Let’s Begin By Explaining What A Precinct Is.
Arizona is divided into 30 Legislative Districts, for the purpose of representation in the Arizona Legislature. Each district is further divided into Voting Precincts, or simply precincts. Legislative District 17, which includes most of Chandler, parts of Gilbert, and the entirety of Sun Lakes, is divided into 40 precincts. While Legislative Districts are distinguished by a number, precincts have names such as Emmett, San Marcos, Velero, and Compadre. Your precinct name can be found on your voter registration card or on the Maricopa County Recorder’s website.
Precincts are typically neighborhoods encompassing one or two square miles that have several thousand voters. The boundaries of a precinct, determined every 10 years during redistricting, are based largely on the census results. Click here to see an interactive map all of the precincts in Legislative District 17.
What Is A Precinct Committeeperson?
Within each precinct, recognized political parties can have a set number of unpaid volunteer representatives who are responsible for organizing, recruiting, informing, and activating voters from their party. These representatives are called Precinct Committeepersons, or PCs. In other states, this role goes by the name precinct captain, precinct chairman, or precinct delegate. PCs serve as the connection between the Party, the voters, and the elected officials.
“IN ONE OF THE STATES THAT DETERMINED THE OUTCOME” OF THE 2016 PRESIDENTIAL RACE, “THE WINNING MARGIN AVERAGED OUT TO JUST TWO VOTES PER PRECINCT – TWO VOTES. AND WE’VE ALL BEEN LIVING WITH THE CONSEQUENCES.“MICHELLE OBAMA, IN HER DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION SPEECH
PCs can either be recommended for appointment by the Legislative District Chair or elected during the Primary Election. If there are more candidates interested in being PCs than there are available openings in the precinct, their names will appear on the Primary Election ballot and they must convince voters in their precinct to vote for them. If a PC moves out of their precinct, they must be elected or appointed in their new precinct.
In order to be a Democratic PC in Legislative District 17, you must be a registered Democrat, be comfortable talking to your neighbors, and be willing to do the work. As a PC, you will be given the tools necessary to effectively reach your neighbors. The following are some of the expectations of our PCs:
- Learn Your Precinct. Organize with other PCs in your precinct to meet your Democratic neighbors, learn about the issues that affect them, and make sure their needs are addressed.
- Support the Democratic Party. Educate voters in your precinct about the Democratic Party, its nominees, and Democratic issues.
- Educate Voters. Inform voters in your precinct about where and how to vote during election season.
- Recruit New Talent. Find and maintain communication with volunteers and potential PCs in your precinct.
- Stay Informed. Learn about current events and Democratic nominees by attending monthly meetings. See our calendar for details.
- Learn the Tools. Learn to use the tools and technology provided by the Maricopa County Democratic Party to reach the voters in your precinct.
- Donate. Help keep the party strong by providing financial support at the district, county, and state level.
- Shape AZ Politics. Elected PCs can serve on the executive board of their Legislative District, vote at Maricopa County Democratic Party conventions, and represent the district at Arizona Democratic Party meetings.
How to Become a Precinct Committeeperson.
President Harry S. Truman once said that being a Precinct Committeeman was the most important job he ever held. Given the role of a PC in our democratic process, it’s easy to see why. The effectiveness of PCs directly affects the outcome of elections. If you’d like to volunteer to be part of our Democratic PC community, fill out the interest form below and we will help you through the process or answer any questions you may have. The contact information you provide here will only be used to respond to your comment or question.