What Is A Precinct?

The Most Powerful Office in the Land by Rick Herron
(Rick Herron wrote this article in 1988 to go into the public domain for the benefit of the average voter in America who did not understand how our nation's precinct system works. Mr. Herron has not been consulted on the posting of this public domain article on our website, nor should any assume that Mr. Herron agrees with anything else on this website. His brilliant synopsis of the Precinct System can benefit any American who wants to know HOW power is attained and wielded in the USA.)
This speech was given to people considering running for Precinct Executive in the Republican Party. The same strategy can be applied to the Democratic Party.
The First Law of Civics

is that People Are Policy. And what that means is if you want to change the law, if you want to change the policy you have to change the people that make the policy. And if you doubt that, try writing a letter to Senator Howard Metzenbaum sometime.

"So how does the law change? Well, these Senators or Congressman up there -- they make a decision, they pass a bill. The law changes. That's basically all there is to it. If during a vote there are more of THEM, then THEY make the policy. If on the other hand there are more of US, then WE make policy. Personally I would like it better if we made policy.

So how do legislators get in there where they're in a position to change the policy?

"Well, they're elected in the November General Election in accordance with

The Second Law of Civics

which is: If Your Name Is Not On The Ballot, You're Not Going To Win. So in order for our friends to win the November General Election so they can change the policy we have to get their names on the ballot.

"Well, how do we get their names on the ballot in November? Well, we get their names on the November ballot by ensuring that they win the Party Primary election in May. So people who want to be Senators and Congressmen have to run in the primary and then if they win, they get their name on the ballot in November.

"So if we want to change the people who change the policy, it becomes our job to make sure that our friends win the primary. So how do we ensure that our friends win the primary in May? Victory in May is based on

The Third Law of Civics:

Only Candidates Endorsed By The Party Win The Primary. It's just that simple. There might be six Republicans wanting to be Congressmen in the First or Second Congressional District. And they're all running in the primary. Only one of them is going to win and that's invariably the one that's endorsed by the Party. And there's a very good reason for that. Most voters are just like myself. They don't have time to study all the issues or candidates.

Election day comes up on them just like it does on me. Oh my goodness, it's election day already. They go down to vote, and someone outside the polling place hands them a sample ballot that was published by their Party. They take the sample ballot in, they look at the sample ballot and they start voting. They're trusting their Party to have made the correct decision in endorsing these people.

So if we are going to change the people who change the policy we must ensure that our friends are endorsed by the Party so their names get on the sample ballot.

"So, where do these Party endorsements come from? Who is the party? For all practical purposes the party is made up of members of the Executive Committee [of your county]. And it is the Executive Committee that hands out the Party's endorsements.

Every County has their own Democratic Executive Committee and Republican Executive Committee, and we have ours in this county. These Committees decide who's name will go on the sample ballots which are distributed outside the polls at the primaries. The endorsed candidates win; they invariably do.

After winning the primary they move on to the November General Election. The winner there goes on to Columbus (Ohio) or Washington D.C. and changes the policy. So it turns out these endorsements are very important. Because if our candidate doesn't get endorsed for the Primary he doesn't go any further in the process. That's the end for us. It is important that we understand that in order to get to Columbus or Washington to change the policy, we have to succeed at each one of those steps. If we miss any one of them, the whole thing fails.

So, if we are going to change the policy, it becomes our job to get as many of our friends as possible onto the Executive Committee, so that we can ensure that our friends get the Party's endorsement at the Primary step. So what is the Executive Committee that passes out these endorsements?

Wouldn't you agree with me that these are pretty important people, even more important than the people they endorse? Do you know any members of your Party's Executive Committee? Where do they come from? Who are they? How do you get to be on the Executive Committee? Do they run recruiting advertisements in the paper? Do you go down to the unemployment office and tell them you want to be on the Executive Committee? No.

To ensure that our friends have a majority on the Executive Committee so that we can ultimately change the policy we must help them get elected to the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee of the Party is elected every two years by the members of the Party's Central Committee.

"So what is this Central Committee that elects the members of the Executive Committee? Wouldn't you agree with me that these are pretty important people, even more important that the executive committee that they elect? Where do they come from? Do you know anybody on the Central Committee? Did you ever hear of the Central Committee? Well, what is it?

The Central Committee is made up of one person from each precinct in the County. (Note: your precinct consists of about five or six streets around your house.) Our County has 984 precincts [this was in 1988], so there are 984 members on the Hamilton County Republican Central Committee. And each one of those members is called a Precinct Executive. The terms "Precinct Executive" and "Member of the Central Committee" are synonymous. This very important Committee meets at a very important meeting once every two years where the Executive Committee is elected.

So if we want to change the people that make the policy it becomes our job to ensure that our friends have a majority on the Party's Central Committee, so that our friends are elected to the Executive Committee, so that our friends receive the party endorsement, so that our friends win the primary, so that our friends can get on the ballot in the November General Election, so we can help them win there, so they can go on to the state capital or Washington D.C. and change the policy, that is, change the laws.

The bottom line is that membership in your Party's Central Committee is the Highest Office in the land. The reason that this is so is because the Central Committee decides who all of the policy makers are going to be. So if we want to change the policy it becomes our job to become members of our Party's Central Committee.

And that's why we're asking you to run for Precinct Executive: so that you will become a member of the Central Committee; so that then you will decide who becomes a member of your Party's Executive Committee; so that next a Constitutionist majority on the Executive Committee will endorse a Constitutionist slate of candidates for the Party Primary Election; so that only our Constitutionist friends are on the ballot for the November General Election; and then, finally a Constitutionists majority in the state and federal legislatures will change the policy and keep it changed.

Because there can be only one member of the Central Committee from each of the 984 precincts in Hamilton County, it is imperative that we locate, and encourage to join with us, at least one Constitutionist from each precinct. That is why if each of us would do this in our own precinct then we will succeed. And so we conclude with

The Fourth Law of Civics:

"The Precinct Executive turns out to be THE MOST POWERFUL OFFICE IN THE LAND. And that's why we are doing what we're doing."

(End of Mr. Herron's speech -- now turned into an article which can benefit all the nation, by benefiting the nation, benefit the whole world.)