I keep hearing various alternative news sources saying that the DNC will already have selected their democratic candidate to run in the presidential election against a republican before California has it's primary election. That can only mean that California, then, has no voice in the selection of that candidate. Is this true and, if so, how can they get away with that?

  • California was Key to the initial nomination of Bill Clinton. It probably wont matter this year but stranger things have happened. Jan 5, 2016 at 15:45
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    Could you give us an example? I'm not asking because I don't believe you, but I'm asking because depending on context, there can be multiple meanings for "California's primary makes no difference". The most likely case is that by the time California votes, one candidate's lead will be too large to overcome, however, it's not unprecidented for a states' delegates to be stripped from them because they've decided to vote too early. It happened in 2008 with Michigan Mar 7, 2016 at 19:49

1 Answer 1


Comes down to when the California Democratic Primary is scheduled, Tuesday June 7 2016, and the number of delegates proffered by the primaries scheduled earlier. Before California's primary, just over 84% of the available delegates would have been won. From that, it is statistically possible that one candidate could have received a majority of all available delegates.

  • Well in that case, how does one go about getting the schedule changed to an earlier date? Seems ridiculous that California, the most populous state in the nation, should be written off as irrelevant. I mean is this always the case or is it just for the 2016 election that somehow CA is scheduled for the primaries so late? Either way seems a lot like an alternative form of gerrymandering is happening, here.
    – Sk Johnson
    Jan 2, 2016 at 6:36
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    On the other hand, this can mean that in the case where two candidates have an almost equal number of delegates, California decides for the whole country.
    – Philipp
    Jan 2, 2016 at 14:59
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    In the 2008 Democratic race between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama (when California was part of the "Super Tuesday" primaries in early Feb.) the later primaries became very important in deciding for the whole country. Also, delegates from later primaries are less likely to go to candidates who wind up not getting very far.
    – WBT
    Jan 2, 2016 at 15:27
  • Think of the money CA could save by just cancelling the "irrelevant" vote...
    – DJohnM
    Jan 2, 2016 at 22:16
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    @DJohnM Calling a vote irrelevant and canceling it is something one simply does not do in a democracy. Even when it's true. I doubt that the constitution of California would even allow this.
    – Philipp
    Jan 3, 2016 at 1:18

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