Tuesday, March 20, 2012

How To Get Elected As A Delegate

This is a general article aimed at helping aspiring delegates get elected. Having been a state delegate multiple times, including this year, I know what it takes. I live in Utah which is totally in the can for Romney, yet I and several of my friends have been able to get elected as delegates despite our support of Ron Paul.

Here's how you do it.

Step 1: Call neighbors and friends in your precinct and ask them to attend their neighborhood caucus meetings and support you as a candidate for state delegate. If you are not willing to do this, then you will more than likely lose and the movement cannot afford to waste its precious, dedicated supporters on failed bids, so take some time to lay a little groundwork and make some calls. It's not difficult and it pays huge dividends.

Step 2: Craft a message. It's up to you whether you will be open in your support for Ron Paul or more principles-based, but make sure your message is tailored to your audience without sacrificing your integrity. Speak from the heart with passion. My speech focused on out of control spending creating a real problem for my children's generation. I also appealed to the very low approval rating of congress in saying I wanted to wipe the slate clean on incumbents. That was a very popular message.

Remember, state delegates don't vote for Presidential candidates, so if someone asks whom you support, you can answer confidently that the office of state delegate is concerned with electing state level officers such as governor, senator, attorney general, etc. and that you would prefer to focus on those races. However, state delegates do elect national delegates and that is important as it is the national delegates that will attend the party's national convention and choose a Republican candidate.

Step 3: Coordinate with other known liberty candidates in your precinct to make sure you have a strategy. You do not want to have too many liberty candidates running if the race will be tight against an establishment candidate. Think Aaron Burr/John Adams or Bob Dole/Ross Perot...you don't want to split the vote. If your elections require a majority and you don't get one on the first ballot, you should try to cooordinate with the other candidates nominated to see if the ones with the lower vote totals want to drop out and support your candidacy instead. This is politics at the grassroots level. Make some deals, play the game. The goal is not necessarily to get elected yourself, but to make sure liberty delegates dominate the caucuses, so be willing to throw your support behind a stronger candidate if you're lacking the votes.

Step 4: Get someone to nominate you that is a trusted member of the community. Even if you're allowed to nominate yourself, it is more effective to have someone get behind you and it looks less self-serving.
Step 5: If you're interested in voting in the national election for the party you need to be elected as a national delegate. Usually you don't need to be a state delegate to run for national delegate. However, the race for national delegate is usually a state-wide popularity contest so unless you have a lot of name recognition you might consider seeking out more well-known figures of the liberty movement in your state. You can connect with these people through your state's Campaign for Liberty office, Facebook groups relating to Ron Paul, Meetup groups, etc. Whatever it takes to find these people, coordination is the key to getting delegates.
I hope this information helps. Bear in mind that I've outlined here the process for Utah, but every state is a little bit different so check with your state's C4L coordinator or the state party offices to get your specific guidelines. Feel free to PM me if you have further questions.

For Liberty!