25 Aug 2014
August 25, 2014

#DNCSummer2014 – 2016 Starts Here

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The Rules for the 2016 Democratic Presidential nominating process are fixed as the Democratic National Committee met in Atlanta on August 23, 2014 and adopted the Call to the 2016 Democratic National Convention and Delegate Selection Rules (final drafts below).   The Call and Rules are very similar to those of 2012.  The DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee (RBC) will adopt regulations and circulate those with a model plan and checklist to State Democratic Parties in mid-December 2014.  State Parties must adopt and submit their plans to the RBC by May 4, 2015. The Call needs to be revised in one very important respect – it does not yet identify the date and location of the 2016 Convention.  The cities under consideration are New York City (Brooklyn), Columbus, Philadelphia, Pheonix, and Birmingham, with the decision to likely be announced in September.  (The GOP has already chosen Cleveland, over Dallas).  Other highlights include:

  • The Call reduces the total number of delegates from 3,700 to 3,200, which will give the DNC more flexibility in finding a facility.  The number had been 3,000, but was raised to 3,700 for the 2012 cycle in response to concerns about disproportionate impact of automatic unpledged (super) delegates.
  • This means Virginia gets 83 total base delegates (62 to be elected at the district level, 21 at large), plus 12 pledged party leader and elected official (PLEO) delegates, and 8 alternates, plus 17 automatic unpledged (current count).  (Recall that the total delegation must be equally divided by gender.) We still get 3 pages.
  • The calendar set forth is similar to 2012 – Iowa no earlier than Feb. 1, 2016; New Hampshire, Feb. 9, 2016; Nevada, Feb. 20, 2016; and then South Carolina, Feb. 27, 2016.  Thereafter, the rest of the states can hold their contests between March 1 and June 14, 2016, with all delegates required to be selected by June 25, 2016.
  • The incentives for states to hold later primaries/caucuses and to cluster contests remain – states with contests in April 2016 will receive a 10% bonus, May-June 14 2016 will get 20% bonus, and states that cluster with 2 other states to hold contests on or after March 29, 2016 will receive a 15% bonus.
  • “Gender identity” is added to the non-discrimination list.
  • The Northern Marianas Islands gets delegates (six) for the first time. 
  • The DNC Is given more flexibility re the body administering the convention because the national parties no longer recieve federal funds for national conventions.
  • The Rules now require state party delegate selection plans to identify all filing and petition requirements (we already did that).
  • Plans also must now contain a description of steps taken to assess and improve participation.
  • Parties now “should” (instead of “may”) adopt numerical goals for inclusion programs for the LGBT community, people with disabilities, and youth.
  • If a delegate dies between his or her election and certification, his or her candidate’s authorized representative chooses a replacement (after consultation with the State Party).

The RBC met to finalize the drafts on August 22, 2014.  Mame Reiley’s passing left her seat vacant, but fellow Virginian Susan Swecker was appointed to the committee and her appointment was ratified on Saturday.  We missed Mame a lot this weekend.  But we congratulate Susan and are glad that the RBC again has a member from Virginia.   The RBC again debated the issue of presidential candidate petition requirements.  The current rules provide that a state may not require more than 5,000 signatures to get on the ballot, and at its last meeting the RBC discussed lowering the limit to 2,500.  Four states require close to 5,000 and Virginia, which had the most burdensome requirement in the nation, lowered its limit (for President only, not statewide offices) from 10,000 to 5,000 in 2013 (after years of effort).  The RBC decided it would not make any changes this year, but will consider proposing a model statute that provides maximum ballot access.  Well done!  This means Virgnia, for the first time, will not require a waiver from Rule 14.A to have a primary. I will post additional information about the DNC meeting shortly.  Please friend me on Facebook (Frank Leone) or follow me on twitter <strong>(@demrulz</strong>) for more frequent upates).

  2016 DNC Convention Call - Final Draft (651.6 KiB, 2,631 hits)

  2016 DNC Delegate Selection Rules - Final Draft (410.9 KiB, 2,477 hits)

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