DemDaily: The Delegate Math

February 6, 2024

4,685 locally elected representatives and public and Party leaders will serve as Delegates to the Democratic National Convention August 19-22, 2024 in Chicago, Illinois.

At the Convention they will vote to adopt the Party's official platform and the reports of the Rules and Credentials Committees -- and, most importantly, cast the votes to nominate President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris for reelection.

How it Works
The process starts a year before each presidential election, when the Democratic National Committee (DNC) allocates the overall number of delegates to every state based on its population and the average vote for the Democratic candidates in the three most recent presidential elections.

Each state then develops its own delegate selection plan, including affirmative action and diversity goals, which is submitted for approval by the DNC's Rules and ByLaws Committee.

The Delegate Math: There are two categories of delegates who participate in the Democratic National Convention: Pledged Delegates and Automatic Delegates

Pledged Delegates (3934)
Pledged delegates are elected during primaries, caucuses, or party conventions based on their presidential candidate preference.

They are allocated based on the proportion of the vote a candidate wins in a state primary or caucus. Candidates must win at least 15% of the state's vote to be awarded pledged delegates. Pledged delegates fall into three categories:

District Level (2557): These delegates are elected at the congressional district level based on the results of their state's primary or caucus in their respective district.

At-Large (889): Elected at the state level, At-Large delegates are allocated based on the statewide proportion of the vote a presidential candidate receives in a primary or caucus.

PLEO (488): Pledged Party Leaders & Elected Officials include mayors, statewide elected officials and state legislative leaders, as well as county and local representatives. They are allocated to presidential candidates based on the statewide vote. Alternate Delegates are also elected at the District and PLEO/At-Large levels.

Democrats Abroad are awarded 13 pledged and four automatic delegates.

This Wednesday! DMO's free Webinar on Running For DNC Delegate, February 7 @4:00pm ET. The Democratic Municipal Officials (DMO) represent the interests of 40,000 mayors, city council members and local elected leaders nationwide. Register Here!

Automatic Delegates (738)
Automatic or unpledged delegates are elected based on their public or Party office. They represent institutional members of the Party, and support the presidential candidate of their choosing.

They do not, however, have a vote on the first ballot in the nominating process unless the presumptive nominee accumulates more than 50% of the pledged delegates prior to the convention -- as is expected to be the case with President Biden.

This includes DNC Members (452): Elected at the local level as Committeemen and Committeewomen for four-year terms. They represent their local and state Democratic Party members and vote on national Party business, policy and the platform. Membership is equally divided between men and women.

Among the DNC members are At-Large members (75), nominated by the Chair and approved by the full DNC. They comprise local Party leaders, officeholders, prominent supporters, and labor and constituency representatives, as well as affiliated organizations.

Automatic delegates also include Democratic members members of the US Senate and House (249), Governors (24), and distinguished Party Leaders (22) such as former Presidents and Vice Presidents. Automatic delegate numbers are subject to change.

To win the Democratic nomination, a presidential candidate needs to secure a majority of the pledged delegates on the first ballot.

The magic number is 1,968!

DemList will host, for the fourth presidential cycle, the Democratic Convention Calendar -- free to all to post and promote their events. Watch the Dailys for Convention updates and the launch of the Calendar!

DemDaily: The 2024 Presidential Primary Calendar. The Update! 2/5/24
DemDaily: Red State, Blue State 1/31/24
DemDaily: Convention 101 1/29/24
DemDaily: Your Guide to the Democratic National Committee 10/3/23
DemDaily: DNC Announces Convention Leadership 8/10/23

Happy Birthday to DNC Chair Jaime Harrison!

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Kimberly Scott

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