This manual outlines two separate processes as ways to participate in the Kentucky Democratic Party:

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2 Dear Fellow Democrat, First, let me say Thank you for all the hard work you ve put into building your Kentucky Democratic Party. Few organizations across the country are blessed with the enthusiastic, hard-working and dedicated supporters who make up the KDP. As we prepare to reorganize our party, the Kentucky Democratic Party is poised to build on our past successes and lay the foundation for a strong, unified and winning 2016 and beyond. Whether you are a life-long activist or new to the political process, I hope you find the information in this brochure helpful to learn how to become more involved in the KDP. It outlines the convention process at the precinct, county, state and national levels and how the KDP will reorganize itself. This manual outlines two separate processes as ways to participate in the Kentucky Democratic Party: Reorganization track (Red) - building the precinct, county and state party organization. National track (Blue) - becoming a delegate to the Democratic National in July. If you have questions, please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions section in the back of the manual or contact the KDP. Thank you again for helping to build and strengthen the Kentucky Democratic Party. I look forward to continuing to work with you to make 2016 a winning year for Kentucky Democrats. Sincerely, Sannie Overly Chair, Kentucky Democratic Party Using This Manual Below is a key to the symbols in this book. = Precinct = County = State = National = County/Legislative Caucus Woman Man Youth Red = State Party Leadership Process - building the precinct, county and state party organization. Blue = National Delegate Process - becoming a delegate to the Democratic National in July. 1

3 Precinct April 2nd, 10:00 AM at your local polling place State Party Leadership Process Eight democrats showed up at their polling place for their precinct. The election was held, and the man, woman, and youth elected to the Precinct are highlighted. They will attend the County on April 16th. Precinct Every four years, the Kentucky Democratic Party rebuilds the party from the neighborhood to the state level. There are several levels of involvement within the Democratic Party: the Precinct, the County Executive, and the State Central Executive. Electing members to these committees is done through a series of conventions held across the Commonwealth. In this manual, you will see how you can participate in the Democratic Party according to how much time you can give. The Precinct is the backbone of the Democratic Party, and first level of involvement. The Precinct is elected at the Precinct. The Precinct s are made up of one man, one woman, and one youth (35 years or younger) to represent the Democrats in the precinct in a variety of ways that are detailed in the box to the right. We encourage all registered Democrats in the precinct to run, nominate, or vote in their precinct conventions. At the beginning of the Precinct, the Temporary Chairperson (appointed by the current County Chair) will preside over both the reading of the Opening Statement and the election of the Permanent Chair of the. Once the Permanent Chair is elected, the Precinct election takes place. After electing each member of the Precinct, the attendees choose a chair. The newly elected Precinct Chair then fills out the required paperwork, and he/she returns it to the Chair of the County Executive within 48 hours. Roles and Responsibilities of Precinct s The Precinct Leaders are responsible for: Recruit volunteers to help with the and campaigns Participate in the functions of the Executive Electing the Democratic County Executive at the County Electing Delegates to the State Keeping current records of Democrats in the precinct Distributing communications from the party Elect nominees for the ballot when there is a vacancy in county officials Perform duties as requested by the County Democratic Executive 2

4 State Party Leadership Process County April 16th, 10:00 AM, TBD by County Chair County Executive Delegates to State s Members of all Precinct s meet at the County to elect the County Executive and Delegates and Alternates to the Congressional District and State s. Delegates County Executive The County Executive is the next level of involvement in the Party. The County Executive is responsible for all Democratic functions in their county. The committee members hold fundraisers, have candidate rallies, work at booths at local festivals, and maintain other Democratic functions in their county. The County Executive is elected at the County on April 16th. The County is held 10:00 am at a location determined by the current County Chair. The Precinct members elected at the Precinct s meet to elect no less than 10 and no more than 20 Democrats (must be equally divided by gender and include one person 35 years old or younger) to serve on the County Democratic Executive. At the beginning of the County, the Temporary Chair (approved by the County Chair) reads the Opening Statement and presides over the election for the Permanent Chair. The Permanent Chair presides over the election of the Executive. A Chair and Vice Chair of the County Executive are also elected of the opposite sex. Delegates and Alternates to the Congressional District and State s are also elected at the County. These delegates attend the Congressional District and State s to elect members of the State Central Executive, the governing body of the Kentucky Democratic Party. Any registered Democrat may attend, participate in and be elected to the County Executive. Legislative District Based on their population size, Fayette and Jefferson counties will hold Legislative District s instead of a County. At these conventions, Precinct Leaders meet to elect one Chair and one Vice Chair of the LD. These LD Chairs and Vice Chairs then make up the County Executive. At a later date, the meets to elect 18 at-large members of the. These 18 at-large members are assigned proportionally to the registered Democrats in each LD. For more information, please contact your County Chair. 3

5 State Party Leadership Process Congressional District and State s June 4th, 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM, Kentucky Fair and Expo, Louisville, KY Congressional District State Central Executive Delegates from each congressional district meet to elect their members. Two men, two women, and one youth are chosen to serve on the State Central Executive. Leadership Roles in the Democratic Party Delegates State Central Executive The highest level of volunteer participation in the Democratic Party is the State Central Executive. It is the governing body of the Kentucky Democratic Party. Members of this committee have jurisdiction over all functions of the Party, including, but not limited to, management of campaigns, Kentucky Democratic Party By-Laws, and local Party Organizations. The delegates elected at the County or LD gather together with other County Delegates from their congressional district at the Congressional District to elect members to the State Central Executive. Each district sends two men, two women, and one youth to represent their Congressional District on the State Central Executive. These delegates then gather at the State to elect nine additional At-Large members to represent the entire state, as well as two members of the Democratic National. The Chair and Vice-Chair of the Party are ratified by the delegates. This committee holds its first meeting directly after the is closed. State Central Executive Governing Body of the Kentucky Democratic Party County Executive Your local Democratic Party organization Precinct s Your neighborhood Democratic Party representatives National Delegates Represent Kentucky in the Presidential Nomination Process and Creation of National Platform DNC Persons Represent Kentucky on the Democratic National Electoral College Delegate Represent Kentucky in the Presidential Electoral College 4

6 National Delegate Process Statement of Candidacy May 9th by 5:00 PM at Kentucky Democratic Party At the May Primary, Presidential Candidate A gets 45%, Presidential Candidate B gets 33%, Presidential Candidate C gets 19%, and uncommitted gets 9%. The Kentucky delegation is allocated proportionately to each Presidential candidate. Presidential Candidate A Presidential Candidate B Presidential Candidate C Statement of Candidacy The first step to join the Kentucky Democratic Delegation to the National is to fill out the Statement of Candidacy in which you pledge your support to the Presidential Candidate of your choice. Only those who file their Statement with the Kentucky Democratic Party by May 9th can run as a delegate. The statement must be sent by registered mail or hand delivered by the person seeking to run. At the State, the delegates are chosen by either their Congressional District Caucus, the State delegates, or by the State Central Executive. The Make-up of the Kentucky Delegation to the National District Level 37 delegates Elected at the Congressional District Caucus Unpledged Party Leaders 6 Appointed by the Democratic National Pledged Party Leaders 6 Elected by the State At-Large Delegates 12 Delegates, 5 Alternates Elected by the State Central Executive Total 61 Delegates 5

7 National Delegate Process County/Legislative District Caucus May 21st, 10:00 AM, Location TBD by County Chair Democrats from the entire county gather together to elect delegates to the Congressional District Caucus and State on June 4th. County/ Legislative Caucus County/Legislative District Caucus On May 21st, each county meets to elect delegates to the Congressional District Caucus and State. These delegates are allocated by the Democratic Registration and Democratic turnout in the two most recent Presidential Elections. At this meeting, any Democrat registered by April 16th is allowed to run, nominate, or vote for delegates. As Democrats enter the caucus, they will be asked to sign a statement of support for a Presidential candidate or for the uncommitted status. These statements are available at the Caucus. The Kentucky Democratic Party provides ballots with the names of individuals seeking to be a delegate, along with which Presidential candidate they pledged to support. At the Caucus, those present elect delegates to the Congressional Caucuses and the State according to the allocation by county or legislative district. Preserving the Diversity of the Democratic Party To continue the tradition of the Democratic Party s commitment to diversity, the Kentucky Democratic Party has established goals to achieve a representative delegation to the National. Through these goals, we hope to have a Delegation that represents the minority demographics of the Commonwealth. Our outreach plan will include African Americans, Hispanics, Asian Americans, people with disabilities, LGBT, and youth. The Kentucky Democratic Party will continue outreach and inclusion programs to promote underrepresented groups in all functions of the Party. 6

8 National Delegate Process Congressional District Caucus June 4th, 10:00 AM Kentucky Fair and Expo Center, Louisville, KY National Delegates from the county caucus meet with other County Caucus delegates from each congressional district to elect District Level Delegates based on the allocation below. Delegates Congressional District Caucus At the Congressional District Caucus, delegates who were elected at the County Caucus gather to elect the Congressional District delegates to the National. This year Kentucky has 37, all of whom are elected at the Congressional District Caucus. Each Congressional District s delegate allocation is based on Democratic Votes in the last Presidential Election and the most recent Gubernatorial Elections. The allocation breakdown looks like this: Electoral College Those chosen as Electors to the Electoral College for Kentucky will meet at the State Capitol in Frankfort at 11:45 AM on December 19th to cast their votes for President and Vice President of the United States. Kentucky will elect 2 at-large electors and 2 alternates and 1 Elector and 1 alternate from each Congressional District to make up the 8 Electoral votes that Kentucky has. CD Delegate Delegates also elect one elector and one alternate to participate in Kentucky s Electoral College. These people will meet in December to cast their votes for the President of the United States. 7

9 State Party Leadership Process National Delegate Process State June 4th, 2:00 PM Kentucky Fair and Expo Center, Louisville, KY State Central Executive Smith County Delegates from the County and County Caucus meet to elect the final members of the State Central Executive and Delegates to the National. National Same Time, Same Place State Delegates The delegates elected at the County Caucus gather at the State to vote for two At-Large Presidential Electors and two alternates to serve on the Electoral College, and the Pledged Party Leaders and Elected Officials. This happens while the State Central Executive is also being elected at the State. Credentials are assigned at registration to clarify which activities each attendee is participating in. After all the members of State Central Executive and the Delegates to the National are elected, the State adjourns. Once the is dismissed, the newly elected State Central Executive will meet to elect the at-large members of the Kentucky National Delegation. Those elected as National Delegates will also be given information about travel, scheduling, and other important details. Every four years the Kentucky Democratic Party gains new leadership and delegates are selected to represent Kentucky at the National. The final selection for members of the State Central Executive and the delegates to the National happens at the same time in the same place: the State. Both the State Central Executive and the National delegates are chosen in the same room at the State, but through separate election processes. Attendees at the State are assigned credentials to separate the two groups, thus making it clear in which election each person votes. 8

10 Frequently Asked Questions What if I show up to the Precinct and no one is there or the doors are locked? Do not leave. Most of the time, polling places will be closed on Saturday, so just stay there and wait to see if anyone else shows up. Many conventions will be held on the steps of buildings, or in the parking lots of schools, county court houses, or fire stations. If you don t have the official paper work from the Kentucky Democratic Party, simply contact your County Party Chair (information available online at or call the KDP Headquarters ( ) and we will make sure that you have the information you need to participate. What if I m elected only as a delegate at the County? Only those who are elected at the County s will vote for the State Central Executive, and only those elected at the County Caucus will vote for Delegates to the national. Each set of delegations will have different credentials to ensure that they are voting on their proper track. It is permissable to be elected a delegate to both. How do I become a Delegate to the National? Any registered Democrat in the Commonwealth of Kentucky can file to run as a delegate. Your first step is to file the Statement of Candidacy with the Kentucky Democratic Party by May 9th, and remember to pledge for a candidate. Without pledging, you will be unable to run. The next step is getting to know other Democrats in your area. Don t forget, this is a campaign. For more information, please see the Democratic National s website, Why are there County s and County Caucuses? s and Caucuses serve two different functions. s are held as part of the reorganization of the Party. The Precinct s (April 2nd), County s (April 16th), and Congressional/State s/caucuses (June 4th) all serve as ways to build our party from the grassroots up. The County Caucus selects the people who will elect the Kentucky Delegation to the National. While the purpose is similar, s and Caucuses serve a different role. Remember: s=party Reorganization, Caucuses=National Delegate Selection. Can I do both? Of course! In fact, many people are County Chairs, State Central Executive members, and have attended the National before. Many of the delegates will cross over, because of their involvement with the process. Run for as much as you can, or as little as you want. Who do I call if I have more questions? Your local County Democratic Party Chair is your first stop. For a contact list of current County Chairs, please visit the KDP website at If you still have questions, please contact KDP Headquarters in Frankfort at (502) If I m elected as a Delegate to the National, who pays? Any person who is elected to the National needs to understand that he or she will be responsible for their flight and hotel expenses. The Kentucky Democratic Party will be responsible for making arrangements for local transportation, hotel rooms, and other amenities, but those elected will be responsible for the payment of the flight, hotel room, and extracurricular activities. 9

11 Paid for by The Kentucky Democratic Party 190 Democrat Drive, Frankfort, KY (502)

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