VDP changes delegate plan, virtual in-state convention, caucuses

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VDP changes delegate plan, virtual in-state convention, caucuses

Sun, 04/05/2020 - 9:54am -- tim
Vermont Business Magazine On Saturday evening, the Vermont Democratic Party’s State Committee -- meeting remotely -- approved a series of changes to the party’s Delegate Selection Plan. 
“We believe these updates to our Delegate Selection Plan will keep participants safe while still allowing for all interested Vermont Democratic voters full opportunity to participate in an open, fair and transparent process,” said Vermont Democratic Party Chair Terje Anderson. “We have worked closely with the DNC, the Biden and Sanders campaigns, and other stakeholders to adjust our system to protect public health, while still encouraging grassroots involvement. We’re looking forward to engaging Democrats across the state to be part of electing our state and national delegates.”
The election of State Convention  delegates, originally scheduled to take place at town-level caucuses on April 21, will now be replaced with a process allowing voters to sign up on-line to be a caucus participant and file to become a State Convention delegate. The original May 30th State Convention, will be conducted virtually, including election of delegates and National Committeewoman/Committeeman.  Any voter who cast a ballot in the March 3 Vermont Democratic primary is eligible to take part in the process.

Vermont will send 16 pledged delegates to the Democratic National Convention, now scheduled for the week of August 17.  Based on the results of the March 3 Presidential primary, 11 of those delegates will be pledged to Senator Bernie Sanders, and five will be pledged to Vice President Joe Biden.

“In these exceptional and uncertain times, we are more determined than ever to defeat Donald Trump,” said Anderson. “This is an essential step to bringing Vermont Democrats together in that effort.”

Here is an outline of the newly-adopted Delegate Selection Plan:
More information will be available in the coming days.
  1. In lieu of town caucuses on April 21, 2020 voters can sign up online to be a caucus participant, and to file to become a state convention delegate. Forms will be available online at vtdemocrats.org/2020 from Monday, April 6, 2020 until 7:30 PM on Tuesday, April 21, 2020
  1. Based on the town by town vote totals from the March 3, 2020 primary election, the numbers of state convention delegates is 1,307 -- 910 are pledged to Senator Bernie Sanders and 397 are pledged to former Vice President Joe Biden. 
  1. After 7:30 PM on April 21, 2020, the Party will evaluate the number of people who have filed as Biden and Sanders state convention delegates. If the number for Biden is 397 or under, all those who filed (regardless of county of residence) will be declared elected as Biden state convention delegates. If the number for Sanders is 910 or under, all those who filed will be declared elected as Sanders state convention delegates.  
  1. If either the Biden or Sanders numbers exceed the statewide number of State Convention delegates (397 and 910 respectively), the Party will default to allocating delegates by county (based on Presidential Primary results and the number of delegates previously allocated to the towns in that county).
  1. For each candidate, any county where the number of delegates who have filed is equal to or less than the number of state convention delegates awarded to them, all those who have filed will be declared elected. 
  1. In each county/presidential caucus where the total number of delegate candidates exceeds the number allocated for that county/candidate, the Party  will conduct an election to select their delegates from the county in question for the candidate in question. The election will be held online with secure ballots sent to each registered participant and the election will be held open for 7 days. 
  1. The filing deadline to run for District-Level National Convention Delegate will remain the same as under the current plan – Friday, May 15, 2020 at 5:00 PM. Filing will be done electronically at vtdemocrats.org.
  1. Similarly, the deadline for Presidential campaigns to disapprove any filled delegate candidates will remain the same – Friday, May 22, 2020.
  1. The filing deadline for candidates for DNC Committeewoman and Committeeman will also be Friday, May 15, 2020 at 5:00 PM. 
  1. The Party will prepare secure online ballots of District-Level Delegate candidates pledged to Biden and Sanders, which will be emailed to all registered state convention delegates no later than 5:00 PM, Monday, May 25, 2020. Registered Sanders delegates will receive the Sanders ballot, while registered Biden delegates will receive the Biden ballot.  
  1. The Party will also prepare secure online ballots of candidates for DNC Committeewoman and Committeeman , which will be emailed to all registered State Convention delegates at the same time. 
  1. Balloting for the District-Level delegate National Convention and DNC committeeman and committeewoman  positions will be open from the time ballots are sent out until 1:00 PM on Saturday, May 30, 2020.
  1. The delegation meeting to select the PLEO (Party Leader / Elected Official) and At-Large delegates, alternates, and the delegation chair will be held on Saturday, June 13, 2020 using remote meeting technology.
Source: MONTPELIER, VT -- April 4 2020. Vermont Democratic Party