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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:29 AM
Original message
Suggested Rule Change, your opinion?
Here in Michigan there is a suggested rule change pending, I'm interested in knowing the views of DUers on this.

As it stands one must be elected a precinct delegate in order to have a vote at state convention. The suggested change is to have anyone who is a member of the state party for 30 days or more be allowed to vote if they come to convention. (this doesn't change the amount of votes a county gets, it's proportional voting)

I am for the change as I have seen first hand how some treat their county parties like their own little fiefdoms. They, their spouse, a sibling and best friends are precinct delegates and all are expected to vote at the county chair tells them. Not very democratic.

Of course those who hang onto ever shred of power (real or imagined) as though their lives depend on it are fighting this tooth and nail. I was happy to cast the tie-breaking vote on the rules committee to send it to state central as recommended by the committee. I anticipate a hard fight at that state central meeting.

What do you all think of this rule change?

Julie
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SteppingRazor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:34 AM
Response to Original message
1. As a general rule of thumb...
I think any rule change that results in greater democratization is a good thing.

Given that, I think you have my answer as to whether this is good...
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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:47 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Thanks for the feedback
I'm looking for as much input as possible. The more ideas I can get from DUers on ways to argue this, the better.

Julie
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John Q. Citizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:49 AM
Response to Original message
3. I have a few questions before I make a recommendation.
First, are precinct delegates elected by Dem. voters from the precinct where they live?

If the answer to the above question is yes, then my second question is, How many precinct delegates seats are not filled because no one runs?

And thirdly, what's it take to be a memeber of the State Party? Do you pay some money to join or do you just register as a Democrat?

The only downside I see, (depending on the answers to the above questions) is the potential takeover of the voting at the convention of say, Pat Buchanon, or some other outsiders simply organizing enough people to become State Party Memebers and then doing whatever they want with the Party mechanisms.


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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 12:16 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. Answers
Edited on Fri Sep-30-05 12:17 PM by JNelson6563
First, are precinct delegates elected by Dem. voters from the precinct where they live?


Well, yes and no. Those who are alienated from their county parties (sadly, more than I care to count) are often not involved in this process. In many counties the whole show is run by grasping, self-important, ineffective folks.

How many precinct delegates seats are not filled because no one runs?


Of course this varies from county to county but in my home county many slots are not filled.

As to the "takeover" scenario, I consider this to be highly unlikely. One main reason for this is that most things are basically decided by the time of the convention. The only thing really left to be decided is in the caucuses. That would be to elect District officers and state central delegates & alternates. One must be an officer or delegate to offer up a slate so it's not like a bunch of raiders can come in and seize the Districts.

I hope this info helps.

Julie

On edit: One fills out membership form for the state party to join. Dues are requested but not mandatory.
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John Q. Citizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. If the "raider" scenario isn't a possibility then I would be for the rule
Edited on Fri Sep-30-05 01:31 PM by John Q. Citizen
change. In my county in MT. we had quite a few old guard sort of do nothing but long time souls on the county central committee. They had become used to running things and were resistant to new input/ideas from people who haven't been going to meetings for the last 20 years.

A group of progressive mounted what was considered by the old guard to be a coup, we actively called up folks in precincts that have no committee people and asked them to put their name on the ballot to run, and we got enough votes in the central committee to elect a new chair and some other officers.

After a rough period at first, it has been very good for our county central committee. Much of the old guard have come around and embraced the idea of aggressively working to get Demos elected and are receptive to new ideas and issues.

Change is always tough especially for those resisting change. If you can avoid the (as much as possible)us against them dynamic it will make change easier on everyone.

Don't be naive, though. If the rule change is adopted, your old guard will figure out quick to call up their friends and supporters to turn them out at the State meeting and you could still lose like that.

Good luck!

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NoPasaran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 11:50 AM
Response to Original message
4. An interestsing idea
How is membership in the state party determined? Party registration?
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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 12:18 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. When registering to vote in MI
You do not declare a party. No such thing as a "registered Democrat", not really.

Good to see you NP. Hope it's all good in your world. :toast:

Julie
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NoPasaran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-30-05 12:59 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Good to see you too
Happy that my congressional candidate, John Courage won that DFA All Star thing. :toast:
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