BECOME A DELEGATE TO THE NATIONAL CONVENTION

 

Hello Democrats!For those of you who I have yet to have the pleasure of meeting, I am Mike Bonacolta the State Committeeman for the Democratic Party of Lee County. I have been selected to serve as the Congressional District(CD) 19 Chair. I along with our State Committeewoman, Cathy Michiels, who will be serving as CD 19 Vice Chair, will be running our delegate selection process for CD 19. Right now, we are entering a very exciting time, on MARCH 15th, Florida will hold its Presidential Preference Primary at that time we as a party will vote to help decide how Florida’s 246 delegates will be distributed to our two amazing candidates for President.So first here is some background information on how our delegate process works, Florida has 246 delegates to the National Convention. Of the 246, 140 are what is known as ‘District Level Delegates’, 60 will be designated as pledged and unpledged PLEO delegates, 46 designated as ‘at-large’ delegates.

 

 

PLEO delegates are what is known as Party Leader, and Elected Official delegates this number is determined based upon elected democratic officials in the state, as well as some party leaders. Even former speakers, senate leaders, President and Vice-Presidents, if they live in the State of Florida now, they are considered a PLEO delegates for the state of Florida. Some of these PLEO delegates are set, known as super delegates, others are selected and voted on by the District-Level Delegates at the state conference in late May. This process is done to ensure that more people outside the ‘party elite’ get the chance to participate in the National Convention. You need to be an Elected Official or a Party Leader to apply for this position.

 

 

District Level Delegates, these are the delegates that are divided up between Florida’s 27 Congressional Districts (CD’s) based upon Democratic strength within that district. Our CD, has been allocated 4 delegates to the National Convention this year, 2 women, and 2 men. Those 4 delegates will be pledged delegates to a Presidential candidate, so based upon how our CD votes on March 15th will determine how many of those 4 delegates will go to Hillary Clinton and how many will go to Bernie Sanders. To qualify for a delegate, a Presidential candidate must reach 15% of the vote. Any registered Democrat may run to be a District Level delegate for their CD. Because delegates are pledged to candidates based upon the result of the March 15th election, you MUST select on your application which candidate you would like to support as a delegate. Shortly after the March 15th election the State Party will let us know how many of our 4 delegates will be designated for Hillary Clinton and how many will designated for Bernie Sanders.

 

 

If you are interested in this position click the link below, fill out the ‘District-Level Delegate’ application form and send it in to the Florida Democratic Party by 5pm, April 7th. If you prefer, you may turn your application into the Democratic Party of Lee County Office, and we will forward the application to the FDP. Please remember this is time sensitive, if you give it to the Office, keep in mind time is needed to send it to the FDP. Giving it to the County Office DOES NOT count as it being filed, that action is NOT complete until the STATE PARTY receives the application.

 

http://files.www.floridadems.org/our-party/party-affairs/2016_Fillable_District_Level_Filing_Form_2016-01.pdf

 

Please complete the form and mail to:

Florida Democratic Party

ATTN: District Level Delegates

214 S. Bronough Street

Tallahassee, FL 32301

 

 

At-Large delegates are extra spots to help the party be able to diversify the delegation that we send to the National Convention, to help ensure that the cultural make up of our delegation represents the makeup of the state of Florida. These spots are used to make sure our delegation looks like Florida, whether it be labor delegates, LGBT delegates, minority delegates, these at-large spots are used to diversify and make Florida’s delegation one of the most diversified delegations at the National Convention. Anyone can run for one of these positions, and the spots will be voted on by the district level delegates at a state conference in late May.

 

 

If you are interested in running to be at-large delegate, or at-large alternate please click the link below and return to the FDP by NOON on May 9th. If you prefer, you may turn your application into the Democratic Party of Lee County Office, and we will forward the application to the FDP. Please remember this is time sensitive, if you give it to the Office, keep in mind time is needed to send it to the FDP. Giving it to the County Office DOES NOT count as it being filed, that action is NOT complete until the STATE PARTY receives the application.

 

http://files.www.floridadems.org/our-party/national-convention/2016_Fillable_PLEO_At-Large_Filing_Form_2016-02.pdf

 

Please complete the form and mail to:

Florida Democratic Party

ATTN: PLEO, At-Large, Alternate

214 S. Bronough Street

Tallahassee, FL 32301

 

 

Once we have all of our applicants in for District Level Delegates each Presidential Campaign will be given the list of names and be able to approve the names of the applicants, each campaign has the right to remove applicants from running for delegate position. The reason for this is because in the event of a ‘brokered’ convention, where neither candidate reaches the needed majority of pledged delegates, and the first round vote for our nominee results in neither candidate securing the nomination, all delegates then become ‘unpledged’ and may support whomever they chose in a second round. This is why candidates in a contested primary want to ensure they have loyal delegates elected to the National Convention.

 

 

After all of this, we will be given our list of candidates for the delegate positions to the National Convention for CD 19. They will all be placed on a ballot, and on May 7th Democrats across CD 19 may go to either of the two locations setup for voting. This is known as our Delegate Caucus day. The two locations that will be open for delegate voting on May 7th are listed below:

 

Democratic Party of Lee County

10051 McGregor Blvd, Suite 101

Fort Myers, FL 33919

 

Collier County DEC Office

600 Goodlette-Frank Road

Empire Plaza, Suite 110

Naples, FL 34102

 

So that is it the entire run down on our exciting voting process to help select the NEXT PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES!

 

Below please find important dates to remember:

 

March 15th – Election Day (Presidential Preference Primary)

April 7th (5pm EST) – Deadline to have ‘District-Level’ Delegate Application Submitted to the FDP

May 7th – CD Delegate Caucus Day – Vote at one of two locations to help select our Congressional District Delegates to the National Convention.

May 9th (Noon EST) – Deadline to have ‘at-large’ and ‘Alternative At-Large’ Delegate applications submitted to the FDP

May 21st – Orlando FL, State Conference, ALL delegates elected on May 7th MUST ATTEND this MANDATORY conference to finish the primary process and to select the at-large, and PLEO delegates.

 

 

Finally I would like to put out a call for VOLUNTEERS to help with the caucus voting on May 7th, if you are interested in volunteering please contact me as soon as possible by either replying now, or by emailing me at MIKEBONACOLTA@GMAIL.COM in the subject line please put ‘Caucus Volunteer’.

 

 

That is all I have for now, more information will come as it comes in. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me by phone,239-878-2509, or by email MikeBonacolta@GMAIL.COM. I will be happy to answer any questions related to this process.

 

For further information I have included several links below to help explain the process even more:

 

http://files.www.floridadems.org/our-party/party-affairs/Florida_2016_Delegate_Selection_v2.pdf

 

http://files.www.floridadems.org/our-party/party-affairs/How_to_run_for_district_level_delegate.pdf

 

http://www.floridadems.org/2016-florida-delegate-selection-plan

 

http://www.floridadems.org/our-party/national-convention

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239-939-2866

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