Published on April 15th, 2020 | by Brittney Bush Bollay0
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Washington State Democrats | Every Race in Every Place
National Delegate Selection FAQ
How will COVID-19 impact the WA State delegate selection process?
In order to comply with social distancing protocols and limit the spread of COVID-19 throughout Washington State, some revisions have been made to the delegate selection process.
● The Legislative District Caucuses used to select delegates to the state convention are now shifting to an entirely digital voting process, which will be modeled after the procedure used to fill state legislative vacancies and will include all Precinct Committee Officers in each legislative district. Due to the remote nature of these revisions, registering online by April 24th is now a requirement in order to be considered for delegate to State Convention and the CD level delegate selection procedures.
● The Congressional District Caucuses are also shifting to a similar remote voting process. The voting pool for the Congressional District delegates to National Convention will be those who were elected as delegate within their legislative district, which has not changed from the original process.
What is a Democratic National Convention delegate?
A national delegate is a person chosen in each state to represent their state at the 2020 Democratic National Convention. They may vote on the Democratic Party Platform at the national level, as well as the 2020 Democratic vice presidential and presidential nominees!
Am I eligible to run for national delegate?
● You must be a WA State registered voter (or pre-registered and 18 years old by Nov. 3, 2020)
● You must be willing to publicly identify as a Democrat
Where do I register to run for national delegate?
Submit a letter of intent by mail to the State Party Office no later than May 4th if you wish to run for delegate to National Convention. This form can be found on page 107 of the Washington State Democratic Central Committee’s Delegate Selection and Affirmative Action Plan on our website. You must also indicate a presidential preference of either Joe Biden or Bernie Sanders (the only two candidates to receive an allocation of delegates in our state.) Register no later than April 24th if you wish to run for delegate to State Convention.
How many national delegates will the Washington State Democratic Party send to the Democratic National Convention?
Washington State will send 109 national delegates plus 7 alternates to the Democratic National Convention in August 17-20, 2020 in Milwaukee, WI. This total is broken down as follows:
● 20 automatic delegates
● 12 Party Leader & Elected Officials (PLEO) delegates elected in June 12-14, 2020
● 58 Congressional District (CD) delegates elected in May 30, 2020
● 19 At-Large delegates elected in June 12-14, 2020
● 7 Alternate delegates elected in June 12-14, 2020
If you are running for a national delegate position, you will likely be running for either one of the 58 Congressional District positions, 19 At-Large positions, or 7 Alternate positions.
What will determine how many delegates each presidential candidate receives?
Washington State voted in a mail-in Presidential Primary election on March 10th, 2020. The results of the Presidential Primary election are used to allocate our state’s delegates to Democratic presidential candidates. Any candidate who received at least 15% of the vote within a Congressional District has been allocated delegates to the Democratic National Convention. Joseph R. Biden and Bernie Sanders are the only two candidates to receive an allocation of delegates in WA state.
Who can vote in Washington State’s Democratic Presidential Primary?
All Washington State voters were eligible to vote in the mail-in primary election on March 10th, 2020 in either the Republican or Democratic Primary. Voters received instructions to ONLY mark a candidate preference in either the Democratic or Republican Primary election, as voting in both primaries would render their ballot invalid. Voters did not need to “register” as a member of the party who’s primary in which they voted in, but they needed to sign a declaration on the outside of their ballot declaring their affiliation with one of the two parties for their vote to be counted.
How do I become a national delegate?
1. The best way to become a delegate is to start by running for delegate to State Convention within your local Legislative District. First, you must register here no later than April 24th: https://wademscaucus2020.azurewebsites.net/. If you do not have easy access to the internet, please contact the chair of your Legislative District for help registering as a candidate for delegate.
a. After submitting your candidacy registration using the link above, the next best step is to get elected at the Legislative District level as a delegate to the Washington State Democratic Convention, which will include the ability to vote for national delegates on the Congressional District (CD) level. After registration closes on April 24th, Precinct Committee Officers within each Legislative District will have between April 26th- May 3rd to virtually elect their LD’s allocated delegates to State Convention (allocated according to the March 10th Presidential Primary). Candidates will be notified of the results on May 8th. This will result in the election of 1400 delegates to State Convention. If you are elected as a delegate to State Convention, you can vote on the State Party Platform and participate in the State Convention festivities in Tacoma from June 12th- 14th, 2020.
2. After this, your next step is to run for delegate at the Congressional District level on May 30th. It is not required to have won an LD delegate position to run for national delegate at the CD level. Alternatively, you may skip the LD level, and run for national delegate beginning at the CD level on May 30th. In order to be considered an eligible candidate at this level, you must submit a letter of intent to stand for election no later than May 4th to the State Party Office by mail. It is also strongly encouraged that you email this form to firstname.lastname@example.org, as covid-19 has limited the opportunities that staff have to retrieve and file mail. This form can be found on pg. 107 of the DSAAP.
a. First, candidates for national delegate will be grouped [remotely] by CD, and then grouped by presidential preference. Those who were elected at the LD level will then digitally vote to elect their CD’s allocated share of the 58 Congressional District delegates (listed below) to the Democratic National Convention. It is important to note that while anyone who meets the eligibility requirements can run for national delegate at the CD level, only state-level delegates elected at the LD level may vote for CD delegates to National Convention. If you are elected at the CD level as a national delegate, you can vote on the DNC Platform and vote for the presidential nominee at the National Convention in Milwaukee (August 2020).
The 58 CD delegates to National Convention (allocated based on democratic density within a CD) are divided as follows:
CD 1: 6 delegates
CD 2: 6 delegates
CD 3: 5 delegates
CD 4: 3 delegates
CD 5: 4 delegates
CD 6: 6 delegates
CD 7: 11 delegates
CD 8: 5 delegates
CD 9: 7 delegates
CD 10: 5 delegates
What happens if I don’t register by April 24th and miss my chance to run for delegate at the LD level?
If you do not register by April 24th and fail to appear on the ballot within your Legislative District, you can still run for national delegate at the Congressional District level on May 30th. However, you will not be able to vote for these delegates because you were not elected as a delegate to State Convention within your Legislative District. This may require more campaigning, but as long as we receive your letter of intent to stand for election as a national delegate or alternate by May 4th (page 107 of the DSAAP) so that your name is included on the ballot on May 30th to run for national delegate, you have the opportunity to attend the National Convention as one of the 58 CD delegates. You can also run for one of the 19 At- Large (or 12 PLEO, if you are eligible) or 7 alternate delegate positions on June 14th following the conclusion of the State Convention, which only requires that you submit the letter of intent to stand for election as a national delegate. It does not require that you have won any LD or CD level delegate positions.
What happens at the WA Democratic State Convention? (June 12th-14th)
The WA State Democratic Convention will take place in Tacoma, WA on July 12th- 14th, 2020, where all State Convention delegates will vote on the State Party’s platform and participate in the State Convention festivities. In addition, WSDCC members representing the 49 Legislative Districts in our state will elect 12 PLEO, 19 At Large and 7 Alternate delegates to the Democratic National Convention, following the conclusion of the State Convention. You do not need to have been elected as a delegate to State Convention to run for an At Large or Alternate delegate position to the Democratic National Convention. At Large and Alternate delegate positions are open to any registered (or pre- registered and 18 years old on or before Nov. 3, 2020) WA state voter.
What happens at the Democratic National Convention? (August 17th-20th)
The Democratic National Convention will take place in Milwaukee, WI on August 17th-20th, 2020. Democrats from Washington State will send 109 delegates and 7 alternates to participate in the National Convention alongside delegates from across the nation.
How much will attending the National Convention as a delegate cost?
National delegates and alternates are responsible for all costs such as flights, food, hotel, etc. All delegates are required by the Democratic National Committee to stay in their state’s host hotel, which in Washington’s case is the Hilton DoubleTree O’Hare Airport. The Host Committee provides daily transportation to and from the assigned hotel to the convention facility in Milwaukee. Delegates and Alternates must attend each morning’s delegation breakfast meeting at the hotel to obtain their convention credentials for that day’s session. Only delegates and alternates are entitled to convention credentials. Plan to fundraise or budget approximately $3,500- $5,000 if you are elected to attend the Democratic National Convention as a delegate.
Where do I find more information?
The Washington State Delegate Selection and Affirmative Action Plan (DSAAP) may be found on the State Party’s website under Party Documents. You can also visit www.waelectioncenter.com for additional materials. Please email email@example.com for any questions you may have.