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Sat Aug 15, 2015, 05:12 PM

Why the Sanders wave of support is so Skeery, what it might mean and what more you can do

Many voters do not really understand how Party organizations work, so let me explain and I think you will get some insight into what is really at stake during Presidential year elections. (This is based on my experience and may differ slightly State to State)

Parties exist to get people elected. That is the mission. It's the same for the Republican Party and the Democratic Party and all other Parties. Understanding how the Democratic Party works in most places will help explain why you get Primary races.

So first, the organization. National>State>County>Local>Precinct Captains (Legislative Districts or LDs). At the National and State Levels it is about MONEY and getting people elected to National and State offices. Money plays a big role at the County level as well and to a much lesser extent at the LD level, with some LDs having a great deal of money and some virtually nothing.

This may vary by State, but as elections end, LDs get reorganized and depending upon how many elected precinct captains there are, that determines how many folks are sent to the State Committee meetings where policy can be determined. In AZ, unless requirements have changed to be elected a PC, you must be put on the ballot and receive only 10 votes to become elected. In the month following the election, Chairs, Vice Chairs, Treasurers and delegate members to the State Committee are elected. The larger the LD, the greater the influence. The more money and votes raised, the greater the influence.

State Party organizations leaders and party policies may be elected by delegate members to the State Committee. In 2003, the State Party here had official party policy meetings where delegates could influence and/or speak their minds on Democratic policy. Once these policies are adopted, the National Party may adopt a viewpoint/policy generated at the State level into the National Party platform which gets decided at the National Convention.

Party Platforms typically are generated from the ground up, although there is a great deal of control at the National level based upon the strength of leadership. This leads to broader goals and it also serves to explain why you might have large numbers of people running for a national office when going in, even when they may not be favored to win. It is really about policy influence.

Fast forward to national political candidates and groundswells of support based on a differing ideology from the norm. This is very threatening. It means that change is coming, changes in policy and perhaps even broad changes in leadership. And it all starts from the ACTIVE base.

So..as a Sanders supporter what should you do?

1) Obviously, all of the volunteer and contribution activites that you can on behalf of the campaign.
2) Be a voter advocate and persuade. It goes without saying that everybody here is an opinion leader just by sheer definition of being engaged so early in the process.
3) Find out where your Legislative District meets and go to a meeting. Ask what YOU need to do to get on the ballot as a PC. It isn't hard and its kinda cool to see your name on the ballot.
4) Get engaged at the meetings. Support each other as DEMOCRATS. (You can't act like many do on internet forums, its person to person and common goals and civility goes a long way!)
5) Contribute a little when the hat gets passed.
6) Understand what you need to do as a PC (That is about getting out the Democratic vote in your precinct in the general election)
7) Once the election ends, raise your hand to become Chair, Vice Chair or Treasurer (here those positions mean an automatic seat at the State Committee table)
8) Work to grow the LD, the more members the more go to the State Committee, and IF they are Sanders supporters the Sanders philosophy will be communicated at the State Party level too!
9) Once you are elected to the State Committee, make sure you GO! Stand up and be heard.
10) Find yourself being recruited to run for office in the next cycle because of your work, commitment and generous community nature. (You can always say no thank you)

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Arrow 14 replies Author Time Post
Reply Why the Sanders wave of support is so Skeery, what it might mean and what more you can do (Original post)
SandersDem Aug 2015 OP
azmom Aug 2015 #1
Ed Suspicious Aug 2015 #2
ChiciB1 Aug 2015 #3
merrily Aug 2015 #4
tavalon Aug 2015 #5
abelenkpe Aug 2015 #6
senz Aug 2015 #7
Le Taz Hot Aug 2015 #8
eridani Aug 2015 #9
SandersDem Aug 2015 #12
SandersDem Aug 2015 #10
TBF Aug 2015 #11
L0oniX Aug 2015 #13
SandersDem Aug 2015 #14

Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sat Aug 15, 2015, 05:18 PM

1. Thank you so much for this.

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sat Aug 15, 2015, 05:19 PM

2. Great post! This is what Republicans excel at. They are engaged locally.

This is what we need to do to take the power back. Thanks for the educational post.

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Response to Ed Suspicious (Reply #2)

Sat Aug 15, 2015, 05:49 PM

3. BINGO! This Is WHY ReThugs WIN, PLUS

they WILL vote for their nominee whether they agree or disagree with whomever! Not only that, while some may know the issues far too many only care that they have an R BEHIND their name. I'm going to do all I can to help, but can no longer entertain the idea of PC or more. Caring for an elderly relative with Alzheimer's who lives with us and it's a full time job!

I would simply LOVE to see "we the people" have a voice in who our nominee is this time around. It's going to be a HUGE lift because TPTB will do all they can to KEEP BERNIE DOWN! I've had to post less and less because the kind of DEMOCRACY I grew up with seems to have had a LOT of RULES CHANGED! Or perhaps I should say, we DON'T practice DEMOCRACY, we're RULED by an OLIGARCHY!

JMHO!

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sat Aug 15, 2015, 06:16 PM

4. Thank you for this.

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sat Aug 15, 2015, 06:50 PM

5. There is so much sound and fury on this board right now

Thanks for a post chock full of information!

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sat Aug 15, 2015, 09:37 PM

6. K&R

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sun Aug 16, 2015, 12:30 AM

7. K&R Good information, thanks

 

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sun Aug 16, 2015, 03:29 AM

8. I'm glad the people above appreciate this.

For the rest of us who have been around the block for 40+ years the word "pedantic" comes to mind. Besides, your missive misses several key points AND reeks of Blind Partisanship. If you're going to "educate" people it's important that you first educate yourself.

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sun Aug 16, 2015, 06:13 AM

9. Note that in many states PCOs can also be appointed

This is pretty easy--LD and county organizations really want these positions to be filled. In WA State, uncontested PCO positions are not on the ballot--the filer is automatically declared the winner. The PCO elections are in the primary of even numbered years. You can't get appointed between the primary and January of the next year, but after that, anyone who can fill an unfilled slot is eligible for appointment. You don't have to be a PCO in order to hold LD and County offices either.

Also, there are Acting PCOs, where you are appointed to serve in a neighboring precinct with a vacancy. You can't vote on certain issues limited to PCO participation, though.

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Response to eridani (Reply #9)

Sun Aug 16, 2015, 10:40 AM

12. I did forget to mention

you can also be appointed here in AZ. If you are elected however you should have the priority to go and represent at the State Convention depending on the number of delegates an LD is assigned.

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sun Aug 16, 2015, 09:27 AM

10. My first full on ignore

How refreshing to be able to block someone who brings nothing to the table but negativity.

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sun Aug 16, 2015, 10:15 AM

11. I was a co-precinct leader in 2008 -

and it was a surprisingly casual appointment ("do you have time to help me?" "uh, ok"

The main concern was the caucus - we were expecting to be overwhelmed with people who had never caucused before because Obama's campaign was getting the word out. I will say it is an amazing experience and I would encourage everyone to try it once if you can. The most touching part for me was a few of the very elderly African American voters who made it in via walkers etc. so proud to sign for Obama.

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Response to SandersDem (Original post)

Sun Aug 16, 2015, 12:16 PM

13. Welcome to the group.

 

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Response to L0oniX (Reply #13)

Sun Aug 16, 2015, 08:44 PM

14. Thank you Mr Zappa

Good to be here

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