingebrigtsen@senate.mn , sen.doug.magnus@senate.mn , sen.scott.newman@senate.mn , sen.gen.olson@senate.mn , sen.mike.parry@senate.mn , sen.linda.higgins@senate.mn If you use those lists above, don’t forget these senators: Richard J. Cohen’s Mail Form Barb Goodwin’s Mail Form David W. Hann’s Mail Form Keith Langseth’s Mail Form LeRoy A. Stumpf’s Mail Form Here’s some background on the bill:
HF1467/SF1357 Summary
HF1467/SF1357, the Defense of Dwelling and Person Act of 2011, brings “Stand Your Ground” protections to Minnesota, restores the presumption that a person using self defense is innocent until proven guilty, enhances Castle Doctrine, prevents the state from seizing guns during an emergency (remember Hurricane Katrina?), extends purchase permits to five years, improves carry reciprocity with other states and requires the government to do its job to serve law-abiding citizens
The full text of the bill can be found here: https://www.revisor.mn.gov/bin/bldbill.php?bill=S1357.0.html&session=ls87
Here’s some more detail:
Adds Stand Your Ground
SF1357 brings “Stand Your Ground” protections to Minnesota, removing the requirement that an intended victim of violent crime must retreat from a place where he has a right to be before using deadly force in self defense.
Enhances Castle Doctrine
The bill also strengthens Minnesota’s “Castle Doctrine,” clarifying when and under what circumstances individuals can legally use deadly force to protect themselves in their homes and vehicles. In addition, it creates a presumption that, when faced with an apparent home invasion, carjacking or kidnapping attempt, a person may use deadly force in self defense.
Prevents Gun Seizures During a State of Emergency
Taking a lesson from the problems in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, the bill also bans government agencies from seizing guns or ammo, revoking permits to purchase or carry, closing gun shops, or otherwise suspending our constitutional rights during a civil emergency — or at any other time. It also prohibits law enforcement officers from seizing a person’s gun, unless the person is arrested, or the gun is evidence of a crime.
Extends Purchase Permits to Five Years
The bill also extends the validity of handgun purchase permits from one to five years, adds an annual background check for people holding those five-year permits. It requires the Minnesota Department of Human Services and state courts to make their background check records available electronically to authorized agencies, including the National Instant Background Check system (NICS) — a process that was supposed to have been in place 16 years ago! This should reduce purchasing delays as well as ensuring that state and federal checks produce the same results.
The bill also borrows a page from the Permit to Carry law, providing a more robust appeal process for denied purchase permits, and requiring that police chiefs and sheriffs whose purchase permit denials are overturned must pay the applicants’ legal costs.
Adds Universal Carry Permit Acceptance
Of particular interest to carry permit holders, the final article of the bill updates our carry permit reciprocity standards, allowing people holding carry permits from any other state to carry in Minnesota (under Minnesota law, of course). This should result in a large increase in the number of states where Minnesota permit holders can carry, since many states allow other states’ permit holders to carry on a reciprocal basis.

HF1467/SF1357 Summary

HF1467/SF1357, the Defense of Dwelling and Person Act of 2011, brings “Stand Your Ground” protections to Minnesota, restores the presumption that a person using self defense is innocent until proven guilty, enhances Castle Doctrine, prevents the state from seizing guns during an emergency (remember Hurricane Katrina?), extends purchase permits to five years, improves carry reciprocity with other states and requires the government to do its job to serve law-abiding citizens The full text of the bill can be found here: https://www.revisor.mn.gov/bin/bldbill.php?bill=S1357.0.html&session=ls87 Here’s some more detail:

Adds Stand Your Ground

SF1357 brings “Stand Your Ground” protections to Minnesota, removing the requirement that an intended victim of violent crime must retreat from a place where he has a right to be before using deadly force in self defense.

Enhances Castle Doctrine

The bill also strengthens Minnesota’s’s “Castle Doctrine,” clarifying when and under what circumstances individuals can legally use deadly force to protect themselves in their homes and vehicles. In addition, it creates a presumption that, when faced with an apparent home invasion, carjacking or kidnapping attempt, a person may use deadly force in self defense.

Prevents Gun Seizures During a State of Emergency

Taking a lesson from the problems in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, the bill also bans government agencies from seizing guns or ammo, revoking permits to purchase or carry, closing gun shops, or otherwise suspending our constitutional rights during a civil emergency — or at any other time. It also prohibits law enforcement officers from seizing a person’s gun, unless the person is arrested, or the gun is evidence of a crime.

Extends Purchase Permits to Five Years

The bill also extends the validity of handgun purchase permits from one to five years, adds an annual background check for people holding those five-year permits. It requires the Minnesota Department of Human Services and state courts to make their background check records available electronically to authorized agencies, including the National Instant Background Check system (NICS) — a process that was supposed to have been in place 16 years ago! This should reduce purchasing delays as well as ensuring that state and federal checks produce the same results. The bill also borrows a page from the Permit to Carry law, providing a more robust appeal process for denied purchase permits, and requiring that police chiefs and sheriffs whose purchase permit denials are overturned must pay the applicants’ legal costs.

Adds Universal Carry Permit Acceptance

Of particular interest to carry permit holders, the final article of the bill updates our carry permit reciprocity standards, allowing people holding carry permits from any other state to carry in Minnesota (under Minnesota law, of course). This should result in a large increase in the number of states where Minnesota permit holders can carry, since many states allow other states’ permit holders to carry on a reciprocal basis.