caucus race(redirected from caucus)
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1. Any event or activity that requires a great amount of time, energy, and commitment, but which is or is considered to be ultimately futile or arbitrary. A reference to Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, in which everyone in the Caucus race runs around in a circle and then suddenly wins a prize—thus serving no real purpose at all. We were all told that the essay had to cover everything we had learned during the course. But in the end, it was just a caucus race because it didn't even affect our final grade.
2. An event, system, or activity that benefits all parties involved. Also a reference to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Fair trade competition between our countries will establish itself as a caucus race, as the increased commerce will help bolster both countries' economies.
3. A political competition between members of the same party, as for the candidacy to run in an election or a position within the party's infrastructure. Primarily heard in US, South Africa. The caucus race before the election highlighted the candidates' fundamental differences.
See also: race
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.