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Community Snapshot: Participation Up For 11th District Caucus

More than 400 people participated in the 11th District Caucus at the Homerun Restaurant and Lounge Renton.

More than 400 people turned out to the 11th District Republican Caucus held in Renton at the Homerun Restaurant and Lounge.

"We had just enough space," said Rex Meyer, 11th District Chairman.

Participants's cars — many of which touted political bumper stickers and signs — filled the parking lot and nearby Tobin Street.

Meyer said the biggest change in this year's caucus is the increased volume of participants.

"Normally it's 60 people," he said. "So this is blowing the roof off."

In the past, people have opened up their homes to host a caucus, Meyer said. However, that requires a lot of coordination.

So this year the district decided to pool the local precincts into one location instead of hosting numerous separate events. But participation was way, way up.

"I've participated in politics since 1963, and I've never seen a turnout like this," said caucus volunteer Bill Roenicke of Renton.

The District prepared for 350 participants and rented overflow space at the Salvation Army. However, on Friday — one day before the Caucus — the District learned it could no longer use the space at the Salvation Army.

The District was able to make due with a rented room down the street at Merrill Gardens.

While results for the 11th District Caucus were not available tonight, the King County Results are: Mitt Romney 45 percent; Ron Paul 27.4 percent; Rick Santorum 17.8 percent; Newt Gingrich 7.6 percent.

Diane Batschi of Renton cast her vote today for Romney.

"He has experience in the real world, and that kind of experience is important," she said adding that he could improve the current job situation.

Dewain Clark of Renton hoped Ron Paul would win.

"I believe in limited government. I want to focus on proctoring our nation and our boarders," he said. "And I oppose pre-emptive foreign aggression."

Despite the increased participation and a slightly late start, the 11th District Cuacus wrapped up by noon.

"I'm just happy that we got the business done," said Meyer.

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