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The Path to the Ballot and Your Role as a Voter


I’ve recently had conversations with several people unsure how a person gets on the primary ballot in Colorado.  Some processes manage this.  I want to share some basic information and how you can impact who is on the primary ballot. I felt this was important given the number of people who I've heard say they are changing their affiliation to vote against Lauren Boebert. If you absolutely must do that, please wait until we have determined who will be on our primary ballot. 4 candidates are vying for a spot on the Democratic primary ballot for CD4. We must get the BEST candidate or candidates on that ballot and we need Democrats to turn out. In Douglas County, we typically haven't had contested primaries. 2024 may be different.

 

In Colorado, the process is highly involved with the political party you are affiliated with. Both the Democratic and the Republican parties follow this process. I’ll only address county, state, and congressional races here. Candidates first file with the Secretary of State in the case of county and state races and the case of congressional races with the FEC.  There are essentially two paths to the ballot.  One can petition to get on the ballot as Senator Hickenlooper did in 2020, or a candidate can choose the assembly path.

 

We begin the election cycle with the precinct caucuses.  The caucus's purpose changed significantly with the change to a Presidential primary in 2020. Don’t forget to vote in the Presidential Primary on March 3, 2024 before 7 pm.  


CAUCUS – March 9th – Virtual. Time allocated 8:30 to 12 noon. (VIRTUAL)

You must be a registered Democrat 22 days before caucus to participate in the 2024 caucus. 

 

1. Elect Precinct Organizers and Precinct Organizer Assistants.  Each precinct is allocated 2 POs and 2 POAs.  POs and POAs work together to activate the voters in their precincts.  They also work with candidates to ensure that the voters in their precincts know who is on the ballot.  This keeps precincts up to date on information about our elections. POs and POAs also serve on our Central Committee, the governing body of the Douglas Co. Dems.

2.     Selection of Elections Judges.  The party submits a list of persons interested in working as election judges to the County Clerk.  Final selection and training for these positions are conducted by the County Clerk and Recorder’s office.

3. Selection of volunteer Poll Watchers.  Poll watchers are trained by the Secretary of State’s online training or the Colorado Democratic Party.  They are certified as watchers and are assigned times to “watch” the election process.  They may be at polling sites, or they may be in the counting room. Certification is required to be a "watcher".

4.  Selection of Delegates to the County Assembly.  Delegates have a specific role in determining who will be on our primary ballot. The Douglas County Democratic Party will select 2 delegates from every precinct in the county for a total 406 delegates.

County Assembly – March 27 Time allocated 6 pm – 9 pm (VIRTUAL)


1.      Delegates selected at the caucus will determine which candidates will be on the primary ballot.  Candidates must get 30% of the delegate vote to be chosen to advance to the primary ballot.

2. We will determine candidates for two county races on 2024 primary ballot in the upcoming County Assembly.  Those are County Commissioner District 1 and County Commissioner District 2.  Candidates will each have a 1st and 2nd nomination.  They then accept or decline the nomination.  The delegation will then vote in a secret ballot.  If the race is not contested, the assembly chair could request a vote of acclamation. Nominations can be taken from the floor

3.     We will select 121 delegates to attend the State Assembly and Convention on April 13th. (Virtual). These delegates will be declared for support for one of the three CU Regent at Large candidates. 

4.     The next order of business is to select the delegates to the multi-county assemblies.  In our case, that is JD23, CD4, and HD61.  We are allocated 121 delegates to JD23, 127 to CD4, and 2 to HD 61.  Those elected persons will then follow the same process for selecting the candidates for the primary ballot we did in Step 2. 

5.     HD 61 will be held on April 7th at noon. (Virtual)

6.     JD 23 will be held on April 6th at 2 pm. (Virtual)

7.     CD 4 will be held on April 11th at 6 pm. (Virtual)

8.     House Districts and Senate Districts wholly in Douglas County will follow the same

process immediately following the County Assembly process.

9.     The multicounty assemblies are expected last approximately an hour.

10.  We do not select alternate delegates so please be sure that you can attend these assemblies.

If you have any questions about this process please email us at chair@dougcodems.org.

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