This is a process in flux and we are constantly attempting to improve it and refine it. Stonewall Democratic Club is committed to an open, transparent, and thorough endorsement process. We invite comments to help us improve our process.
How it works:
- The Political Vice President, Endorsements Chair and Endorsements Vice-Chair (Endorsement Leadership Team) are tasked with administering the endorsement process.
- The process begins with researching and developing a list of elections and races in Los Angeles County that the Club may wish to take up for endorsement. This is typically done by the Endorsement Leadership Team with input from the Steering Committee and General Membership. Early endorsements (before the filing deadline) require that both the Political Vice President and Steering agree.
- Stonewall’s endorsement process includes 4 steps:
1. Candidates or campaigns complete the “Request for Endorsement'' on the Club website stonewalldems.org. The Endorsement Leadership Team may reach out to candidates in races that the Club has identified as important to consider.
2. Candidates complete and return the Endorsement Questionnaire which the Endorsement Leadership Team, in conjunction with Steering, has tailored to suit the race.
3. Candidates typically interview in person with a panel sub-set of the Endorsement Committee (a Candidate Forum is used in rare situations). The panel makes a recommendation to the next General Membership meeting.
▪ These interviews take 30 minutes per candidate
▪ Questions are prepared for each race with all the candidates within that race answering the same questions for comparison.
▪ Questions are also prepared for each candidate, drawn from the candidate’s questionnaire (“tell us more about that” or “you answered X, please explain your answer”)
4. Membership weighs in on the recommendation and ultimately determines the endorsement.
▪ Incumbents with strong voting records may not be asked to go through the process but may be advanced directly to the “Consent Calendar”
▪ There is a process to remove a race from the consent calendar so that membership may debate and vote on it separately
▪ A 60% vote of the voting members present is required for endorsement
▪ Members must wait 56 days after joining the Club to vote on an endorsement so that campaigns can’t stack the vote
- We have opened-up the Endorsement Committee and its panels to an application process so that general members have a stronger voice in the process
- Stonewall is committed to supporting LGBTQ and feminist candidates.
- Stonewall attempts to take up a wide variety of races within Los Angeles County: Judicial, School Board, City Council, etc. as well as the “big ticket” races.
- Endorsements that occur prior to the filing deadline in a respective race run the risk of excluding viable late filing candidates. However, in special circumstances, the club may have a vested interest in moving forward on the endorsements process in that race.
- Stonewall does not typically take up races outside of Los Angeles County except in support of candidates from the LGBTQ+ community or when there is a compelling reason to “flip” the seat blue in a race where the LGBTQ+ community is a vested stakeholder.