May 22, 2020 - Hawai'i Party Run Primary

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33 Delegates (24 Pledged)
:  Biden gets another very solid win. Sanders continues to gain handfuls of delegates.

HAWAI'I PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY (24 pledged delegates)

Ranked Choice Voting - Final Round  |  Ballot 

This contest was originally scheduled to conclude with on-site voting on April 4; due to the pandemic the state party cancelled the in-person voting and extended the date.  Most of the votes were cast in March.  Hawai'i Democrats were the fifth state party to use ranked choice voting in the 2020 primary season (the others were NV early voting, WY, AK and KS) (>).  The ranked choice tabulating was done by congressional district in ten rounds.  In the first round, home state U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard finished a distant fourth in both CDs.


Democratic Party of Hawai'i
Saturday, May 23, 2020
Media Contact: Jesse Broder Van Dyke

Biden gets 63.2% of ranked choice vote, Sanders 36.8%
Biden will receive ten Congressional District delegates, Sanders will receive five

Honolulu - Democratic Party of Hawai‘i Interim Chair Kate Stanley announced the results of the Party-run Presidential Primary, following the tabulation of all returned ballots today.

Statewide results from ranked choice voting
Joseph R. Biden:  21,215
Bernie Sanders:  12,337
Exhausted Ballots (other):  1,424
Voided ballots:  68

Out of the active final round ranked choice ballots, Biden received 63.2 percent of the votes, and Sanders received 36.8 percent.

A total of 79,150 ballots were mailed to enrolled registered party members, and 35,044 were returned by mail, for a turnout of 44.28 percent.

Biden will receive 5 delegates from Congressional District 1 and 5 delegates from CD2, for a total of 10 delegates. Sanders will receive 2 delegates from CD1 and 3 from CD2 for a total of 5. No other candidates reached the 15 percent threshold needed to receive delegates.

In addition to the 15 Congressional District delegates, the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i sends six At-Large and three PLEO delegates to the Democratic National Convention. Per DNC rule 11.C, Sanders is no longer eligible to be allocated At-Large or PLEO delegates. However, per an agreement between the Biden and Sanders campaigns, Sanders will be unofficially assigned his share of those delegates. Therefore, the effective allocation will be 16 total delegates for Biden and 8 total delegates for Sanders.

Ranked Choice Voting
The election was conducted using ranked choice voting. If a voter’s first choice candidate did not receive 15 percent within their congressional district, their second-choice candidate received their vote. And if their second-choice candidate also did not reach 15 percent, their third-choice candidate got their vote. If none of their three choices reached 15 percent, their ballot is considered “exhausted.” The round by round Congressional District voting totals are available in the attached memo.

Additional information
Today’s election had been scheduled for April 4, 2020, but the Party extended the deadline for mail ballots after COVID-19 forced the cancelation of walk-in voting. The deadline for ballots to be received in the mail was yesterday.

This is the first year Hawaii’s Party-run Presidential Primary was conducted by mail. In 2016, 33,713 Democrats participated in the in-person Presidential Preference Poll.

Please note that the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i’s Party-run Presidential Primary is separate from the State of Hawai‘i state-run primary and general elections, which will be held on August 8, 2020 and November 3, 2020. For more information on the state-run elections, please visit:



What is the PPP?
● The PPP is the Party-run Presidential Primary, formerly known as the “Presidential Preference Poll.”
● This election is administered by the Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi and IS DIFFERENT from the State-run Primary Election. (In the PPP, you vote for Democratic Presidential candidates. In the State-run Primary, you vote for local races like State House, State Senate, Mayor, Councilmembers, etc.)
● This year, for the first time, the PPP will be conducted exclusively via mail-in voting.
● In previous years, Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi members voted at locations in their communities, and had to be present to vote in person.

Who can vote in the PPP?
● Only Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi members who are registered to vote in Hawaiʻi, and whose voter registration information is up-to-date.
● Sign-up here: (click the Join tab)

Aren’t I already a member? I vote Democratic in every election.
● No, voting Democratic does not make you a member. The United States has secret ballots.
● Sign-up here: (click the Join tab)

I registered as a Democrat when I registered to vote right?
● No, you would have had to enroll with the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i using a separate form.
● The State Office of Elections does not ask for party affiliation when people register to vote.
● If you aren’t sure, please enroll or update your membership information here: (click the Join tab)

What address were the PPP ballots mailed to?
● The mailing address on-file with the State of Hawaii’s Office of Elections. We will not mail your ballot to another address.
● View or update your voter registration information here:

When does the ballot need to be returned?
● As soon as possible; the deadline is Friday, May 22, 2020.

Can completed ballots be dropped off at the Democratic Party of Hawaii’s HQ in Honolulu?
● No, our Headquarters are closed due to COVID-19, so all ballots MUST be returned by postal mail.

Who will receive a PPP ballot?
● You will receive a ballot if you are:
● A registered voter in the state of Hawai‘i (register on-line at AND
● Provided the state with correct, up-to-date name and address information on their voter registration record before April 4, 2020 (update your record online at AND
● Enrolled in the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i using that same correct, up-to-date information on-line at (click the Join tab) AND
● At least 18 years old by November 3, 2020

What is the deadline to meet the requirements to get a mail-in ballot?
● Saturday, April 4, 2020

If a person makes the deadline above when will they receive a ballot in the mail?
● On or about May 2, 2020

If a person missed the deadline to meet all the requirements is there another opportunity to vote?
● No

What if I have not received a ballot?
● Not receiving a ballot is most likely due to one or more of the following:
● You are not an enrolled member of the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i (DPH).
● You are not a registered voter in the State of Hawai‘i.
● You are enrolled with the DPH, but moved and have not yet updated your mailing address with the Office of Elections. Update your registration at
● When you enrolled in the DPH you did not use your legal name.
● You changed your name (wedding, divorce, transition, etc.) and did not update your voter registration or membership information.
● Your voter mailing address was not a qualified USPS delivery address.
● Your voter mailing address was marked confidential by the Office of Elections.
● You did get a ballot but threw it out by mistake.

Why did my friend/spouse get a ballot and I did not?
● They are registered to vote in the State of Hawaiʻi AND are enrolled members of the Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi.
● Members who were registered and enrolled by the first ballot deadline of Feb 18, 2020 had ballots arrive in their mailboxes starting on or around March 2, 2020.
● Members who were registered to vote and enrolled in the Party by the second ballot deadline of March 8, 2020 had ballots arrive in their mailboxes starting on or around March 20, 2020.

Why do candidates’ names appear on the ballot that have dropped out of the race?
● Ballots had to be finalized by February 14, 2020, and
● Candidates that dropped out had to request by February 14, 2020 to have their name removed from the ballot

When will the results be announced?
● Saturday, May 23, 2020

What is Ranked Choice Voting?
● Ranked Choice Voting allows for voters to vote for up to 3 candidates in their specific order of preference How does Ranked Choice Voting work?
● Voters are able to vote for up to 3 candidates, but are not required to use all 3 of their votes.
● If you vote for fewer than 3 candidates, that’s completely fine. It won’t invalidate your ballot.
● A candidate needs to receive 15% of the votes to be eligible for delegates.
● If a voter’s 1st choice candidate does receive 15% or greater, their ballot will be cast for their 1st choice
● If their 1st choice does not receive 15% in the first round then the accounting program will go to their 2nd choice
● If their 2nd choice candidate receives 15% or greater, their ballot is cast for their 2nd choice
● If their 2nd choice does not have 15% the accounting program goes to their 3rd choice
● If their 3rd choice candidate receives 15% or greater, their ballot is cast for their 3rd choice
● If their 3rd choice has not received 15% of the vote then their ballot is exhausted
● For more information about Ranked Choice Voting please visit

Do I use a pen or a pencil to fill out the ballot?
● Pen with blue or black ink

Will it void a ballot if I vote for less than 3 candidates?
● Absolutely not.
● A voter can vote for 1, 2, or 3 candidates

What happens if I voted for a candidate who has dropped out of the race?
● If your 1st choice vote was for a candidate who received 15% OR MORE of the vote in your congressional district, they will receive delegates proportionally regardless of their current status as a candidate.
● If your 1st choice vote was for a candidate who received LESS THAN 15% of the vote in your congressional district, your vote will go to your 2nd choice vote.

Lost ballot: I received my ballot, but I lost it. How do I request a replacement ballot?
● If you have lost or mismarked your ballot please call (888) 317-1906.

Mahalo for your patience as our minimal staff and volunteers are working overtime to send ballots to tens of thousands of members during these unprecedented times.