The Year Ahead

Happy New Year!  2016 will be a pivotal year for California and for our country.   As we look forward to the 2016 elections, our continued support as members of the San Luis Obispo Lincoln Club for local candidates is vital.

California’s primary election is scheduled for June 7th and the national elections will take place on November 8th.  The traditional paltry turnout means our vote matters more than ever in contests that can affect the quality of life in the place we spend the most time — our hometown. This year’s local elections carry broader significance than usual. California’s economy, government and population are changing.  People are leaving and the effects of the exodus will continue to require painful adjustments. Our state government is reluctantly recognizing a new reality, and local governments will soon follow.  Hard decisions await.  It is important that local elected officials understand and possess the ability to explain and innovate.  As Lincoln Club members we must ensure that our candidates are the best candidates for the job. The San Luis Obispo Lincoln Club Board of Directors meets on the 4th Wednesday of the month at RPSLO Headquarters at 75 Higuera Street, Suite 110, San Luis Obispo at 6:30pm.  Members are welcome to attend.  Our first meeting will be prioritizing and scheduling 2016 events, so if you have any suggestions either join us on January 27th or give me a call at (805) 994-7051 or email: Thank you again for the opportunity to serve the San Luis Obispo Lincoln Club in this capacity – 2016 is our year to shine!

Phyllis Stout, SLO Lincoln Club President


Key Election Year Dates

With debates over policy issues like immigration, personal issues like which candidate is “low energy,” and fundamental arguments about who is or isn’t qualified to be commander-in-chief, the nuts and bolts of how a candidate is chosen can get lost in all the noise. But here are the critical dates to guide you through this chaotic nominating contest.

Feb. 1: The Iowa caucuses

The Iowa caucuses are the first nominating contest in the nation. The momentum the winner receives that comes in the form of positive news stories, an infusion of cash from donors and sometimes additional endorsements is worth more than the handful of delegates needed to win the nomination.

Feb. 9: The New Hampshire primary

This is the first primary of the season (Iowa holds caucuses) and the culmination of hundreds of campaign events by candidates in the months prior. In the Republican field, more candidates are competing for a win in New Hampshire than in Iowa and the outcome could help to winnow the field.

March 1: Super Tuesday

It’s also called Super Tuesday because 11 states (12 for the GOP) hold their nominating contests that day. It’s also called the SEC primary because seven of the 11 states are in the South. With so many states voting, the stakes are high. Even if a winner isn’t clear after these states vote on the Republican side, the field is very likely to become smaller as candidates could start dropping out. The States voting here have to reward their delegates proportionally so theoretically every candidate can win some delegates.

March 15: Super Tuesday, Part 2

Only five states hold their contests on this day but it’s significant because of the number of delegates are at stake. Not only are the states large – Illinois, Ohio and Florida – and reward a lot of delegates but this is the first time in the primary that the winner is able to collect all the delegates from the state. States voting before March 15 have to reward  their delegates proportionally so that theoretically every candidate can win delegates in one state. However, only 16.2% of the delegates (400) will have been chosen from winner take all states.

June 7: California Primary

California’s primary proportionally allocates delegates and is not a winner take all state

July 18-21: The Republican National Convention in Cleveland

Conventions of late are just pomp and circumstance because a nominee is usually chosen during the primary process. But if no candidate is able to win a majority of delegates – 1237 of 2472 – then the delegates attending the convention will chose the nominee and vice presidential nominee.

July 25-28: The Democratic National Convention

November 8: Election Day

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