Precinct Delegate: Overview
What is a precinct?
A precinct is the smallest geopolitical unit in the country.
Each township and city is divided into precincts. In all municipalities with multiple precincts, the local clerk has a precinct map.
Michigan has over 4,800 precincts, each containing no more than 3,000 active registered voters.
The U.S. Census takes place every decade, and shifts in population may require political redistricting: sometimes precinct lines have to be redrawn.
Every precinct has at least one precinct delegate seat, and many have more. The number of delegates allotted to each precinct is determined every two years by the chair of each county political party, based on vote totals per precinct in the last general November election for President or Secretary of State, to ensure equal apportionment.
What is a precinct delegate?
Precinct delegates are liaisons between their community and the county party they represent.
All registered voters qualify to be precinct delegates.
Precinct delegates are elected in the August primary election, in even years. They serve a 2-year term, and there are no term limits. The county clerk is required to keep a record of all elected precinct delegates.
County political parties may vote at county conventions to elevate precinct delegates to fill vacant seats.
When precinct delegates move, they no longer represent the precinct they leave, but may be elected or elevated in their new precinct.
The official role of a precinct delegate is to attend, participate in and vote at four county conventions during the 2-year term. Precinct delegates may be elected to serve on a party committee or attend up to three state conventions and one national convention.
Elect county party leadership
Elect state delegates to attend state conventions
Elect state party leadership
Nominate party candidates for:
- Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State (statewide election years)
- Presidential Electors (presidential election years)
- Michigan Supreme Court – 2, Board of Education – 2, University Boards of WSU, UOM and MSU – 2 each (both statewide and presidential election years)
- Bring awareness to political issues and actions taken by party leadership and elected officials
- Promote party candidates
- Encourage political action (voting, lobbying, attending events, etc.)
- Inform party leadership of important voter issues and concerns
- Represent the precinct at party meetings and other political events