Convention Frequently Asked Questions

  • What do Delegates do at the 2020 Maine Democratic State Convention? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Elect delegates and alternates to the Democratic National Convention.
    • Elect representatives to the Democratic National Committee and our Presidential Electors.
    • Review the Charter that will govern the Maine Democratic Party for the next two years and consider proposed amendments.
    • Debate and adopt the Maine Democratic Party Platform -- this will shape and define the values and policies Maine Democrats stand for.
    • Elect your county’s Democratic State Committee (DSC) members for the next two years. The DSC serves as the governing board of the Maine Democratic Party (MDP). It elects the MDP’s leadership and votes on all of the organization’s business that is required to come before the committee.
    • Hear from candidates vying for the Democratic nomination for Senate and President (or their surrogates).
    • Attend workshops focused on variety of topics of interest to Mainers.
    • Attend exciting events such as the Convention Welcome Reception, receptions hosted by various candidates, the Host Committee reception on Friday evening, the Emerge Maine Breakfast (advance ticket required), and the Maine Democratic Party Rise and Organize Victory Party (ticket required).
    • Meet and share ideas with your fellow Democrats from across the state.
    • Meet and talk with Maine’s Democratic leaders, legislators and legislative candidates.
  • Should Alternates attend the Convention? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Yes! Many Alternates will be upgraded to Delegates before the convention, but even if you are not upgraded before the convention, it is extremely likely you will be upgraded to Delegate after check-in closes on Saturday morning.
  • What will be asked of me? Do I need to prepare anything? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • You’ll be asked to vote to adopt the Rules (Friday night), adopt the Platform (Saturday morning), and attend your County’s Caucus (Saturday afternoon).
    • If you’d like to serve on the DSC, petitions to run are due May 15. More information can be found here.
    • Delegates will also be asked to vote for delegates to the National Convention and Presidential Electors.
  • How long is the convention? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • We encourage attendees to be present at the convention Friday afternoon to Saturday Evening. Only people who are elected to the new Democratic State Committee and those elected as delegates to the National Convention need to attend on Sunday.
    • Friday, there will be activist workshops, the 2nd Congressional District (CD) candidates and the US Senate Candidates will speak and the Maine Democratic Party Rules will be adopted. There will also be several great parties to attend hosted by candidates and campaigns.
    • Saturday will be a full day that includes the Emerge Breakfast, voting for national delegates, several speakers, and the 2020 Rise and Organize Victory Party. Check the Convention Schedule page frequently for updates.
  • When do I need to be checked in each day? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Check-in is open Friday from Noon to 8:00 PM and Saturday (for those that did not check in on Friday) from 7:00 AM to 10:00 AM for Delegates.
    • You only need to check-in when you first arrive. When you check-in you will receive your convention credential, which will be your pass for the rest of the weekend.
    • You will need to have a credential (Delegate, Guest, Sponsor/Exhibitor, Media) to be allowed into the convention. You must be a delegate in order to access the convention floor and vote on party business.
    • Check-in for Delegates and Alternates will close permanently at 10 AM on Saturday morning. All Delegates and Alternates must be checked in by then. Guests may continue to check-in.
    • Shortly after 10 AM on Saturday any checked-in Alternates may be upgraded to Delegate.
    • Several days before the convention, Delegates and Alternates will receive an email with a code number that will speed up check-in. This number is not required to check-in, but will make the process run more smoothly.
  • Am I allowed to attend the Convention if I am not a Delegate? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Yes! As a guest you can attend workshops, listen to speakers, and meet and socialize with attendees. You can also purchase tickets to the Emerge Breakfast and the Rise and Organize Victory Party. However, guests will not be allowed on the Convention floor at certain times and you will not be allowed to participate in electing National Delegates, Democratic National Committee members, State Committee members, or adopting the Party Rules and Platform.
  • Where should I park? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • The Cross Insurance Center has a large parking lot with free parking for attendees. We don’t anticipate any difficulty finding parking.
  • Can I bring my own food into the Cross Insurance Center? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • No. The Cross Insurance Center prohibits outside food from being brought into the venue.
  • What are my options if I’m not interested in the box lunch? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • You can find local dining options here.
    • Bring your own lunch in a cooler in your vehicle. You will be able to come and go from the arena and the time to go to your vehicle.
  • Can I bring my own water into the Cross Insurance Center? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Yes, water bottles (with water in them) are allowed.
  • Where should I stay? Is there a discount available? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • You can find a list of area accommodations here. We are working with area hotels, but unfortunately, there is no discount available for Convention Delegates at this time.
  • To attend the workshops, do I need to be a Delegate or have a Delegate badge? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • No, the workshops are open to the public.
  • If I need ASL interpretation or accommodations related to a disability, who do I talk to? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Closed captioning will be provided for all speeches made on the floor of the convention. For other accommodations, please contact: (207) 387-7500 or convention@mainedems.org
  • What is the process to be elected a member of the Democratic State Committee? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • In order to become a member of the Democratic State Committee, you’ll need to submit a petition that has been signed by at least 10 delegates or alternates to the 2020 State Convention from your county and returned to the MDP by May 15th, 2020 at 5:00 PM.
    • Submit the original(s) to 320 Water St 3rd Floor, PO Box 5258, Augusta, Maine 04332.
  • What is the process to propose a change to the MDP Charter? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Those wishing to submit a change to the MDP Charter will need to submit their proposal along with a petition signed by at least 25 Delegates or Alternates to the State Convention. Petitions shall be submitted to the Democratic State Committee Headquarters by May 15, 2020 at 5:00 PM. 320 Water St 3rd Floor, PO Box 5258, Augusta, Maine 04332-5258.
    • Please submit original only, by certified mail with return receipt, or hand delivered with receipt given to the bearer [MDP Rules Section 630]
    • The 2020-2022 MDP Platform will be available on 3/1/2020
  • What is the process to propose an amendment to the MDP Platform? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • The Platform Committee with representatives from across the state has met repeatedly since last year to develop the proposed 2020 MDP Platform.
    • Those wishing to submit an amendment to the proposed 2020 MDP Platform will need to submit their amendment with a petition signed by at least 25 Delegates or Alternates to the State Convention. Petitions shall be submitted to the Democratic State Committee Headquarters by May 15, 2020 at 5:00 PM. 320 Water St 3rd Floor, PO Box 5258, Augusta, Maine 04332-5258.
    • Please submit original(s) only, by certified mail with return receipt, or hand delivered with receipt given to the bearer [MDP Rules Section 630].
    • The Platform Committee will meet on the first day of the Convention, May 29, to consider all proposed amendments to the MDP Platform.
  • How do I know who the delegates are in order to get my petition signatures? Show Answer Hide Answer
  • Will I be able to meet candidates running for offices? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Yes, that’s what’s great about the State Convention. For two days, you’ll have access to the candidates who want to be your next Senator, Congressperson, and State Legislators.
  • What happens at the County Caucuses on Saturday? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • The Delegates of each county gather at their County Caucus to elect members of the Democratic State Committee, the Democratic National Committee, and Presidential Electors. Other business specific to your County occurs if time allows.
  • What are the workshops covering this year? How do I sign up? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Workshops will cover a wide range of topics associated with progressive politics. As session descriptions are approved, we will post them here.
  • I want to run to be a delegate to the National Convention, how do I do that? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • There are three types of national delegates:
    • Congressional District delegates are elected based on the primary results in each of the 1st and 2nd districts.
    • Party Leader and Elected Official (PLEO) delegates are leaders in Maine's state, county, and municipal Democratic parties and Democratic elected officials, partisan and non-partisan. They are elected based on the statewide primary results.
    • At-Large delegates (and alternates) are elected based on the results in the statewide primary vote.
    • Democrats wanting to run for national delegate must file petitions (available Feb. 7 and due May 15) and can be found here.
    • The petitions must declare which presidential candidate the national delegate supports. That presidential candidate must be one that has received enough support to have national delegates to elect. Presidential candidates need to reach at least 15 percent of the primary vote in a congressional district or statewide in order to have national delegates pledged to them.
    • Candidates for district and at-large delegate spots will need to have 25 signatures from state convention delegates and alternates in order to be eligible. If you are running in a congressional district contest, those 25 signatures need to be from your own congressional district. If you are running for at-large delegate, the signatures can be from any state convention delegate or alternate in the state.
    • Candidates for PLEO need seven signatures from members of the Maine Democratic State Committee.
    • Candidates will be able to contact state convention delegates and alternates and will be able to campaign at the convention. After March 8th, a list of Delegates and Alternates will be available here.
  • My presidential candidate did not get delegates to the National Convention or has dropped out, what do I do? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • A state convention delegate who was elected as a supporter of a presidential candidate who will not have national delegates pledged to them can switch to a presidential candidate who does by filing a form with the MDP by May 15. That form will be available shortly after the March 8 municipal caucuses.
    • State convention delegates can switch under the follow circumstances:
      • If your presidential candidate did not win enough votes in the presidential primary to have national delegates.
      • If your presidential candidate has won national delegates, but drops out of the contest
      • If you were elected as a member of an uncommitted group.
  • I missed my caucus, but still want to attend the convention as a Delegate. How do I do that? Show Answer Hide Answer
    • Following the caucuses on March 8, Municipal Committees will hold meetings between March 9 and April 8 to fill any state delegate seats they did not fill at the caucuses. If your town has vacancies, this is one way to win a delegate seat
    • Between April 9 and May 15, County Committees will hold meetings to fill any state delegate seats that were not filled at caucuses or Municipal Committee meetings. All state delegate seats will become at-large, meaning any Democrat from any town in the county can run for them. After March 8th, county meetings will be available here.