How to Take Over Your Local Democratic Party Step by Step

By MrBrainStorm.

Do you want to change which people get elected to the Democratic National Committee (DNC)?

Read this for all of your answers!

Just kidding. Here’s the short version of how the DNC delegates are elected:

  • The State Executive Committee (SEC) drafts a Delegate Selection Plan that is used to pick delegates to the DNC. The only stipulation for this in the state party’s Plan Of Organization is that an even number of men and women are elected as Delegates (section 7.02).
  • SEC members are elected by the Executive Committees from each county.
  • The County Executive Committees are made up of a few elected officers and the elected precinct Chairs.
  • This means the more precincts that are chaired by progressives, the more voting power progressives have to change the party platform, put more progressives in leadership positions at the DNC and state level, and get corporate money out of the DNC.

TL;DR: Changing the Democratic Party starts at the precinct level!

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Burlington’s Political Revolution and Bernie Sanders’ Forgotten Run for Governor

Thesis by Catherine Alison Hill

ABSTRACT

This thesis is the story of Bernie Sanders, the socialist mayor of Burlington and his campaign for governor of Vermont in 1986. The campaign is used as a prism to explore his version of socialist politics and policies within a capitalist state. The policies which Sanders developed in this campaign for lowering property taxes for middle and lower income people, increasing social spending, increasing citizen participation, and raising the taxes for wealthy people and corporations are examined in detail. Sanders claims that city governments can work for poor and working class people; however, this thesis demonstrates the difficulties leftists have in getting elected and in implementing policies whenever they do win. In conclusion, I examine the questions about left participation in the electoral process, the autonomy of the state, and what socialist municipal and state policies should be.

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All of Our Revolution’s Down-Ballot 2016 Victories

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Our Revolution (OR) bounced back from a rocky start and survived the Trump wave on November 8 to help elect 56 down-ballot progressives and rack up 23 progressive victories in ballot initiatives all over the country. OR endorsed a total of 106 general election candidates and worked for/against 31 ballot initiatives, achieving a success rate of 53% and 74%, respectively, in OR’s first general election. Additionally, OR backed 9 candidates in primaries and 7 of them won. (The full list of OR’s 2016 wins and losses can be found at the bottom of this post.) Continue reading

Bernie Sanders on Capitalism, Radicalism, and How Progressives Win (1987)

The following is a December 1, 1987 interview with then-mayor Bernie Sanders by the Gadfly, a University of Vermont (UVM) student newspaper. It is reproduced for the first time here in full  with addition of relevant hyperlinks, images, and video.

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Gadfly: How did you in your youth view electoral politics, both on a national and on a local level?

Sanders: I don’t think any differently than anybody else in my family, my family was a reasonably non-political family. So the issue: electoral/non-electoral was not relevant. When I was a kid, I think I was reasonably sensitive to the plight of the underdog. Both within the context of classrooms as well as nationally: Black people, Native Americans, these sorts of issues.

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Rise of the Berniecrats

By . First published by the Observer.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ defeat in New York’s April 19 primary in many ways tolled doom for his quest to capture the Democratic nomination for president. Despite a string of recent wins in the Midwest, it became clear then he couldn’t beat Hillary Clinton in the big, diverse states that form the party’s bedrock—and that he couldn’t recover from the delegate deficit he ran up losing virtually all of the South.

Still, that hasn’t stopped candidates across the Empire State from running under the Bernie banner, promising to bring his vision to fruition in Albany or Washington. This, if you will, is the vanguard of the “political revolution” in New York.

State Senator James Sanders.

 State Senator James Sanders.

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Radicals in the Democratic Party from Upton Sinclair to Bernie Sanders

By James N. Gregory. First published by The Conversation.

As we watch Bernie Sanders’ supporters struggling to come to terms with the nomination of Hillary Clinton, it makes sense to ask why leftists are involved in the Democratic Party in the first place.

It started in 1934 when Upton Sinclair, author of “The Jungle” and a socialist for most of his life, announced that he would run for governor of California as a Democrat. This began a unique relationship that has been important to American politics ever since.

Why unique?

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Sanders Activists Energize Struggles in the South

By Mike Elk, senior labor reporter at Payday Report and member of the Washington-Baltimore NewsGuild. This article is reposted from Talking Union with the permission of the blog’s owner.

CHATTANOOGA, TENNESSEE – Khristy Wilkinson, a 34-year-old, tattoo-adorned, stay-at-home mom, doesn’t look like your typical Eastern Tennessee politician. Before this year, she had never even considered running for public office, but says that she was inspired to run by the success of Bernie Sanders.

KristyW

Until recently, Wilkinson was an adjunct philosophy professor teaching at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. She has been active in her community, Highland Park, for years, and has been disturbed by the changes gentrification has brought to her neighborhood.

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