How the Republican Party Organizes to Support Candidates

From local Precinct Caucuses to the National Convention, the Republican Party organizes itself to support candidates for office.

How does the Party Structure work?

The Republican Party comprises thousands of individuals, with people selected to serve various roles locally, at the state level, and nationally. At the local level, as indicated in the above diagram, the process includes a series of gatherings or Conventions that result in the submission of resolutions, election of delegates, endorsement of candidates, and other party business.

The local party is called a Basic Political Organizational Unit, or BPOU, sometimes also referred to as your local GOP or Republican Party. For Scott County Minnesota, the BPOU is called Scott County GOP.

When and Where are Precinct Caucuses Being Held?

Precinct caucuses will be held on February 27th, 2024 at 7:00 pm. These will be held at various locations around Scott County. Please check back in early February for location information. Announcements may be found on local and state websites, social media, and in local newspapers to inform the public of caucus locations.

Caucuses are organized for local Precincts all across the state. You may also check the MN Secretary of State’s website to find your caucus location.

What is a Precinct Caucus?

Precinct caucuses are meetings run by Minnesota’s political parties. They are the first in a series of meetings where parties may endorse candidates, select delegates, and set goals and values (called party platforms). Find your precinct by searching the MN SOS Pollfinder website.

Who Can Participate in a Caucus?

To participate, you must be eligible to vote in the next general election and live in the precinct. You also must generally agree with the principles of the political party hosting the caucus, which can be found on our home page

What Happens at Caucus?

In general, there are three main activities at caucus:

1. Elect Precinct Officers. These are volunteers who organize political activities for the precinct. Activities could include maintaining contact lists, organizing and leading political meetings, assisting with campaign efforts, attending Full Committee meetings, and performing such other functions as may from time to time be assigned to them by the Executive Committee. More information can be found in the SCGOP Constitution.

2. Introduce Resolutions. A resolution is an idea or important issue that the party should consider adopting as a major principle. For example, a resolution could be introduced that explains the problem of critical race theory in public schools and that calls for the party to actively oppose it, i.e. work towards legislation that eliminates it. Resolutions require the support of enough caucus attendees to be taken to the next convention. As the resolution gathers support, it could eventually end up being adopted by the party at the national level. Examples of resolutions at the national level can be seen here.

3. Elect Delegates. Delegates attend conventions and vote for/endorse candidates at the state and federal levels, including the Governor. To become a Delegate, one must first gather support within the precinct and be elected at the caucus. The office of Delegate is for a 2-year term, where party leadership is also elected in the off years. 

Information on Becoming a Delegate at the District, State, and National Levels

A select number of Republicans will gather for the Republican National Convention. If you want to be a delegate or alternate to that convention and cast a vote for our nominee, here are a few things you might want to know.

  • Minnesota is allotted 39 Delegates and 36 Alternates to the RNC Convention.
  • Three Delegates are already determined (the State Party Chair, the Republican National Committeewoman, and the Republican National Committeeman).
  • Each of Minnesota's eight Congressional Districts elects three Delegates and three Alternates.
  • The remaining 12 Delegates and 12 Alternates are elected "at-large" at our Republican State Convention.
  • Please visit the MN GOP website to download a copy of the info packet with all the required forms and to read through more information to get your questions answered. Because there are deadlines, interested parties should act promptly.

What Else Can I Do to Contribute?

  • Be an informed person in your community. Someone who can motivate and mobilize people to get involved and vote.
  • Attend party meetings; Scott County GOP meetings, County Commissioner meetings, School Board meetings, etc. Start showing up and speaking up so that people recognize you, know you, and can plug you into the process somewhere. Finding committed people is difficult, and simply showing up regularly speaks volumes about your reliability and willingness to be involved.
  • Attend events and support party efforts. Donate (and take advantage of the PCR program), RSVP, and attend special events by Scott County GOP, volunteer, etc.
  • Network. Spread the word, get people excited, and invite your family, friends, and neighbors to caucus and other events!

Is There Training?

The best training is the school of hard knocks, which starts with attending meetings (mentioned above) and getting involved. Like anything, book learning or even instruction is one thing, but doing it is another. There are, however, a few good places to acquire training, with links below.