Francine Busby Presents “Planting the Seeds of Progress”

As has been our January tradition, Francine Busby, who by now is the past chair of the San Diego County Democratic Party, provided an overview of the post-election state of the party and its future at the January monthly meeting.

Francine opened by introducing Jessica Hayes, who will take over as San Diego Democratic Party chair in a few days. She also spoke about a missed opportunity with Prop 61, which failed, that would have reduced medical and Rx expenses.

Francine then presented her “Planting the Seeds of Progress” presentation. Francine’s view is that we will make progress ‘by building bridges and bringing in those who feel disillusioned.”

She began with a quick review of the “low lights” of the November election. She indicated that “the presidential race highlighted a need to redefine and realign the Party’s platform & message.” But not all was gloomy as statewide Democrats recaptured a super majority in our state Legislature. In San Diego County voter registrations we now lead by 108,000 or 6.6% more than Republicans. Also in San Diego County, Hillary Clinton and Kamala Harris both won by larger margins than President Obama and Diane Feinstein, respectively.

Locally, 93% of party-endorsed positions on ballot measures won. Additionally Democrats elected Mara Elliott as the first Latina to become City Attorney. We also elected Barbara Bry, which ensured a Democratic majority on the San Diego City Council.

In looking ahead, 2017 priorities include:

  • Outreach to newly elected officials through the Democratic Leadership Network: provide resources and tools to build voter constituencies, encourage mentorship, and advance mutual policy goals.
  • Shifting focus to mid-term elections: statewide, congressional, and local races for 2018
  • New County Central Committee was seated in January for this year’s term. Emphasis in 2017 will be on strategic planning, candidate training, listening to Democrats and building grassroots resistance activism, etc.
  • Raising funds to support our operation through the “Donate Every Month: (DEM) program and Roosevelt Dinner on April 8th.

Francine admitted the party faces some challenges ahead. The election did create some intra-party conflicts between various factions of Democrats and Progressives. These must be addressed along with the emotional sting of the loss that has led to anger, blaming, and mistrust. Most importantly however is the immediate need to combat the worst actions of the new administration that harm the most vulnerable – including pushing back at the state and local levels.

But there is a path forward that Francine laid out. At the state and local levels, demographics and registration trends strongly favor Democrats and progressive policies. This bodes well for the future. Additionally, there are several California laws taking effect soon which will substantially increase voter registration, turnout, and education.

What are these laws that will improve election turnout? They include:

  • Any person, not just a household or family member, can drop off a voter’s ballot (as long as not paid or coerced);
  • Registration will now be by default through the DMV. Those skipping party preference step will be flagged as “Unknown,” not NPP (No Party Preference); 
  • Automatic re-registration through DMV when voters move within the state;
  • Technology to help people with disabilities vote electronically, print, and return ballot;
  • Same-day registration on Election Day (only at county voting offices);
  • All voters will be sent mail ballots, and more/earlier drop-off locations added (some counties by 2018, all by 2020).

This is all good information, but an overwhelming concern from many Democrats is “what can we do ourselves to combat Trump’s/GOP agenda going forward”? One key thing is join the “Indivisible Movement”. This is a grassroots effort to teach voters and activists effective tactics, many of which the Tea Party successfully employed. We need to engage in sustained local action targeting our Congressional representatives to be sure they understand constituent concerns. Finally, donating to advocacy organizations helps those groups also stay in the fight on our issues.

As Francine explained, “we all have to do something daily. For instance, don’t watch the inauguration and turn your TV to another station so it will be recorded that you were NOT only NOT watching the transition of power, you were watching something else.”

No doubt the times ahead will be difficult, but we have the power within our hands. If we stay engaged and continue to make our voices heard we may be able to head off big negative changes and certainly, to take back Congress in 2018.

See Francine’s slide presentation.

Solidarity with the Vulnerable at Washington March

In this Nov. 14, 2016 file photo, students from Garfield High School march to rally with other students who walked out to protest the election of Donald Trump as president in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

My mother has a story she sometimes tells about herself as a teenager in the early 1970s: She was hanging out with some friends in a parking lot when a group of boys came over to say hello. One of them, the captain of the high school wrestling team, looked at my mother’s sister, and, for reasons known only to himself, hissed out an angry “Ssslut!” and dumped his soda on the hood of my mother’s car. Words were exchanged. The team captain shoved my mother against her car. So, my mother made a fist, pulled back, and punched him in the face so hard he fell over. She had never hit somebody before and never has since. But she does beam with a certain embarrassed pride when she describes his enormous black eye the next day at school.

My mother raised me to be a feminist: She taught me to be kind, to work hard and to know that the right side of any fight is always against the bully and with the vulnerable. She taught me, should the need arise, to never pull my punches.

On January 21st, I will march in Washington, D.C., with what’s expected to be more than 200,000 women and allies — and one of the largest inaugural protests in our nation’s history. We will march in solidarity with the vulnerable because we know, as my mother knows, that the right side of any fight is always against the bully and with targets of his cruelty.

I will march because American women contain multitudes, and the next four years will be hardest for those of us who belong to communities that have been singled out for threats and abuse. Together in our nation’s capital, we will march with and for immigrants, Muslims, our queer and transgender kin, the disabled and people of color.

I will march for reproductive justice because the choice of when and how and where to have children is one of the most important determinants of women’s social and economic liberation.

I will march because all parents should have the right to raise their children in communities with clean water, good schools and decent health care, and because no parent should have to live in fear that state sanctioned violence will take their children away too soon.

I will march for women’s rights because our right to a full share of human dignity, safe from sexual assault and in control of our own bodies, has been threatened by every element of the incoming administration up to and including President-elect Donald Trump.

Do I think that one march will change the course of history — or current legislative priorities? No. The Women’s March is huge and glamorous and exciting. It is an opportunity to tell our grandchildren, “I was there.” But it doesn’t take the place of the local, everyday organizing efforts we will need to protect our communities and build real change.

Nonetheless, I am a social scientist as well as a feminist, and the science tells me that the first step into a new identity is always the hardest. In Washington, D.C., over 200,000 men and women will take their first steps together across the threshold from bystander to activist. They will do so surrounded by veteran activists, new idealists, musicians, artists, clergy, students, and organizers from across the country. For the duration of that march, we will build a space of catharsis, joy, hope, rage, and commitment, and we will transform one another into the forceful change our nation needs.

I remember watching Pete Seeger at the inauguration of President Obama. That crowd sang with all their hearts that, “this land was made for you and me.” I watched them cry, and I cried, too. When I think about Jan. 21, 2017, I think of other voices. I think of 200,000 shaking voices spread out across our country, across wheat fields and dust waves and fog banks, and I think of those 200,000 scared but determined voices coming together in one place to remind ourselves of what my mother taught me: to be kind and hard working, to know what side we’re on and to never pull our punches.

And I think of those voices going home again to their towns big and small across our country, teaching their song to more people who will do the same in turn. I have faith in what we will do together.

Nobody living can ever turn us back. This land was made for you and me.

Rebecca Fielding-Miller, Ph.D., is a clubmember and postdoctoral fellow, Center on Gender Equity and Health Division of Global Public Health, University of California, San Diego

Jan 21 – Women’s March

On January 21, 2017 we will unite for the Women’s March on San Diego

We, San Diego Women’s March, are peacefully marching in San Diego in solidarity with the Women’s March in DC.  We are dedicated to a free and open society. Together we stand united in our respect for all people and we resist the marginalization of anyone. As a diverse, inclusive community of compassionate people, we seek to strengthen and continue our commitment to work for the protection of women’s rights.

We stand firm in agreement that women’s rights are human rights.

There are two rallies scheduled in San Diego County in support of the Washington D.C. Million Woman March:

SAN DIEGO
When: Saturday January 21, 10 am to Noon
Where: San Diego Civic Center , 1200 Third St, San Diego

SAN MARCOS
When: Saturday January 21, 11 am to 1 pm
Where: San Marcos City Hall, : 1 Civic Center Dr, San Marcos

More details here.

Jan 21 – Women’s March

On January 21, 2017 we will unite for the Women’s March on San Diego

We, San Diego Women’s March, are peacefully marching in San Diego in solidarity with the Women’s March in DC.  We are dedicated to a free and open society. Together we stand united in our respect for all people and we resist the marginalization of anyone. As a diverse, inclusive community of compassionate people, we seek to strengthen and continue our commitment to work for the protection of women’s rights.

We stand firm in agreement that women’s rights are human rights.

There are two rallies scheduled in San Diego County in support of the Washington D.C. Million Woman March:

SAN DIEGO
When: Saturday January 21, 10 am to Noon
Where: San Diego Civic Center , 1200 Third St, San Diego

SAN MARCOS
When: Saturday January 21, 11 am to 1 pm
Where: San Marcos City Hall, : 1 Civic Center Dr, San Marcos

More details here.

Jan 30 – Election Meeting!

Happy New Year! to all of our members and friends.

2017 is already shaping up to be an exciting year. Last weekend record numbers of Democrats voted in the ADEM elections, and several of our members were elected as Assembly District Delegates (ADDs) for their area.  ADDs are responsible for planning and attending informational meetings throughout the region and working with other delegates to represent their community. They are also elected by voters in their district to vote on behalf of the community they represent at Regional Meetings, the California Democrats Convention, and those who are also elected to serve as an Executive Board member are responsible for voting and representing their community at the semi-annual California Democratic Party E-Board meetings.

At this month’s general meeting we’ll be electing the Officers of the Democratic Woman’s Club.

There’s never been a more important time to organize, resist, advocate, and take action to defend our rights and to write the most progressive platform in the history of the Democratic Party.

The purpose of this club shall be to foster democratic ideals by stimulating active interest in the Democratic Party, to support the party platforms, contribute to party leadership and responsibility, to provide a constructive role for the volunteer in Democratic politics, and to promote an activist base.

To enable as many members as possible to take part in the process we’ve moved our regular meeting time of the 3rd Monday of the month back to the 5th Monday – January 30th.

The nominating committee will present their report and we’ll also accept nominations from the floor for the Executive Board positions.

The duties of roles as stated in our current ByLaws under Section 2 – Duties:

A. President

The President shall be the Chief Executive Officer of the club. The President shall preside over all meetings of the club and the executive board; make appointments to other positions as required; act as official spokesperson of the club; stimulate active interest in the political process; provide a constructive role for the active volunteer; contribute to effective leadership and individual responsibility; promote harmony among the club membership, between other clubs and within the San Diego County Democratic Party. The President can sign checks in the absence of the Treasurer.

B. Vice-President

The Vice President shall serve at the direction of the President. The Vice President shall preside at meetings if the President is unable to do so, or is requested by the President to do so. The Vice-President shall take over the duties of President in the absence of that officer, and is responsible for the annual audit, if called for.

C. Secretary

The Secretary shall keep the minutes of the general meetings, executive committee meetings, conduct correspondence, maintain the club’s records, and is responsible for internal communications.

D. Treasurer

The Treasurer shall be responsible for the collection of dues, deposit all club funds received; maintain an accurate record of club receipts and expenditures; sign all checks as authorized by the Executive Board; make the record of club receipts and expenditures available to any member when requested; provide a report of the club financial status at club meetings as requested; provide an annual written report of club financial status; make the books and all other financial records of the club available to the audit committee. In addition, the Treasurer shall be responsible for filing all required financial reports on time.

As well as holding our own election, we’ll also be discussing recent Democratic Party events around the county, sharing experiences from the Woman’s March (January 21) and planning activities for February and March.

We look forward to seeing everybody on January 30, 7pm.


When
Monday January 30 – Social Time from 6:30pm, Meeting starts at 7pm

Social Time
Members are encouraged to get together from 6:30pm before the meeting starts.
Please bring whatever light drinks/snacks that you’d like to share.

Where
We meet at the Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans – PANA
4089 Fairmount Ave, San Diego, CA 92105 (map)

The building is on the south-east corner of Polk and Fairmount, just north of University. Parking is also available at the adjoining Southern Sudanese and East African Community Centers on Fairmount Ave. Bus routes 7 and 13.

Questions?
Call or email (619) 900-4751  [email protected]


 

Click here to download the most progressive State Platform in history

Introduction and Individual Platform Planks