Both parties looking for delegates to attend national conventions this year

ROANOKE, Va. – If you want to play a role in politics, both Republican and Democratic parties in Virginia are encouraging voters to be delegates to attend the national conventions.

For anyone who doesn’t know, a delegate attends the Democratic or Republican National Conventions. They also officially vote to decide the presidential nominees of the United States. Delegates can be anyone as long as they are affiliated with the Democratic or Republican political party, including governors, congressmen or even you.

The process starts on Super Tuesday, March 5, when voters head to the polls for the Presidential Primaries. The primaries determine how many delegates each presidential candidate receives.

There are also local caucuses where voters in each locality in Virginia elect state-level delegates to the congressional district.

“At those congressional district conventions, each congressional district has been allocated a specific number of national delegates, so those state delegates will then vote on who those national delegates are. And then all 11 congressional districts, conventions come together in June to elect the at large national delegates to the national convention,” said Executive Director Shyam Raman with the Democratic Party of Virginia.

Raman also said it’s a rewarding experience. He said he attended the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

“I have this amazing picture somewhere of being 15 feet away from, at that time, Vice President Biden, who was delivering his speech. It was an incredible experience. You’re surrounded by the most passionate the most passionate activists, the most passionate Democrats who are there to make sure that their voice was heard for who they want it to be our presidential nominee,” said Raman.

Filing forms for delegates will be released after Super Tuesday.

The Democratic National Convention will take place in Chicago this year. Meanwhile, the Republican National Convention will take place in Milwaukee.

About the Author:

Keshia Lynn is a Multimedia Journalist for WSLS. She was born and raised in Maryland and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Law and Society from American University and a Master’s degree in Mass Communication from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism.