PV Dems December Newsletter

Upcoming Meeting

Save the Date for our upcoming monthly meeting.  Our January PV Dems Meeting will be January 21 at 2 pm at the Peninsula Center Library Community Room and via Zoom.

Help us kick off a critical 2024 with a special guest.  Rick Wilson, co-founder of The Lincoln Project, will join us virtually to talk to us about How Democrats Can Win – Or Lose – in 2024.

Rick Wilson is a renowned political strategist, infamous ad-maker, writer, speaker, and political commentator. In December 2019 Rick co-founded The Lincoln Project, a political action committee whose goal is to hold accountable those who would violate their oaths to the Constitution and would place their loyalty to others before their loyalty to the American people and democracy.

Rick has authored two New York Times bestsellers. His first book, Everything Trump Touches Dies, shot to #1 on the New York Times Bestseller list. His second book, Running Against The Devil – A Plot To Save America from Trump And Democrats From Themselves, was released on January 14th to rave reviews and opened at #4 on the New York Times bestseller list. Rick also writes for The Washington Post, Politico, Rolling Stone, The Hill, The Bulwark, and the London Spectator.  

Rick regularly brings his unique insights to national cable audiences on CNN and MSNBC, NPR, and American and international news national outlets. He’s a frequent guest on Real Time With Bill Maher. Rick Wilson is host of the podcast The Enemies List and co-host of The Lincoln Project’s The Breakdown with Tara Setmayer.

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/5TmWv143zWx7ISHMpuGtxR
Apple:  https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/rick-wilsons-the-enemies-list/id1650861232

A 30-year veteran of national politics, Rick got his start in the 1988 Presidential campaign of George Herbert Walker Bush. He produced groundbreaking political advertising and provided winning, strategic counsel to winning political candidates, SuperPACS, state parties, the national campaign committees, and corporate, association, and government clients across the nation and around the world.

To register for this meeting, click here.

PV Democrats November 2023 Meeting Report

By Nancie Silver —

The Palos Verdes Democrats met virtually on Sunday, November 12. PV Dems 2nd Vice President Ann Nye began the meeting with the day’s agenda and announcements, followed by PV Dems President Connie Sullivan sharing thoughts about her father and his military service, in recognition of Veteran’s Day. PV Dems Parliamentarian Carol Moeller highlighted Activism wins and upcoming opportunities.

Ann introduced Emma Chen, Vice President of Finance for CA College Democrats (CCD), who gave an overview of the organization and its current actions. They are very focused on getting college students involved in the political process. For more information, visit their website at cacollegedemocrats.com. The Palos Verdes Democrats Board voted to donate $250 to the CA College Democrats.

Next, Ann introduced the featured speaker, UCLA Professor of Law Jonathan Zasloff, who spoke about the Los Angeles housing crisis and how a Palos Verdes city can create its own required housing solutions while still retaining its character.

To see the complete report, please click here.

California Democratic Party State Convention, November 17-19

By Connie Sullivan —

You’ve probably heard by now that the state party convention was one for the history books. (We’ll get back to that later). But all the necessary work was completed in full and on time.

The convention started uneventfully on Friday when several standing committees and caucuses met, credentialling opened, and late-night hospitality suites went forward without incident.

Saturday is always the day when they hold two general sessions for all delegates.  In the morning session we heard from various elected officials including Attorney General Rob Bonta, State Senate President Pro Tempore Toni Atkins, and Speaker of the Assembly Robert Rivas.

In the afternoon we were scheduled to hear from the four candidates for U.S. Senate.  The first was Katie Porter, who, like all four candidates, was interviewed by two questioners.  Towards the end of her interview, a large group of credentialed protesters came to the front of the arena and began shouting “cease-fire now”.

To see the complete convention report, please click here.

California Democratic Party State Convention, Opening Invocation

Palos Verdes Democrats member and Muslim interfaith leader, Sara Deen, and Jewish interfaith leader Rabbi Steven Jacobs delivered the 2023 California Democratic Party convention’s opening invocation by simultaneously affirming and challenging Jewish and Palestinian narratives within the state while calling all Democrats to stand together for a “ceasefire on hatred in this country”.

Standing side by side, delivering reminders for Democrats to “commit to understand, to love and to protect one another” in this “time of severe polarization and social conflagration” and “to communicate your passions and differences with an open heart and mind, and not deface one another as a non-human being”, Sara Deen and Rabbi Steven Jacobs demonstrated that our Democratic Party is the party for ALL people, by ALL people.

Our Democratic Party can and should meaningfully honor and uphold the histories and hopes of all Americans, especially when appearing to be intractably divided.

The full opening invocation for the 2023 CADEM convention may be viewed here.

May we find a way forward which offers wholeness, security, inclusion and peace for all.

From the Activism Chair

By Carol Moeller —

Activism Works!

Thank you to everyone who canvassed, called, texted and wrote postcards.  Here are the races we’ve been watching.

1) Reproductive freedom in Ohio  Win  This issue has been on the ballot in six states since the Dobbs decision, and voters have supported reproductive rights in every case! 

2) Virginia Legislature  Win  Republicans had control of the Virginia House of Delegates, while Democrats held a majority in the State Senate. Dems now hold both houses, rebuffing Republican Governor Youngkin’s plan for what he labelled a “reasonable” 15-week abortion ban.

3) Kentucky Governor  Win  Incumbent Democrat Andy Beshear held on, beating his McConnell-backed opponent.

4) Pennsylvania Supreme Court   Win  Democrats now have a 5-2 majority on the Court.  In this swing state, this court is expected to decide key cases, including mail-in voting, redistricting and election certification that could affect White House races in 2024, 2028 and beyond.

5) Mississippi Governor  Loss  Democrat Brandon Presley, a public utilities commissioner (and a second cousin to Elvis Presley), lost in a fairly tight race to incumbent Governor Tate Reeves.  At least nine polling locations in Hinds County, the state’s most populous county (and the one with the highest percentage of Black voters), ran out of ballots multiple times throughout the day on Election Day. Plus, 15% of Black voters in the state are disenfranchised (10% of White voters are disenfranchised).

Colorado (Boulder)   Dems lost but this is one of the first places to use ranked choice voting 

Arizona (Tucson)   Dems swept Mayoral and City Council races

Pennsylvania (Philadelphia)  Win  There are seven seats on the Philadelphia City Council, and the city’s charter requires at least two of the councilmembers must be from an alternate party.  This has resulted in dark blue Philly having 5 Democrats and 2 Republicans.  Since voters there vote for 5 candidates, this year the Working Families Party, a progressive party, asked Democrats to save two of their votes for the Working Families Party candidates to eliminate troublesome conservatives from the City Council.  This worked!

New Jersey   First LGBTQ+ woman elected to the state assembly

Mississippi   First LGBTQ+ person to be elected to state assembly

After a short hiatus over the holidays, we’ll be revved up to work on 2024!  Please join us!

LACDP Report

By Jon Munoz —

At the LACDP meeting, held on Tuesday, November 14, Mark Gonzalez gave a rundown of major labor developments, including agreements and continued pressure at local hotels. 

The Roosevelt Awards held in October were deemed a big success, with attendance far exceeding last year’s event. 

The LACDP Chair’s Holiday Party will be held on December 6 at BMO Stadium and the theme will be taking back the House and protecting the Senate and White House in 2024. Proceeds from the party will help fund LACDP efforts on a wider federal level.  

Rep. Adam Schiff joined the meeting. He gave an update on the budget process and emphasized key Senate races. While noting the unfortunate retirement of Joe Manchin (West Virginia), he also expressed optimism on the reelections of John Tester, Sherrod Brown and Jackie Rosen in Montana, Ohio, and Nevada, respectively.  He was also upbeat on Colin Allred’s chances of defeating Ted Cruz in Texas.  

District Attorney George Gascon later joined to discuss the ongoing 10 freeway fire investigation, crime trends and criminal reform.  Homicides showed a drop over last year along with a drop in the overall crime rate.  On criminal reform he noted 250 re-sentencings, 30 death row removals, and a record number of police officers (96+) that have been charged, with 15 cases of excessive force.   

The Legislative Action Committee provided a year-end overview of endorsed measures that passed and failed in state legislature. Of the 42 LACDP endorsed bills, 12 of the 18 bills sent to the Governor’s office, including enhanced gun and renter protections, and crypto regulations, were signed by Governor Newsom.  

The Labor Committee reported that a key highlight of the SAG/AFTRA settlement was that all actors must be paid if they are used in AI.  California Faculty Association announced a December strike in solidarity with the school plumbers and maintenance workers. There is a boycott on Smart & Final.

The Organizational Development & Chartering Committee announced a January 2024 mini recharter for all clubs.  

The Rules Committee report included a Bylaws amendment updating the definition of voters, Democratic voters and registered Democrats was passed with overwhelming support.  One key change is the inclusion of non-US citizens who meet certain eligibility requirements.

November 2023 Climate Corner

By Fraser Perkins —

After several weeks, Republicans selected Mike Johnson from Louisiana as the new Speaker of  the House. Though less confrontational than Jim Jordan, Mr. Johnson is a MAGA man through and through with hard, conservative positions on abortion, the 2020 election and climate.  Though he admits the climate is changing, as recently as 2017 he remained unconvinced that humans were the cause of Climate Change. He felt natural causes were more likely at fault.  Perhaps you’ve encountered people who concede that Climate Change is real but ascribe it to  natural cycles. Here we go again, again…how do scientists know that burning fossil fuel is  responsible? What facts can you summon to disabuse climate deniers that neither natural  causes nor volcanic eruptions are responsible for Climate Change.

A little high school science provides the answer.

To see the complete editorial, please click here.

November 2023 Color Me A Democrat

By Fraser Perkins —

Donald and the Nothingburger

Donald Trump would have you believe all his alleged crimes were, in the words of Louella Parsons, a gossip columnist of the 1950’s, a nothingburger in contrast to the Biden crime family syndicate. 

This poses a problem for Republicans.  Defending Trump is counterproductive as it keeps the sun shining on his misdeeds, invites comparison with Joe Biden, and distracts from Democratic vulnerabilities.  The best Republican strategy is to ask, “what about Hunter Biden” and then quickly pivot to more fertile Republican ground.  Not so fast.  Trump’s misdeeds are a major campaign issue; they should be carefully dissected and serve as an object lesson of what not to do as president.  In dealing with my Republican friends, colleagues, and acquaintances, I find it helpful to remind them of a few facts; perhaps you will too.

To see the complete editorial, please click here.

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