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Monday, April 23, 2012 - 5:01am

Parties Pick Convention Delegates

After party elections this weekend, 72 Georgians are headed to Charlotte this summer for the Democratic National Convention. They’re from each of the state’s congressional districts.

“Some of [the delegates] we know because they’ve volunteered for us in the past and they’re very active, politically,” said Eric Gray, communications director for the Democratic Party of Georgia. “Other people are brand new college students who found out about the process and want to get interested into it and get involved.”

Georgia’s remaining 52 delegates to the Democratic National Convention will be party leaders, elected officials, and others selected by the state party committee. All of them are pledged to vote for the incumbent Democrat, President Barack Obama.

The Georgia Republican Party had similar elections a week ago, selecting three convention delegates from each of the state’s congressional districts. The GOP includes the newly created 14th district added in this year’s redistricting process while the Democrats use the existing 13 districts

“Each [congressional] district sort of has the freedom to run their delegation selection as they please, and so you know, they’re not bound to elected officials or to just party leadership,” said Chris Kelleher, spokesman for Georgia’s Republican Party.

The remaining Republican convention delegates will be elected at the party’s state convention in May.

Fifty-two of Georgia’s delegates are pledged to Newt Gingrich because he won the state’s presidential primary. Another 21 are pledged to Mitt Romney and three to Rick Santorum.

Delegates must cast ballots for those candidates through the first two presidential nomination ballots at the national convention.