June 7th, 2016 Primary Elections

The San Francisco Democratic Party's endorsement has long been considered among the influential and sought-after in local politics. The process detailed below explains how the San Francisco Democratic County Central Committee considers and conducts votes on endorsements before elections. Endorsed candidates and endorsed positions on ballot measure are then listed on the San Francisco Democratic Party's Official Slate Card, which is mailed to Democratic voters citywide.


San Francisco Democratic Party's Official Slate Card 

Please find below the San Francisco Democratic Party's Official Slate Card for the June 7, 2016 California Primary Election.




Superior Court Judge, Seat 7 

The only contested candidate election for the June 7, 2016 California Primary Election for which the S.F. DCCC will make an endorsement (unless it chooses to to make "no endorsement") is the race for San Francisco Superior Court Judge, Seat 7. Three candidates submitted questionnaires to be considered for the San Francisco Democratic Party's endorsement.


Election Endorsement Process 

Endorsements for Judicial Candidates

San Francisco’s ranked-choice voting system does not apply to elections for Judge of the S.F. Superior Court. Accordingly, the DCCC’s process in contested judicial races is geared to endorse a single candidate—or, alternatively, to make “no endorsement”—with no second or third choices. 

During the endorsement vote on candidates in contested judicial races, there will be a roll call vote in which each member is asked to name his or her choice. Each member will be able to choose a candidate, abstain, or vote for “no endorsement.” If one candidate or “no endorsement” wins a simple majority of the votes counted, then that candidate (or “no endorsement”) wins. An abstention lowers the total vote count, and thus the number of votes needed for a simple majority. If no candidate (or “no endorsement”) wins a simple majority of the members not abstaining, then the lowest vote-getter is eliminated from contention, and the process is repeated until one candidate (or “no endorsement”) gets a simple majority.

Endorsements for Single-Seat Offices in Ranked-Choice Elections

San Francisco’s ranked-choice voting system does apply to most other local offices, like Mayor and Supervisor. Accordingly, the DCCC’s endorsement process for these races allows for ranked choices in the committee’s endorsement recommendations to voters. 

During the endorsement vote on candidates for single-seat offices in ranked-choice elections, there will be a roll call vote in which each member is asked to name his or her first choice. Each member will be able to choose a candidate, abstain, or vote for “no endorsement.” If one candidate or “no endorsement” wins a simple majority of the votes counted, then that candidate (or “no endorsement”) wins. An abstention lowers the total vote count, and thus the number of votes needed for a simple majority. If no candidate (or “no endorsement”) wins a simple majority of the members not abstaining, then the lowest vote-getter is eliminated from contention, and the process is repeated until one candidate (or “no endorsement”) gets a simple majority. We will go through the same process for the second and third choice endorsements. If “no endorsement” wins the second place vote, then there will be no third choice vote. Or if the committee chooses, it can vote by simple majority to endorse only a first choice candidate.

Endorsements for Multiple-Seat Offices

During the endorsement vote on candidates for multiple-seat offices, there will be a roll call vote in which each member is asked to name his or her choices for the number of seats open. Here again, members may choose candidates, abstain, or vote for “no endorsement.” All votes are then tallied, and the top candidates (or “no endorsement”) for the number of seats open, who secure a simple majority of the votes counted wins. If fewer candidates than the number of open seats are able to surpass the majority threshold, then the lowest vote-getter is eliminated from contention, and the process is repeated until the top three candidates (or “no endorsement”) achieve a simple majority. Endorsements for multiple-seat offices are not ranked. 

Endorsements for Ballot Measures 

During the vote on measures, there will be a roll call vote in which each member will vote yes, no, “no endorsement,” or abstain. If yes, no, or “no endorsement” wins a simple majority, then that is the endorsement decision. Again, an abstention lowers the total vote count, and thus the number of votes needed for a simple majority.

Votes by Acclamation

Where no opposition exists to an endorsement decision or other formal action, the matter may be decided by “acclamation,” according to Roberts Rules of Order (which generally governs the conduct of DCCC meetings). In some cases, to expedite routine or uncontroversial decisions, the Chair may allow an item to be decided by acclamation while also allowing some members (whose numbers would not change the outcome) to request that the minutes reflect their individual dissenting votes or abstentions. In such cases, however, any member may request a roll call vote.

A Note on Personal Endorsements

A vote for a candidate or ballot measure by a DCCC member at the endorsement meeting is not a personal endorsement. Personal endorsements must be secured from members individually, and it is recommended that campaigns get such endorsements in writing.

 

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