DPVA District Conventions -- nominees and resolutions

The convention delegate selection process for localities under the Democratic Party of Virginia (DPVA) wrapped up this past Saturday and Monday, and it's time for us to start focusing on the Congressional District (CD) conventions coming up next month. The CD conventions, which will be held on May 7th, 14th, or 21st, will select the district representatives to the Democratic National Committee convention this July in Philadelphia, where the actual Democratic Presidential nominee will be selected.

First off, it is not apparent to us whether or not all of the locality delegate slots won by either Clinton or Sanders in the March primary have been filled. Regardless, it has been confirmed to us, by multiple sources within the DPVA, that no amount of absentee or extra candidate representatives can alter the final delegate counts. The DPVA Party Plan specifies that all DNC delegates are proportionally allocated, and none of the tactics that have been employed by Sanders supporters in caucus states, or even by Cruz supporters in VA GOP processes will have any outcome on Virginia delegates.

As it stands today, Virginia's pledged delegates to the DNC will be 62 for Clinton, 33 for Sanders. This does not include the 13 (or 14) superdelegates, also called Party Leader Elected Officials (PLEOs). We have created a spreadsheet to track these delegates for Sanders, which will be split by male/female where possible. Please note that this sheet is not meant as an endorsement sheet, but is meant to identify individuals who have been involved with the Sanders grassroots. It is by no means inclusive of all Sanders supporters, but anyone can add a comment to the sheet to have their name added for consideration. Please note that all DNC delegates must prefile by submitting this form online.

We've had a few challenges. Local party leaders have been unwilling to release the names of local delegates to the district or state conventions, or of those who have filed to be DNC delegates. Most DPVA party leaders are more likely to give the information to local party members than random individuals identifying with the Sanders campaign, so this underscores the need for us to work within the party. Regardless, we should be able to come up with a good number ourselves.

We've also seen some shenanigans from local parties this past weekend with regard to the elected delegates, most notably with regards to delegate slates. In some areas, we've seen ballots with pre-selected 'approved' lists of party delegates, which leave grassroots activists on the back page, where they are less likely to be selected in caucus. To be fair, each locality has discretion to how they choose their delegates, so we should temper any claims of suppression against our ability to take over the party.

Again, the exact number of district DNC delegates is still unconfirmed, but we do know that a number of at-large seats will be available at the June 18th convention. We will have details after the CD conventions.

In addition to the DNC delegates, perhaps the most important aspect of the convention process will be the non-binding resolutions. This will be the place where the grassroots Sanders movement will have the best chance of an impact in party politics. We will need to draft short documents in support of specific policy platforms, so that they can be introduced at each of the district conventions. Since not all district conventions have resolutions committees, they can also be submitted to the state DPVA as well. Our hope is to get several resolutions supporting Progressive or Sanders campaign issues, and submit them as a group to each of the district committees. The more we can get passed through the district conventions to the state committee, the better chance we'll have of getting them passed.

A few of the issues that have been suggested are:

We need volunteers to help draft these documents. We've got a Right to Work (For Less) resolution that can be used as a template, so if you're interested drop me a line and we'll work with you to get these drafted. Time is running short, we've got about 2 weeks to get these turned in.

Comments

I will handle the fight for $15.

Tom Brock's picture

Happy Sunday, I am very iterested in working on a single payer helthcare resolution. I believe we can get some support for this across delegations. I need some input from others in the party as to the most effective path to take politicly with this as I'm sure many are weary from the PPACA battles of the last few years. 

I also think that there should be some discussion about A State Legislative Resolution to Restore Free and Fair Elections in the United States. There is already movement on it in Vermont, California, Illinois, and New Jersy. Here is a link to a copy of the Resolution.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/13fCQoiP__WQ1qpAhhpaItfjCqndeWPUoV9Oy...

Tom Brock's picture

Just changed the access for this document so everyone can comment wth the link. Please comment. This is the heart and soul of real progressive change. 

A State Legislative Resolution to Restore Free and Fair Elections in the United States

https://docs.google.com/document/d/13fCQoiP__WQ1qpAhhpaItfjCqndeWPUoV9Oy...

Dr. P-J's picture

Resolution for the Democratic Party to abandon “superdelegates” and use proportion assignment of delegates based on actual votes, by Congressional District.

Background

  1. Superdelegates are, by definition, anti-democratic. These delegates are given the power to usurp the vote of the people, and are vulnerable to corruption, manipulation, and quid pro quo arrangements.
  2. In the 2016 Presidential election, lobbyists have been awarded the role of superdelegate, wielding the same power as democratically pledged delegates who represent the will of thousands of voters.
  3. Because superdelegates are awarded their positions without the scrutiny of the electorate, lobbyists are among the chosen. The following individuals are unelected superdelegates who work in the lobbying industry:
  • Jeff Berman is a top lobbyist at Bryan Cave LLP, Berman previously worked as a lobbyist for the private prison company Geo Group and as a lobbyist helping TransCanada build support for the Keystone XL.
  • Bill Shaheen’s law firm is registered to lobby local officials. The most recently available lobbying records show that Shaheen’s firm is registered to lobby on behalf of the American Council of Life Insurers and PainCare Centers, among other clients. 
  • Joanne Dowdell is the senior vice president for global government affairs at News Corporation, the parent company of Fox News.
  • Superdelegates Jill Alper, Minyon Moore, and Maria Cardona are officials at Dewey Square Group which was retained by the health insurance industry to undermine health reform efforts in 2009, including proposals to change Medicare Advantage. The firm has previously worked to influence policy on behalf of Enron, Countrywide, Citigroup, Coca-Cola, the U.S. Telecom Association and News Corporation.
  • Jennifer Cunningham is the managing director of SKDKnickerbocker, a political consulting firm that provides a variety of services, including advertising and direct lobbying of public officials. In recent years, SKDKnickerbocker helped a coalition of corporate clients lobby the Obama administration on a tax cut for overseas earnings; lobbied for weakened rules governing for-profit colleges; and helped a food industry group undermine Michelle Obama’s nutrition guidelines for foods marketed to children. Recent records show that the firm is providing consulting work for Independence USA PAC, the Super PAC backed by billionaire Michael Bloomberg.
  • Tonio Burgos is a lobbyist registered to influence New York City officials. Burgos’ current client list includes Verizon, Pfizer, and American Airlines.
  • Emily Giske, a lobbyist in New York City, is registered to work on behalf of Airbnb, Yum Brands (the parent company of Taco Bell), Pfizer, and the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, a trade group for Wall Street firms such as Goldman Sachs, Fidelity, and Bank of America.

Source: https://theintercept.com/2016/02/17/voters-be-damned/

  1. If a candidate receives 15% or more of the Congressional Districts vote, delegates of that candidate should be welcomed to participate in the Congressional, State, and National Conventions, and should therefore be proportionally assigned delegate positions.
  2. Rather than concentrating power at the top, at the state convention, the people of a community are best served by delegates who come from their own communities. Determination of delegates representing a candidate to the Democratic National Convention should be determined at the Congressional District level.

Action

The 2012 Democratic Party of Virginia State Convention:

  1. Finds that superdelegates are inherently anti-democratic,
  2. Finds that it is at the local level that representation of the voters is the most direct and pertinent.
  3. Urges the Democratic National Committee to dismantle the super-delegate system of appointing delegates. Delegate positions for each candidate shall be awarded proportionally at the Congressional District level based on the primary vote, provided that the candidate receives at least 15% of the vote in the Congressional District.

I'd like to support this.  I've spoken with the Senate rep from District 9: the convention rules have not been formalized yet and it is unclear whether resolutions will be accepted from the floor or only within the Resolutions Committee.  I don't know if there are openings within the Resolution Committee but I will be looking into committees in general and what I can do there.  If possible, I'd love to bring this to the D9 Convention to try to garner support for the state convention. Let me know what I can do and I will post if I find out more. 

Under "Action" should it be 2016?

~Dorothy Legare

 

Tom Brock's picture

Resolution for the Democratic Party to Prioritize a Universal, Single Payer Health Care Plan on the Federal Level and For the Democratic Party of Virginia To Enact a Single Payer Health Care Plan on the State Level.

 

Whereas: The Affordable Care Act is a commendable first step toward health care reform but will leave 30 million Americans without health coverage;

 

Whereas: Hundreds of Thousands of Americans are still susceptible to financial ruin and bankruptcy due to medical costs even with health care insurance covered under the A.C.A.;

 

Whereas: Avoidable illness and suffering, as well as financial disaster caused by our current health care system will continue unless we continue reform;

 

Whereas: The lack of available health care is a barrier to opportunity, success and quality of life as well as dividing Americans between those who can afford to be health and those who cannot;

 

Whereas: The inclusion of health insurance in employer overhead makes American Workers non-competitive with virtually all foreign industry, where the cost of health care is not added directly to the cost of production of foreign goods;

 

Whereas: Private insurance markets are inefficient, inequitable, profit driven and wasteful as a means to provide universal access to health care;

 

Whereas: Comprehensive single payer health care for all Americans should be treated as a public good, provided equitably in a universal risk pool, comparable to public schools, public safety, and public utilities.

 

Whereas: A strong single payer heath care system has proven to be successful on a global scale with all other industrialized countries of the world, causing The American health care system to rank 37th in the world;

Comments are requested. I'm also having a bit of writers block on the "therfore we resolve.." part.

Michael Brandon Wade's picture

Kim, maybe focus on medicaid expansion that the gov'nor has been fighting for? I would do some research on the way things went down in 2015 and this year with regards to the budget. IIRC, it came down to a split vote in the Senate, which was expected to go to the Lt. Gov'nor, but then a Dem Senator resigned to give his daughter a private-sector seat and so things went nowhere. 

You may also want to check the Sanders issues page and use some of that to brainstorm. It could just be a statement of intent, like 'no individual shoud go bankrupt for medical bills' or similar.

Tom Brock's picture

Therefore: Be it Resolved, the Democratic Party of Virginia;

1.Urges The Democratic National Committee and all other affiliated Democratic organizations to Create a universal, single payer, health care system guaranteeing health care to all people.

 

2.Recognizes health care as a fundamental right of citizenship in the United States of America.

 

3.Demands that the Legislature of the Commonwealth of Virginia Expand Medicaid as stated in the Affordable Care Act (need bill #) And addressed in the Legislature  of The Commonwealth of Virginia (need bill#)

 

Curious why we need to include Medicaid Expansion if single payer is what we are going for.  Seems like opening the door to too much compromise - ok, we'll give you Medicaid Expansion but you're stuck with your costly corporate insurance.  

Tom Brock's picture

Resolution for a Universal, Single Payer Health Care Plan for All Citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia

 

Whereas: The Affordable Care Act is a commendable first step toward health care reform but will leave 400,000 Virginians without health coverage;

 

Whereas: Hundreds of Thousands of Virginians are still susceptible to financial ruin and bankruptcy due to medical costs even with health care insurance covered under the A.C.A.;

 

Whereas: Avoidable illness and suffering, as well as financial disaster caused by our current health care system will continue unless we continue reform;

 

Whereas: The lack of available health care is a barrier to opportunity, success and quality of life as well as dividing Virginians between those who can afford to be healthy and those who cannot;

 

Whereas: The inclusion of health insurance in employer overhead makes all American workers non-competitive with virtually all foreign industry, where the cost of health care is not added directly to the cost of production of foreign goods;

 

Whereas: Private insurance markets are inefficient, inequitable, profit driven and wasteful as a means to provide universal access to health care;

 

Whereas: Comprehensive single payer health care for all Virginians should be treated as a public good, provided equitably in a universal risk pool, comparable to public schools, public safety, and public utilities:

 

Whereas: A strong single payer health care system has proven to be successful on a global scale with all other industrialized countries of the world, causing the American health care system to rank 37th in the world;

Therefore: Be it Resolved, the Democratic Party of Virginia;

Recognizes that legislation accomplishing the establishment of a single-payer healthcare system should be proposed, pursued, and passed into law by the General Assembly.

 

Hi, Tom!  Did this get completed?

 

Tom Brock's picture

This resolution is complete and has been submitted.

 

Is this something I can present at my district?

Hi, Dorothy!  Package is available here: https://forvirginia.org/content/resolutions-package

I'd say stay with the single payer vs Medicaid expansion. 

I'd also mention cost of insurance more specifically. Perhaps:

Whereas: Hundreds of Thousands of Americans are still susceptible to financial ruin and bankruptcy due to medical costs in spite of health care insurance covered under the A.C.A., and compounded by high premiums and prohibitive deductibles;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED the Democratic Party of Virginia:

-recognizes that healthcare is a right not a priviledge

-supports a single payer healthcare system for all 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that upon passage of this resolution by the District (your district #) Convention of the DPVA, it will be forwarded to the Democratic Party of Virginia for considertion and will also be sent to all members of Virginia's Congressional Delegation.

Tom Brock's picture

I have posted the finalized version of the resolution. I totally agree with you on removing the association with medicaid. That part of the resolution was removed almost immediatly. I think the final product is just what the doctor ordered. See what I did there... TeeHee

 

Michael Brandon Wade's picture

Via The Nation: Before ‘unity,’ Sanders must stay in the fight

 Sanders could force platform debates and move the party toward more progressive stances on tuition-free higher education, the minimum wage, corporate trade deals, money in politics and foreign policy. He also could call for new rules to make future primaries more transparent and democratic, such as reducing the role of unelected superdelegates.

Dsutt002's picture

I would like to work on the resolution to make college affordable.  According to the Congressional Progressive Caucus:

"Over the last 30 years, the cost of college has increased by 300 percent, forcing some students to take on overwhelming student loan debt and putting a college degree entirely out of reach for others. Student loan debt is now the highest form of personal debt in the nation, reaching over $1.3 trillion for 38 million student loan borrowers across the country. Students graduating from public universities leave with an average of $28,950 of debt."

I'd like to take a crack at anti-corruption resolutions.  Probably use a lot of wording from Represent.Us

Michael Brandon Wade's picture

Kim Cosby Johnson has been taking the reins on this, and we've moved work on this over to Slack and have a package out. We appreciate all of the work on this that everyone did and will have an update on the main page shortly.