Friday, May 27, 2011

Georgia Democrats Assume a March 6 Presidential Primary in Delegate Selection Plan

The Georgia Democratic Party today released for public comment the draft of their 2012 delegate selection plan. The document is peppered with assumptions that the Georgia presidential primary will be on either March 6 or some time in February or March.1
Section I, Part B.2:
The "first determining step" of Georgia's delegate selection process will occur on March 6, 2012, the assumed date of a primary.
A summary table outlining the process later in the document (see page 34) multiple times refers to the likelihood of the Georgia secretary of state setting the date for some time during February or March. A February date for the primary obviously would be a violation of national party rules. Despite that, Georgia Democrats did not do in their delegate selection plan draft what Florida Democrats did in theirs. Namely, Georgia Democrats did not make the date of the delegate selection process conditional on where the primary will be set on the calendar. There is no explicit trigger mechanism put in place as in the Florida plan. There is a caucus/convention system in place for the selection of actual delegates (based on the results of the primary), but it is not automatically made the primary means of allocating delegates if Secretary Kemp selects a non-compliant date for the primary.

The district caucuses, according to the plan, are set to take place in Georgia on Saturday, April 21 and culminate with the state convention on May 26. The option, then, exists if Georgia Democrats have to use the caucuses given a non-compliant primary date.

Thanks to Tony Roza at The Green Papers for passing the news of the delegate selection plan along to FHQ.

1 On a table on page 34 the party incorrectly states that the Georgia secretary of state can set the date of the presidential primary for as early as December 1. Secretary Kemp has to select a date for the primary by that day, but the primary has to fall at least 60 days after that.

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