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DNC RBC Continues Delegate Selection Work

The Democratic National Committee Rules & Bylaws Committee met on July 8-9 to continue its revisions of the 2024 Convention Delegate Selection Rules, and the Call to the 2024 Convention and continue discussion of which states should hold contests in the prior to the March 5-June 11, 2024 Window period.  July 8 was broadcast on C-SPAN and you can see it  here.  No final decisions were made and the RBC will meet again the week of July 17 and on August 5 and 6.  The August meeting will adopt the final draft Rules and Call to be presented to the full DNC meeting on September 8-10.  In anticipation of the 2020 Democratic nomination process, numerous revisions were made in the documents to respond to the mandate of the Unity Reform Commission.  This year, except for timing, most issues are more limited.  Outstanding issues include:

  • Timing:  Up to 5 states that will receive approval to hold contests prior to March 5, 2024.  Since 2008, those states have been Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina.  States applied Nevada, Colorado, New Hampshire, Iowa, Washington, South Carolina, New Jersey, Minnesota, George, Puerto Rico, Texas, Michigan, Connecticut, Oklahoma, Delaware, Illinois, and Maryland.
  • Bonus Delegates:  To discourage Frontloading, since 2008 the DNC has awarded bonus delegates to states that hold contests in April (10%), May-June (20%), and states that cluster and hold primaries after March (15%).  This hasn’t really worked very well, and will be reconsidered, although we would like to have some incentives.
  • Total number of Delegates:  For various reasons, Democratic National Conventions have grown in size since 2012 and 2020 had 4,543 delegates (almost twice as many as the Republican National Convention).  This large delegation offers maximum opportunity for participation, but limits the potential venues for the convention.
  • Ranked Choice Voting:  This practice of voting for multiple candidates is not currently addressed in the rules and would likely apply (if at all) to a small number of caucus states.  Rules revisions may or may not address the practice (which I think is of limited value, at least in processes that use proportional representation).
  • Virtual Meetings:  We re reviewing the documents to make changes to clarify the acceptability of virtual meetings under certain circumstances.
  • DNC Charter and Bylaw revisions:  An ad-hoc working group discussed some potential changes to these documents, most if not all of which are clarifications, not major changes.
  • Voter Protection/Election Administration:  the Rules currently require states to provide information about voter protection issues in their delegate selection plan – In connection with the DNC Voter Protection and Civic Engagement Department, I have offered minor updates.
  • Several minor technical clarifications, updates, and revisions.