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How to Be a Texas Delegate to the Democratic National Convention

How to Be a Texas Delegate to the Democratic National Convention

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A 2-page guide on how to become a delegate to the Democratic National Convention through the Texas Convention process.
A 2-page guide on how to become a delegate to the Democratic National Convention through the Texas Convention process.

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Published by: Karl-Thomas Musselman on Mar 23, 2012
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Texas will send 288 delegates and 22 alternates to the Demo-cratic National Convention in 2012. These Texans will helpchoose the Democratic nominees for President and VicePresident, and they will also express opinions on key na-tional issues. We encourage you to participate and to runfor national delegate. What follows is, in general terms, anexplanation of how to be a delegate to the National Con-vention. If you w
ant more information, read the “Texas
Democratic Party National Delegate Selection Plan for2012
” and the Delegate Selection Plan Summary
. Bothare available on the Texas Democratic Party website,
www.txdemocrats.org.FILING REQUIREMENTS
To become a delegate to the National Convention you must:1.
Sign this Oath of Affiliation.
“By signing this document, I hereby affiliate myself with
the Texas Democratic party. I understand that by signingthis document, I become ineligible to vote in a primaryelection or participate in a convention of another party,including a party not holding a primary election, duringthe voting year in which this primary election is held. Ifurther swear/affirm that I will support the nominee for
File a Statement of Candidacy with the State Chair noearlier than
April 16
and no later than
May 15, 2012
. Fil-ing forms will be available from the Texas Democratic Partyby March 1, 2012. You may file for any and all of thedelegate categories you are eligible for; and
Be elected by the State Convention in Houston
June8-9, 2012
. If you participate in all stages of the conventionprocess and campaign among delegates to the State Con-vention, you will have a better chance to become a delegate.
Texas Democratic Party will have a two-level conventionsystem in 2012:Level 1. County Conventions (or Senatorial District Con-ventions in urban areas);Level 2. State Convention.Those who attend their County/Senatorial Convention willelect delegates to the State Convention. Those who attend theState Convention will elect delegates to the NationalConvention.
Any qualified voter may attend your County Convention on
Saturday, April 21, 2012
. Counties totally contained in oneSenate District will hold county conventions. Counties havingmore than one or parts of more than one senate district willhold Senatorial District Conventions..Each convention will have a Credentials, Resolutions, Rules,and Nominations Committee. It is permissible for thecommittee members to be appointed in advance of theconvention.The first order of business will be for all participants to sign inand indicate their presidential preference or uncommittedstatus. The sign in may take place before or after theconvention is called to order. Each sign in at the conventionwill count proportionately towards the percentage of delegates
to the State Convention the participant’s preference shall be
allotted. Each sign in will also count as a single vote in the
 participant’s senate district of residence. These single votes
shall be tallied with all the other votes in the senate district to
determine the percentage of the senate district’s District Lev
elDelegates to the Democratic National Convention the
 participant’s preference shall be allotted.
 The County Convention will be called to order by theCounty/Senate District Chair or, should they not be available,any qualified Democrat. The convention delegates will firstelect a Permanent Convention Chair and Secretary to run theconvention.The Chair will announce the results of the sign in.Delegates in each precinct, or sometimes a groupof precincts, gather together to elect delegates and alter-nates to the State Convention. Within the group, the del-egates and alternates are elected at one time, but you castonly one vote. The highest vote-getters are the delegatesand the next highest are the alternates. For example, sup-pose your precinct gets to elect one delegate and one al-ternate to the State Convention. Only one election is heldand you get to cast only one vote. Thus if 10 supportersof Barack Obama are present and all 10 vote for one delegateto the State Convention while 8 supporters of Other Candidateare present and all 8 vote for another delegate, then theBarack Obama representative will be the delegate and theOther Candidate representative will be the alternate.The results of all the elections within the precincts aregiven to the Nominations Committee. This committee then
distributes the “at
large” delegates among each of the presidential candidates so that the county’s delegation reflectseach candidate’s fair share of the conven
tion. For instance, if supporters of Barack Obama made up 50% of yourconvention, the Nominations Committee would work to seethat 50% of the delegates to the State Convention from yourcounty would be his supporters. However, a candidate who
wins less than 15% of the convention doesn’
t have to be givenany at-large delegates.
TDP Rules Article IV A. 10 (a,b) Balancing Delegations
In selecting Delegates and Alternates at all levels, theNominations Committee and the Convention itself 
shall make every effort to select persons so that thedelegation as a whole shall reasonably reflect thepresidential preferences (in presidential years) andthe proportion of women, young people, andminorities present in the district or the state.(b)
At least one-third of the Delegates and one-third of the Alternates of any delegation elected at any levelshall be of the sex opposite of that of the rest of thedelegation.
If you were elected a delegate at your County/SenatorialConvention, you may participate in the State Convention,held
June 8-9, 2012
, in Houston.Although the State Convention will officially come to or-der about 6:00 p.m. on Friday, June 8, there will be issuecaucuses during the day and Senate District Caucuses willmeet from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Friday. Any Senate Dis-trict Caucuses that do not finish their business will recon-vene after the convention recesses for the evening.Each delegate will officially sign-in indicating his/her presi-dential preference or uncommitted status when the delegatepicks up his/her credentials. The sign-ins will be countedstatewide and the totals will be used by the NominationsCommittee on Saturday to distribute the pledged party andelected official delegates and the at-large delegates amongthe presidential candidates. However, any candidate whowins less than 15% of the whole State Convention will notget any at-large delegates.The State Convention elects four types of delegates to theNational Convention:1. 172 pledged senatorial district delegates;2. 28 unpledged party and elected official delegates;3. 31 pledged party and elected official delegates;and4. 57 at-large delegates and 22 alternates.
At the Senatorial District Caucus, supporters of each candi-date gather to elect their share of delegates and alternates tothe National Convention. These must be equally dividedbetween men and women.The number of delegates awarded each candidate is basedon the results of the Presidential sign- in in that district.However, any candidate who does not win 15% of the sign-inin that district will not get any senatorial district delegates.
On Saturday morning, June 9, the Nominations Commit-tee will meet to first nominate unpledged delegates. Theseare set by national party rules as:1. Members of the Democratic National Committee fromTexas;2. The former Speaker of the United State House of Rep-resentatives and the former Chair of the Democratic Na-tional Committee; and3. All Democratic Members of the United States House.These delegates will be immediately ratified by the StateConvention.
Pledged Party and Elected official candidates will have onehour after the Senate District caucuses adjourn to file with theConvention Chair.
After the convention votes on the pledged party and electedofficial delegates, the Nominations Committee will nomi-
nate “at
large” delegates and alternates.The “at
large” delegation is distributed among presidential
candidates in the same way that the pledged party and
elected official delegates are distributed. The entire “at
delegation must be used, if necessary, to make sure that thewhole Texas delegation to the National Convention isequally divided between men and women. It will also beused to meet certain affirmative action goals.
If you are elected a delegate or alternate by the StateConvention, you may participate in the National Conventionin Charlotte
September 3
6, 2012
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