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The California Democrat Assembly District Election Meetings Are Coming

Wait… the what? We explain the ADEM Elections.

Bernie Sanders speaking at the 2019 California Democratic Party State Convention (Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

There’s another election coming, and it’s the ADEM election. Because you may be seeing information about this floating around, and you may well not know what this is, we wanted to provide a quick guide to ADEMs for you, the valued KNOCK reader.

(TL;DR: register here by January 11th to vote in the ADEMs)

Seriously, what are ADEMs?

ADEM stands for Assembly District Election Meetings. These meetings lead to the election of delegates who are themselves sometimes referred to colloquially as ADEMs. These delegates make up one-third of the state Democratic party. More specifically, in each assembly district, residents elect 14 members (seven of whom must be a “self-identified female”) to the party’s Central Committee state party. They then vote on who leads the party, party protocol and endorsements. It’s a bit arcane, but it does kind of matter.

For example, the state Democratic Party actually did not endorse Dianne Feinstein in her last re-election campaign, instead backing the relatively better Kevin De León. Although De León’s support mainly came from delegates appointed by legislators over whom he held power as the state senate leader, the assembly district delegates tipped the scales against Feinstein. This was a direct result of better people joining the ADEMS and pushing the party, kicking and screaming, into alignment with the politics of the people it largely represents.

Wait, but didn’t Feinstein win anyway?

Yeah… the payoff here is questionable. But this isn’t about being an ADEM. This is about voting in the ADEMs in your assembly district. In order to do that you have to register at this site by January 11th.

So I won’t get an ADEM ballot mailed to me if I’m registered to vote already?

No. You have to register here if you want to vote, you have to already be registered as a Democrat in your assembly district, and you have to register soon.

How do I know who to vote for in the ADEM election?

Good question! It’s hard! There are a lot of candidates out there (a list is available here), and relatively little by way of opportunities to vet them.

That said, there are a number of slates featuring candidates or staffers of candidates that KNOCK has recommended in other races. (We will be adding more slates before ballots go out to those who registered).

Those slates include:

AD 43: Forward 43 including KNOCK endorsed candidate Konstantine Anthony

AD 53: People’s Slate including KNOCK recommended candidate David Kim and a number of organizers with KTown4All

AD 58: Community Forward including KNOCK recommended candidate Alex Contreras

AD 64: The People’s Voice Slate including KNOCK endorsed candidate Fatima Iqbal-Zubair

These are not KNOCK recommendations per se, but they include candidates whose political approaches we recommended in the past.

Is that it?

For a potential voter, pretty much! Hopefully this guide has helped you understand a little bit about a particularly arcane political process in California. And one last time, register here to vote in the ADEMs.

KNOCK.LA is a journalistic project of Ground Game LA. None of the above slate listings were authorized by a candidate, a committee controlled by a candidate, or any outside entity.