Philadelphia is hosting the 2016 Democratic convention, and it’s a city that knows how to party. Want to be part of it? Convention delegates are in the thick of things – from voting on the party platform to nominating a presidential and vice-presidential candidate to well… partying for a week with a group of like-minded political folks from all across the county.
Truly, it’s a trip to political junkie heaven.
And you should at least try to get a ticket. Here’s how.
- Understand how delegates get elected and selected. Some get elected in the primary and some get selected by the state party. Learn how the process works here (PDF format).
- Complete a delegate qualifying form. Download it here (PDF format).
- The form can be confusing if you’re new to the process. Here’s an annotated form that highlights important fields and also those that people often overlook. Download the annotated form (in PDF).
- Get the form notarized (you can usually have that done for free at your bank or find a notary in your area by searching online) and make a copy for yourself.
- Send the form by certified mail with a return receipt requested. This costs about $7, but you want to know the party received it! The address isn’t on the form for some reason. Here it is:
Alabama Democratic Party
PO Box 950
Montgomery, AL 36101
- The deadline is 5pm November 6, 2015. That’s IN HOUSE at the state party, not postmarked. To be safe, send it no later than November 2 or deliver it in person.
Congratulations! You’re running as a delegate!
Note that there has been some confusion online in Facebook groups, etc. about the process. A lot of new people are involved this year and they’re learning about how things work. Let us answer a few frequently asked questions…..
- How many signatures do I need to get to be on the ballot? NONE! Only the presidential candidates have to collect signatures. That’s Alabama state law and all Democratic and Republican candidates have to collect signatures. Delegate candidates do not have to collect ANY signatures. You just need to correctly fill out the form and send it to the state party by the deadline.
- Do I have to pay my way to the convention? YES! Each state has an assigned delegate hotel so the whole Alabama delegation stays together. You can’t negotiate the price, but you can share rooms. You also need to pay your transportation to and from Philadelphia, but transportation to and from official events in Philadelphia is provided free to delegates. There are also a slew of parties and receptions with free food, booze, and entertainment.Note: campaign officials with the Alabama Bernie Sanders campaign reported today that the campaign will help pay expenses for Sanders delegates to Philadelphia. Don’t assume you can’t afford it!
- Why do I have to pay to get on the ballot? You don’t. The $50 qualifying fee is optional. If you can pay something; that’s great. It helps pay for party expenses in the state and for expenses incurred during the convention. But if you can’t afford it, that in no way affects your qualifying form.
Finally, this news for people interested in running as a Bernie Sanders delegate:
Singing River Promotions, LLC will be sending forms via Priority Mail on Monday (11/2). If you get your form to us, we will mail it for you free.
NOTE: you have to send in the original form with the notary stamp on it, whether you mail it yourself or send it via a third party.
Hey, you may not win a slot, but won’t it be cool to see your name on the ballot and show your support for your candidate?
Go for it, y’all.
Want more information about how to get involved with a campaign? Here’s how to contact the campaigns in Alabama.