Class off for caucuses

University classes after 6 p.m. are cancelled Tuesday in accordance with a Minnesota statute that aims to promote attendance at statewide precinct caucuses.

The state’s four major parties will hold caucuses in the 4,000 precincts in Minnesota. The smaller Green and Independence parties will likely not be able to hold events at every precinct, but the Republican and DFL parties are expected to organize caucuses at most if not all precincts.

The caucuses are considered the official opening event of the 2002 elections. Secretary of State Mary Kiffmeyer has been a proponent of getting more voters to the polls.

“Precinct caucuses provide Minnesotans a valuable opportunity to elect local party leadership, to voice opinions on issues, and to consider resolutions on subjects that could become part of the platforms of the political parties, all in a fair and open process,” Kiffmeyer said in a written statement.

State and local government meetings, as well as public education functions, may not convene after 6 p.m. People scheduled to work can legally take time off without pay to attend caucuses if they’ve notified their employer at least 10 days in advance.

– Shira Kantor