The following was posted publicly on Facebook last night by DNC member from Virginia, Yasmine Taeb. I’ve added some bolding for emphasis…
I’ve experienced quite a bit of frustration and disappointment at the conclusion of every one of our DNC meetings but nothing quite like what I experienced at the end of our meeting in San Francisco. After months and months of organizing by thousands of young people all across the country, who are simply looking to our Party for leadership, what happened on the floor on Saturday led by our Chair was nothing short of a slap in the face to the thousands of grassroots activists who worked with DNC members on a compromise to address the #ClimateCrisis.
After hours of discussion during Thursday’s Resolutions Committee meeting, committee members adopted Resolution 4 which permitted a multi-candidate discussion on various issues, including a discussion on the climate crisis. This resolution passed out of committee. This resolution addressed the concerns of those who argued other issue-based forums (ie: gun violence, immigration, etc) deserve as much attention. This resolution was what our Chair decided to kill on the floor. What sort of message are we sending to the millions of young people across the country who we simply cannot afford to alienate — a key group that Democrats need in order to win right here in Virginia in 2019, and in 2020 and beyond. DNC members received thousands of calls and letters regarding this issue and it’s our job to represent and fight for the interests of the grassroots. Period.
Three of us (including Tina Podlodowski/WA and Jessica Chambers/WY) were observing the vote count for our side on Saturday. Prior to proxy votes being counted, the vote was 141-118 in opposition to a climate forum. We have more than 535 DNC members who as a whole decide on party matters for millions of Democrats across the country. Less than 50% of DNC members chose to attend the meeting in San Francisco. There were 100 proxy votes, many of whom simply instructed that their vote be “in support of the Chair.” Did these DNC members even know what they were voting for or simply supporting the Chair in everything he does? The final vote count was 222-137 in opposition to a multi-candidate discussion on the climate crisis.
Here’s my recommendation to anyone who is frustrated with the outcome of this DNC meeting: 1) Replace any elected DNC member who voted to kill this resolution (roll call vote will be available soon and will be circulated); 2) Support DNC leadership (ie: officers) who either support a reduction in the number of at-large appointments of DNC members that the Chair is permitted to make or support a change in the method by which these appointments are made. There are currently 75 at-large DNC members. The vast majority of these appointments are Chair loyalists and prevent elected DNC members (like myself) from being able to effectively advocate on behalf of the grassroots, and 3) Support efforts to purge the DNC of corporate lobbyists.
I’m sick and tired of having Party leadership that is not responsive to the grassroots. If we’re serious about being the party of the people and ensuring we engage all communities, including young people, people of color, working families, immigrants, etc. then we need to listen to what the grassroots is telling us.