Meeting Procedures and Guidance for Candidates (Endorsed and Non-Endorsed)

The 45th District Democrats meet monthly to organize in support of Democratic causes and mobilize to elect Democratic candidates. Meetings are held for the purposes of conducting Party business and providing Democratic PCOs and activists residing and working in the 45th an opportunity to discuss achieving the Party’s goals. Meetings are ordinarily two hours in length. As meeting time is limited and valuable, and as meeting space is intended for the furtherance of Democratic campaigns and causes, the 45th District Democrats have adopted the following procedures regarding the use of meeting time and space.

Rule I – Requests for Speaking Time

  • Section 1. The Chair shall designate a portion of each general meeting to permit visiting candidates and elected officials to address the 45th District Democrats. Generally speaking, to be granted speaking time, a candidate must not be running in opposition to an endorsed or nominated candidate. Exceptions may be made by vote of the membership.
  • Section 2. Eligible candidates, elected officials, and guests who wish to address the 45th must request speaking time by signing up in advance of the meeting or by submitting a request to speak at the sign-in table immediately before or during a meeting. Guests who have made arrangements to speak in advance shall sign in at the time of their arrival. The Chair shall only recognize guest speakers who have signed in with the team handling check-in for the meeting.
  • Section 3. Guest speakers shall ordinarily be allotted two minutes to make a statement, which may be followed by Q&A. The Chair may allot additional time for a guest speaker to address the meeting at their discretion, and shall determine based on how many guests have signed up to speak whether members may ask questions of the speaker, and if so, how many.
  • Section 4.Persons who have been elected to represent the 45th District in the Washington State Legislature as Democrats are considered members of the organization, not guests or visitors, and may be recognized by the Chair to address the membership of the 45th without signing in. Such persons are asked to expect to confine their remarks to five to seven minutes.

Rule II – Distribution of campaign literature and display of campaign signage

  • Section 1. The 45th values every Democratic candidate’s right to fair consideration of our endorsement. Furthermore, the Endorsements Committee works very hard to provide timely and substantive recommendations to the membership. To preserve the spirit and appearance of neutrality at meetings of the general membership before a formal vote to endorse a candidate for that office, the following policies apply to all candidates and potential candidates for a particular office, prior to formal endorsement of a candidate by the membership.
  • Section 2. All campaigns may distribute literature at meetings until the membership has taken its first endorsement vote in the contest that campaign is participating in. Thereafter, only endorsed campaigns may distribute literature inside the meeting room. The 45th reserves the right to require campaigns to stop distributing literature if their activities become disruptive.
  • Section 3. Campaign signs, rally signs, and the like may only be hung from walls or otherwise displayed in the meeting room with the approval of the Chair. Only endorsed candidates shall be permitted to distribute yard signs for their campaigns.

Rule III – Solicitation of Volunteers and Financial Contributions

  • Section 1. Candidates who are eligible to speak as set forth in Rule I are free as part of their presentation to solicit volunteers and financial contributions, and to direct attention to sign-up sheets for such purposes, to be made available after the meeting. However, only candidates and ballot measure coalitions that have been endorsed by the 45th for a forthcoming election may circulate sign-up sheets for volunteers, distribute remit envelopes, or collect funds while the meeting is in progress.

See also: Endorsement Procedures