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California Dems converge on San Diego




California Attorney General Kamala Harris speaks at the California Democrats State Convention in Anaheim on May 16, 2015.
California Attorney General Kamala Harris speaks at the California Democrats State Convention in Anaheim on May 16, 2015.
AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes

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Today, on State of Affairs:

Usually, candidates go to the convention hoping to glean endorsements from delegates, but Raphael Sonenshein, the executive director of the Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs at CSU Los Angeles, says with so many candidates running, it could be difficult for them to measure success: 

With the 60 percent threshold to get an endorsement, I think this is more of an audition for all of the candidates and a straw poll. 

If you're getting in the 50s, for example, and there are not too many people close, you can declare a moral victory, even without the formal endorsement. But, really, you're testing out campaign themes with the core activist base that the party has relied on. There's a lot of new people there, a lot of new delegates who are coming for the first time. The party is wildly energized. So you've got an audience for your ideas and your ability to present them, so I think that may turn out to be more important than formal endorsements this time. 

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