Democratic Party change process for nomination of presidential candidate

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The 2020 nominating contest has been changed to increase participation and ensure transparency

18 November 2019 - 18:37A man walks by the US Capitol building in Washington, US, in this February 8 2018 file photo. Picture: REUTERS/LEAH MILLISThe Democratic Party will officially nominate a 2020 presidential candidate at its convention next July, but not before a long primary season that begins with the Iowa caucuses in February and ends with the Puerto Rican primary in June.

Caucuses require voters to attend a meeting for several hours and vote in the open by raising their hand or gathering with fellow supporters. The process has been criticised as undemocratic because it can dampen participation and is subject to intimidation. But California has moved its 2020 primary from early June to Super Tuesday on March 3. With Texas already on the Super Tuesday calendar, the switch means the nation’s two most populous states — both with large Hispanic populations — will vote on the same day.

As a result, campaigns with deeper resources have begun organising operations in California much sooner than normal.In past elections, success in Iowa and New Hampshire was a good predictor of success in the primary. Conversely, a poor showing in those states forced candidates to bow out of the campaign. But maybe not in 2020.

The large pool of candidates could also mean the primary stays competitive into the early summer, potentially forcing a contested convention.Superdelegates are elected Democratic officeholders who are part of each state’s delegation but are not committed to vote based on the outcome of the state’s nominating contest. All Democratic members of Congress and state governors are superdelegates.


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