How to Become a Delegate to the Democratic National Convention

February 16, 2016

The “Road to Philadelphia” (the site of the 2016 Democratic National Convention in July) begins at your precinct caucus on March 26.

In the 3rd, 4th & 6th Legislative Districts, delegates and alternates will be selected from each precinct to advance to the respective Legislative District Caucuses ("LD Caucuses") on Sunday, April 17.

In the precincts from 7th & 9th Legislative Districts located in Spokane County, delegates and alternates will advance to the Spokane County Convention on May 1.

At the LD Caucuses or County Convention, delegates from the precinct caucuses will elect delegates and alternates to attend the 5th Congressional District (CD) Caucus on Saturday, May 21 at 1:00 pm (the caucus location is yet to be determined, but it is anticipated that it will be in Spokane). 

Three women and two men will be chosen at the 5th CD Caucus to be delegates at the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. Other congressional districts across the state will also be sending delegates to the National Convention --- in all, a total of 67 delegates will be selected by caucus participants at the congressional district level.

The five delegates from the 5th CD will be apportioned between the two candidates based on the results of the March 26 precinct caucuses in the 5th CD, with possible adjustments along the way if delegates selected at the precinct and LD Caucuses fail to participate at the post-precinct caucus levels they were supposed to attend.

Example: At the precinct caucuses on March 26, Candidate A earns 50% of the delegates and Candidate B earns 50% of the delegates. At the LD Caucuses on April 17, some of Candidate A's delegates and alternates don't attend (they forgot or they had a conflict with another activity).  Candidate B will gain support as a result and will send more delegates to the 5th CD Caucus than were otherwise earned at the precinct level caucuses. The ratio of delegates at the 5th CD Caucus controls the apportionment of the five delegates.

5th CD delegates supporting Candidate A will choose the people to be delegates for Candidate A at the National Convention and 5th CD delegates supporting Candidate B will choose the people to be delegates for Candidate B at the National Convention.

Additional delegates to the Democratic National Convention will be chosen by State Committeemen and State Committeewomen representing the 49 legislative districts at the Washington State Democratic Convention in Tacoma on Sunday, June 19. 

The selection of delegates at the State Convention takes into account the demographics of the delegates previously selected by the various congressional district caucuses and considers the State Party’s inclusion goals. We'll discuss those inclusion goals in a future posting.

In addition, a limited number of alternates will be selected at the State Convention to go to Philadelphia in the event that any delegate is not able to participate in convention activities.

If you're interested in being selected as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention, some paperwork will have to be submitted to the State Party in May (to be selected at the 5th CD Caucus) or June (to be selected at the State Convention). We'll post those deadlines as they draw closer and will publicize them. We'll also provide a link to download the paperwork from the State Party website when it becomes available.