2020 Presidential Nominating Process & How to Be a Delegate to the State and National Conventions

MARCH 30 UPDATE – Due to the State of Emergency called by Governor Northam, the Democratic Party of Virginia (DPVA) is implementing an online process for both participating in the April 18 caucus and running as a delegate/alternate for the District & State Conventions.

What Has Happened:

The DPVA has issued a statewide Call to Caucus.  You can read the Call HERE.

Below are instructions for Norfolk voters to participate in determing who the delegates/alternates are and instructions for those wanting to be a Biden or Saunders delegate to go to the District or State convention:

Please join us for our Norfolk Caucus.

Here is the information you need as we move forward with the business of the Norfolk City Democratic Committee (NCDC) under the COVID-19 pandemic. This process will culminate in the selection of our local delegates to the Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee this summer. This is open to registered voters in Norfolk who declare themselves a Democrat, will not oppose our eventual nominee, or participate in the nominating process of any other political party.


As detailed in our prior email, the Democratic Party of Virginia has mandated that all local caucuses will not be in-person. The Norfolk online caucus voting will take place beginning on Saturday, April 18th at noon and end at 7 PM on Monday April 20th. At this caucus, we will vote to select the delegates to the 2nd and 3rd Congressional District (CD) Conventions which will take place in May. There are 2 ways to participate in our caucus, file to become a delegate or file to participate in the election of the delegates. If you file to be a delegate, you automatically are a voting participant and do not need to file both forms.

Participate as a Caucus Voter

 If you wish to only participate in voting on the delegate selection in the caucus, sign up at this link. There is no fee for participation.


Participate as a Delegate to CD and State Conventions

If you wish to sign up as a delegate, the link follows below. The number of delegates is based on the election results from the March 3rd primary where only Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders qualified for delegates to the respective conventions. You will be asked to file as either a Biden or Sanders delegate from the congressional district in which you vote. Delegates and Alternates are asked for a $25 voluntary payment to defray the cost of this process.

         2nd Congressional District
Joe Biden – 11 Delegates and 3 Alternates
Bernie Sanders – 6 Delegates and 1 Alternate

3rd Congressional District
Joe Biden – 29 Delegates and 7 Alternates
Bernie Sanders – 12 Delegates and 3 Alternates


Please let us know if you have questions and concerns. The journey continues towards a resounding victory in November. Get active and JOIN US!!

Charlie Stanton
NCDC Chair

Virginia’s 2020 Nominating Process

Dec 19,  2019 > Deadline for a Presidential campaign to file to get on the March 3 Presidential Primary ballot.  State Party chairs certify that a candidate is qualified by Dec 24.

Mar 3, 2020 > Presidential Primary.  Candidates must have 15% of the total vote to qualify for delegates to the District, State, and National conventions.  (6.666666 candidates)

Apr 18, 2020 > Norfolk’s caucus at the Academy for Discovery at Lakewood.  Election of delegates to the District/State conventions.  Allocation of delegates based on March 3 Primary percentage.  Norfolk will have separate caucuses for the 2nd & 3rd Districts.  You will file out a filing form to be a delegate to the District and State Convention.

May 9 & 16 2020  > District conventions.

1) 2nd District Convention is May 16.  3rd District Convention is May 2.

2) Delegates to the National convention representing the District are elected.   (2nd District = 3 males and 2 females delegates and 3rd District = 3 males and 2 female delegates and 1 male alternate).  The number of delegates per candidate is based on March 3 Primary results.

3) Electors from the District are elected.

4) Members of State convention Rules, Resolutions, and are selected. All District delegates are also delegates to the State convention.

Jun 20, 2020 > State convention in Richmond.  1) Elect statewide 21 At-Large National delegates, 2 Alternates, and 13 Party Leaders (allocated based on March 3 Primary percentage). 2) Elect 2 statewide Electors.

Jul 13-16 2020 > Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee.  Virginia has 124 National Delegates and 8 Alternates.

What You Need to Do to Be a Delegate to the Democratic National Convention:

  1. Your candidate must have received at least 15% of the vote in the March 5 Primary.  This means you have to work really hard to turn-out your candidate’s supporters.
  2. You must file a form to be a delegate tot he District & State conventions.  See above.
  3. You must get elected at the local caucus to be a delegate to the District/State conventions.
  4. You must file a form to be a delegate from the District or State.  The filing deadline is Apr 17 or 24 or May 1 at 5 PM.
  5. You must get elected at the District or State conventions.

Here is a brochure on How to Participate.  Here are some FAQs.

ALERT:  If you are a delegate to the National Convention you pay your own way.  You pay your own transportation, your hotel room (well over $200 a night), meals, etc.  The convention usually starts on a Monday and adjourns on a Thursday night with the nomination of our candidate.  4 nights in a hotel.  You can stay elsewhere, but all of the Virginia delegation is housed in the same hotel and there are many delegation activities such as a complimentary breakfast each morning.  Virginia has a prime downtown hotel location which is within a block of the convention site. Housing is tight and some delegations are close to 40 miles away.  The convention is not open to the “public.”  If you bring your spouse/partner/significant other, they can apply (lottery or other method determined by the DPVA) for a credential to the night’s convention proceedings.  (You do not sit together.)

Find out more on the DPVA’s 2020 Delegate Selection web page.