The first day of the Democrats Abroad Global Convention got off to an exciting start ! It began early when the Credentials Committee met to hear a challenge made by the Hillary Clinton campaign about the allocation of global delegates.
Democrats Abroad allocated its 13 pledged delegates according to the outcome of the Global Presidential Primary, and since Senator Sanders won just under 70% of the vote, it was determined that he should be awarded 9 delegates, including all four global at-large delegates. The Clinton campaign, however, argues that there are two distinct classes of delegate--the regional at-large and the global at-large--and each class should be allocated proportionally; that would not change the regional allocations, but it would mean that three of the global delegates would go to the Senator, and one to the Secretary. The Credentials Committee will issue its ruling on Saturday morning prior to the start of the Global Convention.
At the same time as the challenge was being heard, the Platform Committee presented a report on the results of the open comment period, during which members around the world offered well over three thousand comments, criticisms, and questions on specific planks of the platform. Members present at this committee meeting also offered additional perspective, and throughout the rest of the weekend the committee will finalize the platform to be submitted for approval to the entire body on Sunday, so stay tuned for an update.
When the committees completed their work, the DPCA Business Meeting began. The executive officers of the organization gave their annual reports; especially noteworthy was the Treasurer's report on the fiscal health of the organization, which was sufficient enough for the Treasurer to award three travel stipends to members who might not have otherwise been able to travel to Berlin. The health of the treasury depends entirely on the donations made by our generous members.
The day was punctuated by several coffee breaks sponsored by DA-Germany, who also provided souvenir VotefromAbroad mugs. Coffee breaks and the lunch hour were the occasion for the delegate-candidates to mix-and-mingle with the electors in anticipation of the delegate elections that will take place on Friday and Saturday.
When the meeting concluded, the membership gathered in the beautiful atrium of the Willy-Brandt-Haus to hear three guest speakers, including Former Ambassador the Honorable John Kornblum, the current Deputy Chief of Mission in the American Embassy Kent Logsdon, and a member of the German Parliament, the Honorable Niels Annen, who serves as a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee in the Bundestag.
The real highlight of the day, though, was the Bernie Appreciation dinner sponsored by the BerlinForBernie group. And because everyone appreciates the Senator, everyone turned out to celebrate the incredible campaign he's run. A Hillary Appreciation Dinner will take place on Friday.
The Global meeting will continue on Friday with the three regional caucuses, which promise to be an interesting time. We'll update you tomorrow, so stay tuned for more news from #Berlin2016!