As of 2017, California Democratic Party is the largest state Democratic Party in the United States. It holds an annual convention
where a platform is agreed upon, officer elections take place, and resolutions are put forward and voted on. At the 2017 convention,
one-third of the delegates were elected officials and their appointed delegates, one-third were county democratic party central
committee members, and one-third were publicly elected assembly delegates. The 2017 CDP convention was particularly significant
due to the party officer elections, most notably the election for chair. The two main candidates running were Kimberly Ellis
(former president of Emerge), and Eric Bauman (male vice-chair of the CDP). A third candidate also ran for chair, obtaining
7 votes. In total, 2,999 delegates voted. The CDP officially declared Eric Bauman the winner, obtaining 62 more votes than
Kimberly Ellis and reaching just over the required mark to avoid a runoff election. But Kimberly Ellis, along with her supporters
(half of the delegation), contested the election and called for an independent audit of the ballots and election materials.
As of this collection’s creation (June, 2017) Ellis has yet to concede, and Bauman has refused an independent audit. The Chair
Race Dispute is ongoing.
Also significant at the 2017 convention was the 2018 governor campaign kickoffs. The four democratic governor candidates (Delaine
Eastin, Gavin Newsom, John Chiang, and Antonio Villaraigosa) were present at the convention. Eastin, Newsom, and Chiang managed
campaign tables with informational volunteers and handouts (notably, Villaraigosa did not make any noticeable campaign efforts).
Eastin, Newsom, and Chiang were also regularly seen throughout the convention providing opportunities to talk with them. The
CDP convention in 2018 will vote on which of these four candidates will be endorsed by the California Democratic Party.
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