Chapter Delegate Elections
Elections are already under way in chapters across the country to choose delegates for the National Convention! Elected delegates represent not just themselves, but thair chapter as a whole at the Convention. Chapters may hold delegate elections through June 18th but we suggest holding them earlier, since the early-bird deadline for registration closes on June 14th.
The number of delegates a chapter may elect is based on a delegate apportionment report that was issued to chapter leaders in early March. If you are a chapter leader and you did not receive your chapter’s official delegate count please email email@example.com for help.
Your chapter may also elect “Alternates” through your delegate election. In fact, we recommend it! An alternate is someone who can be bumped up into a delegate spot if it turns out that one or more of your chapter’s delegates can’t attend the Convention. The number of alternates your chapter elects is up to your local leadership and should be relative to the size of your chapter.
Due to space constraints at the Convention venue, we are asking chapters to only send the number of delegates apportioned to you by the National Office, meaning that if you elect alternates, they should only register and attend the Convention if they are replacing a delegate who cannot attend.
Reporting Chapter Election Results
Once your chapter elections are finished, you chapter leaders must do two things:
First, appoint a delegation chair who will be the main point of contact for the National Office in your chapter about all things related to the Convention. They will share updates about the Convention with your elected delegates and ensure that everyone registers within the registration window.
Next, the delegation chair must report the results of your delegate elections to the National Office by June 23rd so that we can develop a list of delegates and prepare your delegation’s voting credentials. We will need full contact information for each delegate. Remember! The earlier your chapter reports the results of the election, the more time your delegates will have to register using the discounted early-bird rate (closes June 14th).
At-Large members of DSA, that is members in an area that does not have a chapter, may also run for one of the 100 At-Large Delegate seats at the National Convention.
The National Office has just concluded the process of conducting the 2019 At-Large delegate election and we will announce the results shortly! If you were a candidate in the election, please watch your email for details (updated 6/4/2019).
Q: How do I run to be a delegate?
A: Delegate elections vary by chapter. For more information, contact your chapters Steering or Executive Committee for details.
Q: How many delegates should be chapter send to the convention?
A: The number of delegates each chapter can send to the National Convention is based on a delegate apportionement ratio set by the NPC. For the 2019 Convention, the ratio is 51-to-1 or 1 delegate for every 51 members of the chapter. The National Office shared a spreadsheet on delegate counts with chapter leaders for every chapter in early March. If you did not receive your chapters delegate count, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: I was elected by my chapter to serve as a delegate, how do I register?
A: After your delegation’s chair reports the results of your chapter’s delegate election, the National Office will email them the registration form. They will share this information with you.
Q: I was elected by my chapter to serve as a delegate but I can’t afford to attend, what should I do?
A: As a delegate you are representing your whole chapter at the Convention which means your chapter should be supporting your attendance costs. The National Office has been encouraging chapters to develop fundraising plans to support Convention delegates since January. Contact your delegation chair or the Steering Committee of your chapter to find out how much funding they plan to offer you. If they are unable to support your Convention costs or cannot provide you with enough funding you may apply for a National Solidarity scholarship here by the scholarship deadline on June 23rd.
Q: I was not elected to be a delegate, can I still attend the Convention?
A: Unfortunately, due to space constraints at the venue we have a limited number of spots for observers (i.e. attendees who are not delegates) at the Convention. Priority for observer spots is being given to volunteers who are supplying important labor to help us run the Convention. However, we will be livestreaming the Convention so that members can watch online and chapters can host watch parties.
Q: I’m a chapter leader or delegate chair and I need to report the results of my chapter’s elections, where do I do that?
A: Use this form to report the results of your chapter’s delegate elections.
Q: How many alternates should my chapter elect?
A: There is no limit on the number of alternates your chapter can elect, although it should be relative to the size of your local. For example, a chapter with 2 delegates might need to elect less alternates than a chapter with 25 delegates.
Q: I was elected as an alternate, do I attend the Convention?
A: Due to size constraints at the Convention, alternates may only attend and register for the Convention if an elected delegate is unable to attend.
Q: We have more delegates than candidates, what happens to our extra votes?
A: Delegates may hold and cast up to 3 votes for their chapter in the event that chapters cannot send their full delegation.