Despite its dominance of state-wide politics, the California Democratic Party is not immune to the in-house tensions displayed nationally between its progressive and moderate wings, particularly in the wake of its epic defeat in the 2016 presidential campaign.
Fractures in California’s Democratic Party (CDP) leadership were on full display last week when the Kimberly Ellis campaign (Ellis ran for Chair of the state’s Democratic Party) filed a formal challenge to the election results in the Party Chair’s race after she was closely defeated just days earlier.
Ellis, who represents the Bernie Sanders wing of the CDP, was barely defeated by the newly elected Chairman, Eric Bauman. Although Ellis and her supporters were already in the process of going through the ballots cast during the election, the official challenge was required to align with Article XII, Section 4 of the Bylaws and Rules of the CDP.
However, Ellis’ challenge was not the only indication of concern regarding the election outcomes. Challenges were also issued in races for vice chair, secretary, and several regional director positions.
Hillary Crosy, past Controller of the CDP told reporters, “Our review process is ongoing. It’s critical that all formal processes outlined by the CDP’s Bylaws are followed at this time so that there can be no concern about raising issues in the manner prescribed by our Party.”
Ellis’ challenge is now under scrutiny by the CDP’s Compliance Review Commission, which will render a ruling later this month after it reviews all evidence and considers oral and written testimony related to the challenge.
Bauman beat Ellis by about 60 votes, but allegations have persisted among Ellis supporters that ballots were destroyed and ballot-boxes were stuffed.