April 4 will be an important day for Victory Fund candidates.
In Anchorage, Alaska, voters will head to the polls and have the opportunity to vote for one of our two spotlight candidates: Christopher Constant, running for District 1, and Felix Rivera, running for District 4. If elected, they would become the only out LGBTQ elected officials in all of Alaska – and it is looking good! As of early March, Felix and Chris had individually raised more than any other candidates in the race.
We also have four candidates up for election in Illinois: Jose Ramirez, Nick Kachiroubas, Jeanine Reardon, and Margaret Paul. All are unopposed.
On April 4 we will also see important developments in the Minneapolis city council race – as three of our candidates running in different wards will seek the endorsement of the Democratic Farmer-Laborer (DFL) party. Candidates Andrea Jenkins and Phillipe Cunningham would become the first openly transgender people of color ever elected to the city council of a major U.S. city. Candidate Jillia Pessenda is also running as an openly LGBTQ woman.
Because Minneapolis has instant run-off voting, the April 4 party nomination process can be tricky to understand. Here’s how it works:
The DFL holds precinct caucuses and ward conventions instead of primaries. These caucuses are the first step Minnesota political parties use to endorse candidates for public office. On the day of the caucus, voters go to designated locations in their ward to listen to representatives speak about why their candidate should receive the endorsement. After the speeches, voters will choose which delegates to represent them in the DFL ward convention held in late April.
At the DFL ward convention, delegates will hear from candidates and then vote to decide which candidate receives the endorsement. The first candidate to reach 60 percent of the convention votes receives the party’s endorsement. If no candidate reaches 60 percent, the DFL does not endorse.
The DFL endorsement is important in Minneapolis because it provides access to institutional party support and resources such as voter files and paid staff. Ultimately, voters will decide who will represent them on the city council on November 7.