While Donald Trump won the presidency and Republicans kept control of Congress, California went the other direction. Voters returned Democrats to Congress, won a supermajority in the state Legislature and passed liberal ballot measures to address mass incarceration, gun safety, school funding and taxing tobacco.
We’ve had six years of Democrats in charge of the Legislature and every statewide office — and five straight on-time balanced budgets since Californians approved the majority vote budget initiative in 2010.
Democrats have Tea Party Republicans on the run here, and we’re going to do the same to Donald Trump.
That’s why I’m asking committed Democrats to consider becoming delegates to the state party.
In January, Democrats will elect more than 1,100 delegates from California’s 80 Assembly Districts. These delegates will select the next chair and party officers in May, endorse candidates who will lead us in 2018 elections, vote to support or oppose ballot propositions, and be the backbone of our liberal party by deciding on our platform and positions.
You need to file to run by December 8, and then win election at an ADEM Caucus meeting held locally on January 7 or 8. To be eligible, you must have been registered as a Democrat by October 24, 2016, in the Assembly District where you are running.
Before you run, you should know what California Democrats stand for:
We oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership on the grounds that it would continue the trend of offshoring American jobs and driving down wages.
We support a common sense ban on deadly assault weapons.
We support abolishing capital punishment.
We support meaningful tax reform that eliminates corporate welfare and achieves a more equitable tax system for working families.
We endorse Black Lives Matter.
We believe that health care is a human right and support a single-payer health care system.
We support debt-free college and free community college.
We reject any attempt for new offshore oil or gas development, call for an immediate moratorium on fracking, support the closing of California’s last dirty nuclear power plant, and urge Congress to pass a comprehensive energy security and climate protection law.
We support overturning the decision in Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission and to end the doctrine that money is speech, by Constitutional Amendment if necessary.
We advocate for extended voting hours and days, scheduling elections on weekends, or declaring Election Day a holiday.
We support tying the votes of “super delegates” to the popular vote in the presidential nomination process.
None of these mean anything if we don’t have leaders supported by the grassroots who will fight for them. It’s our job at the state party to endorse the kind of leaders who will do the right thing.
And when we stand by our principles, we win on Election Day. That starts with you getting involved in your party.
Even if you don’t run as a delegate, you can still have your voice heard. Show up on January 7 or 8 at an ADEM Caucus and vote for delegates to represent you. Visit our website to find out more.
John L. Burton
California Democratic Party