GREENFIELD — The Democratic National Convention will take place Aug. 17 through Aug. 20, during which time delegates will cast their vote for their party’s presidential candidate for the upcoming election in November.
Greenfield resident David Kong will be among those delegates, chosen to cast a vote on behalf of California’s 20th Congressional District for Joe Biden. The district encompasses Monterey and San Benito counties, as well as portions of Santa Cruz and Santa Clara counties.
Kong is one of two Biden delegates, the other being an art teacher from Carmel.
Bernie Sanders will have three delegates from the region to reflect his having won the majority vote during the state’s March 3 primary election.
As an elected delegate, Kong is expected to vote for Biden, who announced Tuesday that his vice-presidential running mate is Kamala Harris.
Biden — who was vice president from 2009 to 2017 — will need at least 1,991 delegate votes to secure the Democratic presidential candidacy. Statewide, California is sending 225 Sanders delegates, 172 Biden delegates, 11 delegates for Elizabeth Warren and seven for Michael Bloomberg.
“I’m actually casting the vote,” Kong said about his role in selecting Biden as the national frontrunner for his party.
The convention would have taken place in Milwaukee, Wis., but the Covid-19 pandemic has caused a shift to a virtual format. Kong received his delegate ballot Aug. 3 and completed it the next day.
“I had to cancel my ticket,” he said, referring to his preparation for the convention. “You have to do these things a year out. I already booked a hotel and had a plane ticket.”
Kong said he requested to be a Biden delegate before the March 3 primary as per deadlines, despite what he said was a prevailing assumption Sanders would secure the candidacy. He did so saying many of his friends were vying for the Sanders spots, and he didn’t want to compete with them after hearing of little interest for the Biden ones.
“Nobody was thinking about Biden,” Kong said.
Kong was also a delegate four years ago for Hillary Clinton, when she had three delegates sent from the region.
“Four years ago I was very lucky,” he said. “I did go to cast my vote for Hillary Clinton in Philadelphia.”
Kong said the process takes a commitment to politics, including meetings and working extra hours.
The reward when a convention isn’t virtual, he said, was getting to attend parties and meetings with national names in the party. He mentioned Harris along with Cory Booker and Amy Klobuchar as people he’s been able to be in the same room as.