32ND L.D.’S “BIG TENT” DEMOCRATIC PARTY*

32ND L.D.’S “BIG TENT” DEMOCRATIC PARTY*

PROGRESSIVE WING

Progressives tend to advocate a relatively social democratic agenda.  Unifying issues among progressive Democrats in the 32nd  include support of public education and opposition to charter schools;  support of fair trade and opposition to free trade agreements such as the TPP;  support environmental action to combat climate change and ocean acidification;  opposition to war in the middle east, opposition to neo-liberalism and social conservatism, opposition to corporate oligarchical influence in government, support for universal health care or single-payer health care, revitalization of the national infrastructure; outspoken support for civil and human rights; oppose income inequality,   and steering the Democratic Party in the direction of being a more forceful party.  Compared to other factions of the party, they’ve been most critical of the Republican Party, and most supportive of direct democracy.  

The Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) is a caucus of progressive Democrats, along with one independent, in the U.S. Congress.  It is the single largest Democratic caucus in the House of Representatives.  Its members have included Congressmen Dennis Kucinich, Alan Grayson, John Conyers (MI) Barbara Lee (CA), Jim McDermott (WA) (who represents the entire 32nd Legislative District), John Lewis (GA) as well as Senator Bernie Sanders (VT) who carried the 32nd LD with 72% of the vote in the 2016 primary.

Progressive Democratic candidates for public office have had popular support as candidates in metropolitan areas outside the South, and among African-Americans nationwide.  Senators Paul Wellstone (MN), Elizabeth Warren (MA) and Sherrod Brown (OH) have been described as progressive.  Other famous progressives include Eugene McCarthy and Ted Kennedy.

*Thanks to Wikipedia (accessed May, 2016) for contributions to this explanation of the “Big Tent”

LIBERAL WING

Liberal Democrats are to the left of centrist Democrats but more moderate than the progressive wing in the party.  The liberal faction was dominant in the party for several decades, although they have been hurt by the rise of centrist forces such as President Bill Clinton.  Compared to conservatives and moderates, liberal Democrats have advocated the right to abortion, more spending on welfare and social programs,  a less militaristic foreign policy, and have a reputation of being more forceful in pushing for civil liberties.  In the 1970s, modern liberal politicians began to include comsumer protection, opposition to capital punishment and environmentalism.

Prominent liberal Democrats include current U.S. Senators Barbara Boxer (CA), Tom Harkin (IA), and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (CA).

CENTRIST WING – NEW DEMOCRATS

Centrist wing, or New Democrats, are an ideologically centrist faction within the Democratic Party that emerged after the victory of Republican George H.W. Bush in the 1988 presidential election.  They are an economically liberal and “Third Way” faction which dominated the party for around 20 years starting in the late  1980s after the US populace turned much further to the political right.  They are represented by organizations such as the New Democrat Network and the New Democratic Coalition.

The New Democrat Coalition is a pro-business, pro-growth and fiscally conservative wing of the party.  Compared to other Democratic factions, they tend to be more supportive of the use of military force (including the war in Iraq) and free trade.  They were willing to reduce welfare by supporting the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act of 1996.  They support health care reform.  They wish to reduce deficits and pay for infrastructure improvements by raising taxes, especially on the wealthy.  One of the most influential factions was the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC), a nonprofit organization that advocated centrist positions for the party.  The DLC hailed President Bill Clinton as proof of the viability of “Third Way” politicians and a DLC success story.  The DLC disbanded in 2011.  Much of the former DLC is now represented in the think tank Third Way.

Some of the Democratic elected officials have self-declared as being centrists are former President Bill Clinton, 2016 presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former Vice President Al Gore, Senator Mark Warner, former Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell, former senator Jim Webb, Senators Joe Manchin (VA) Claire McCaskill (MO), Tim Kaine (VA) Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and Governor Jay Inslee (WA).

The Democratic Leadership Council was a group that supported centrist Democrats and called for the Democratic Party to be the party of centrism.  The New Democrat Network supports socially moderate, fiscally conservative Democratic politicians and operates the congressional New Democrat Coalition in the House and Senate.  Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton was a member of the coalition when in Congress and Senator Barack Obama self-described as a New Democrat.

LIBERTARIAN WING

Civil liberties advocates, and people against national debt, also often support the Democratic Party because its positions on such issues as civil rights and separation of church and state are more closely aligned to their own than the positions of the Republican Party, and because the Democrat’s economic agenda may be more appealing to them than that of the Libertarian Party.

They oppose gun control, the “War on Drugs,” protectionism, corporate welfare, governmental borrowing, and an interventionist foreign policy.  Some civil libertarians also support the party because of their support of habeas corpus for unlawful combatants, opposition to torture of suspected terrorists, extraordinary rendition, warrantless wiretapping, and indefinite detention without trial or charge, the Patriot Act, the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base and what they see as the erosion of the protections of the Bill of Rights.

In the 2010s, following the revelations by Edward Snowden about NSA surveillance in 2013, the increasing advent of online decentralization and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, the perceived failure of the War on Drugs, and the police violence in places like Ferguson, some Democratic lawmakers worked alongside libertarian Republicans like Senator Rand Paul to curb what is seen as government overreach in each of those areas.

The Democratic Freedom Caucus (DFC) is an organized group of this faction, although it prefers to use terms such as “freedom Democrats” or “freedom-oriented Democrats.”  The DFC does not use the term “Libertarian” on its website because while it advocates individual liberty and limited government power, t considers its economic policies to be more progressive than, for example, the Libertarian Party.  This is especially so because the DFC is in the tradition that hold that land and natural resources are subject to fundamentally different economic laws than human-made products.  The DFC advocates a tax shift away from things like labor, (and the products thereof) and sales and towards spatial-locations and natural resources.

Another group, The Libertarian Democratic Caucus (LDC) seeks to build libertarian coalitions on issues regardless of political party.  The Democratic Freedom Caucus ten ds to focus on taxation while the LDC targets civil liberty issues such as legalizing victimless crimes.  The LDC is a Democratic organizations, but it advocates working with the Libertarian Party and libertarian Republicans, such as the Libertarian Republic Caucus, on issues they have in common.

CONSERVATIVE WING

Conservative Democrats are Democratic Party members with conservative political views, or with views relatively conservative with respect to those of the national party.  While such members of the Democratic Party can be found throughout the nation, actual elected officials are disproportionately found within the Southern states, and to a lesser extent within rural regions of the several stations generally, more commonly in the West.

The Democratic Party had a conservative element, mostly from the South and Border regions, into the 1980s.  Their numbers declined sharply as the Republican Party built up its Southern base.  They were sometimes humorously called “Yellow dog Democrats,” or “boll weevils,” “Dixiecrats.”  Nowadays, they are often called a Democrat in Name Only.  In the House , they form the Blue Dog Democrats, a caucus of fiscal and social conservatives and moderates, primarily southerners, willing to broker compromises with the Republican leadership.  They have acted as a unified voting bloc in the past, giving its forty plus members some ability to change legislation.  The Blue dogs added nine new members as a result of the 2006 midterm elections.  Occasionally, the term “conservative Democrat” is also made to describe politicians who are left-of-center on economic issues but conservative on social issues, or communitarians, rather as many “liberal Republicans” are fiscal conservatives.

Many conservative Southern Democrats defected to the Republican Party, beginning with the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the general leftward shift of the party.  Strom Thurmond of South Carolina, was one of them.

A newly emerging trend is the return of active pro-life Democratic groups and candidates.  Some of these candidates have won office or are backed by the party establishment in their state.  The largest national pro-life group within the party is the Democrats for Life of America.  Pro-life candidate Bob Casey, Jr. (PA) was elected as a U.S. Senator in the 2006 midterm elections.

July 9th, 2017 – 32nd SUMMER PICNIC!

Summer Picnic
Date: Sunday, July 9th, at Lynndale Park in Lynnwood
The picnic will be from 11:30am-3pm.
We ask everyone attending to bring a salad or dessert or side dish.
 
The menu provided by the 32nd Democrats: flank steak, hamburgers, hotdogs, bratwurst, turkey burgers, veggie burgers, baked beans, corn on the cob (non-GMO). We’ll also supply water, lemonade, soda, and ice.
 
Awesome Opportunities:
We need: Set-up at 10 am
People to Barbecue from 11:30 am to 3 pm (can do short shifts)
Clean-up is 3-4pm
If you are interested in helping email marilyndauer@yahoo.com

June 14, 2017 – 32nd Monthly Meeting – NEW LOCATION

 

If you really want to make a friend, go to someone’s house and eat with him… the people who give you their food give you their heart.”

-Cesar Chavez

June 14th, 2017  Monthly Meeting – Endorsements and Dinner 

Mountlake Terrace Senior Center  23000 Lakeview Drive Mountlake Terrace, WA 98043

MAP

**Information for candidates here 
**Membership must have been updated by May 18 to be eligible to vote June 14th
AGENDA
6:00 PM – Dinner courtesy of our Latino Community partners  
               ($10 donation suggested proceeds to fund the Resistance)
6:30 PM– Open Mic – Step-Up 3min
 
7:00 PM  Agenda and  May 10, May 21  Minutes Approval
                     Elected Officials and Candidates Recognized

7:10 PM   ENDORSEMENTS 
             Shoreline City Council
             Lynnwood City Council
             Edmonds School Board District 4 and 2
             King County Prop 1
             Additional floor nominations - 

8:25 PM Break – Raffle!! 

8:30 PM 32nd Business Meeting

Committee Reports
Resolutions:

New Business – PCO Appointments

Good of the Order

  • 9:15 PM Adjourn

Help put Chairs and Tables put away

 

32nd Dems Special Meeting – May 21, 2017 4:30 PM

32nd Dems Special Meeting – after filing week Endorsement Meeting

May 21, 2017 4:30PM – 6:30 PM

Edmonds Senior Center                                                                                                220 Railroad Avenue                                                                                          Edmonds, Washington 98020 MAP

Special Endorsement Meeting for:
Seattle Mayor
Seattle City Council
Port of Seattle
additional positions may be considered – 
Link to Endorsement Rules and Information
http://32democrats.org/2015/01/endorsements-overview/

May 10, 2017 – 32nd Endorsement Meeting – NEW LOCATION

2017 Endorsement Meeting

May 10th, 2017 Wednesday

Mountlake Terrace Senior Center  23000 Lakeview Drive Mountlake Terrace, WA 98043

MAP

“Voting is a civic sacrament.” – Theodore Hesburg

 

**Information for candidates here 
**Membership must have been updated by April 13 to be eligible to vote May 10th
AGENDA
6pm – Dinner courtesy of our Latino Community partners  
($10 donation suggested proceeds to fund the Resistance)
6:30– Open Mic – Step-Up 3min
 
7:00  Agenda and April 12, 2017 Minutes Approval
            Elected Officials and Candidates Recognized

7:10 PM   ENDORSEMENT MEETING

8:25 PM Break – Raffle!! 

8:30 PM 32nd Business Meeting

Committee Reports
Resolutions:

New Business

Good of the Order

  • 9:15 PM Adjourn

Help put Chairs and Tables put away

May Day 2017

AFL-CIO

Throughout North America and globally, May 1 is a day to remember and respect workers’ rights as human rights. As working people take to the streets in communities around the world, a quieter but equally important movement of workers on both sides of the United States–Mexico border has been growing.  Read more here…

100 Days of Action Kick Off!

** Action Item – Help flip the State Senate to a pro-environment majority **
Join Washington Conservation Voters , Washington Environmental Women’s Alliance and other community partners to kick off election season with 100 days of action! They  will share with you some of the strategies this election season, discuss some key issues and themes for this election, and talk about how we will engage our friends, communities, and neighbors in this critical election. Come ready to take action, ask questions, and share  your most pressing issues!

Sunday, April 23 at 6 PM – 8 PM

Wilde Rover Irish Pub 111 Central Way, Kirkland, Washington 98033
RSVP here: https://www.tfaforms.com/4611871
Questions? Email Emily at emily@wcvoters.org.

_______________________________________________________________________

What to do – Plan to attend a neighborhood canvas in the 45th or one of the special election events hosted by Washington Conservation Voters (WCV) this month.

Why it’s important – We must make sure our state government can resist federal environmental rollbacks AND make real environmental progress here in Washington by electing a pro-environment majority in the Senate.

Regardless of what district you live in, this election is going to take all of us working together as Washingtonians, fighting for environmental progress and justice.

How to take action – Lots of great options!

1. Sign up to help identify likely voters in the 45th this weekend (April 8) in Bothell.
https://www.facebook.com/events/355848174809203/

2. Attend WCV’s Redmond Community Environmental Action meeting on April 11.
https://www.facebook.com/events/1664609213554330/

3. Attend WCV’s Woodinville Community Environmental Action meeting on April 13.
https://www.facebook.com/events/305844326500651/

4. Attend WCV’s 100 Days of Action Special Election Kickoff in Kirkland on April 23.
https://www.facebook.com/events/676575945862852/

 

Issue analysis wrap-up: TrumpCare implosion

A lot of ink (so to speak) and air time (ditto) has been devoted to Beltway politics this week, due to the on-again, off-again vote on #TrumpCare (AKA repeal of ObamaCare).

This post contains the best stories/analysis on Friday’s implosion … ready-set-go!

1. ‘Hello, Bob’: President Trump called my cellphone to say that the health-care bill was dead

First up: Trump called this Washington Post reporter to tell him the bill was dead. Look who Trump blames for its defeat.

“We couldn’t get one Democratic vote, and we were a little bit shy, very little, but it was still a little bit shy, so we pulled it,” Trump said.

Trump would also use this deflection with the NY Times:

“Look, we got no Democratic votes. We got none, zero,” Mr. Trump said in a telephone interview he initiated with The New York Times.

2. “Moving from an opposition party to a governing party comes with some growing pains”

This quote from Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) may have given me the most heartburn of any that I read.

Why is that? Because

  1. The GOP has controlled the House of Representatives 18 of the past 22 years. The prior two years (2015-2016), the GOP controlled BOTH the Senate and the House.
  2. For half of Bush’s presidency, the GOP controlled the House and the Senate. That was NOT very long ago. And the folks in Congress? They leave, in the main, when they decide to retire or do something else. Our “re-election” rate is on par with countries that hold faux elections.
    average tenure congress
    Average Service Tenure, Senators and Representatives, FAS
    Reelection rate, OpenSecrets
  3. Had the GOP actually wanted to govern — that is, move the country forward — it would have been working with the minority party in the House the past six years. Instead, it saw a black man in the White House and said, in effect, “Hell no.”

Moreover, a year ago, the Republican-controlled House and Senate sent an American Health Act (ACA/ObamaCare) repeal bill to the President for his veto, safe in the knowledge that it would be vetoed. This is not governing. This is pitching a hissy fit designed for photo-ops and reelection soundbites.

Groundhog Day references will likely be inevitable when the House votes once again Tuesday, Feb. 2, on legislation to repeal ObamaCare.

The House has voted more than 60 times since Republicans took over the majority in 2011 to undo the healthcare law. Tuesday’s vote, however, will be the first attempt to override President Obama’s veto of a measure to overturn his signature legislative accomplishment.

Consideration of the repeal measure – the first to pass both the House and Senate – is expected to stall after this week’s vote. Republicans are not expected to secure the necessary two-thirds majority to override a presidential veto.

3. The Republican Waterloo

Whether or not you agree with him, David Frum usually provides something to chew on in his essays. This 23 March essay fits that bill and provides important historical context. Plus, it reinforces #2 (above).

It seemed to me that Obama’s adoption of ideas developed at the Heritage Foundation in the early 1990s—and then enacted into state law in Massachusetts by Governor Mitt Romney—offered the best near-term hope to control the federal health-care spending that would otherwise devour the defense budget and force taxes upward. I suggested that universal coverage was a worthy goal, and one that would hugely relieve the anxieties of working-class and middle-class Americans who had suffered so much in the Great Recession. And I predicted that the Democrats remembered the catastrophe that befell them in 1994 when they promised health-care reform and failed to deliver. They had the votes this time to pass something. They surely would do so—and so the practical question facing Republicans was whether it would not be better to negotiate to shape that “something” in ways that would be less expensive, less regulatory, and less redistributive.

4. “The GOP right blows up its best chance to reform government.”

This is an unsigned op-ed from the Wall Street Journal (paywall), but worth finding a copy to read (see below on how to do that, legallly).

House Republicans pulled their health-care bill shortly before a vote on Friday, and for once the media dirge is right about a GOP defeat. This is a major blow to the Trump Presidency, the GOP majority in Congress, and especially to the cause of reforming and limiting government… Republicans have campaigned for more than seven years on repealing and replacing ObamaCare, and they finally have a President ready to sign it. In the clutch they choked….

Republicans run the government and that means they are responsible for what happens in health care. Messrs. Trump and Ryan are right that the ObamaCare markets are imploding, and prices will rise and choices will shrink again next year on present trends. Republicans can try to blame Democrats, but they’re in charge….

This failure also reveals the unfortunate skills gap between Democrats and modern Republicans in practical legislative politics. Democrats have their Bernie Sanders faction, which claimed to “oppose” ObamaCare in 2009-10 for lacking a government-run public insurance option. But the far left voted for the bill anyway because they concluded, rightly, that a new entitlement was a great leap toward single-payer national health care….

An ideal free health-care market is never going to happen in one sweeping bill. The American political system is designed to make change slow and difficult, thank goodness. Republicans have to build their vision piece by piece…

But much of the current conservative establishment profits from fanning resentments, not governing. Legislative compromises don’t help Heritage Action raise money for its perpetual outrage machine. An earlier generation of leaders at Heritage understood that the goal of winning elections was to achieve something. The current leaders seem happy with failure.

The WSJ editorial board has been increasingly vocal in its unhappiness with this Administration.

[For greater Seattle-area residents, login to SPL; go to the newspaper database reference page; then click “National Newspapers” to access ProQuest; the WSJ and NYT database links are on this page. If you live in the greater metro area (Thurston – Snohomish) and do not have a Seattle Public Library card, talk to me!]

5. Making an “enemies” list

I tweeted Friday that one disappointment from pulling the bill was that GOP representatives got a “pass” from having their “yes” votes on the record. (A vote is more powerful than a statement that someone plans to vote one way or another. Rubber meets road.)
https://twitter.com/kegill/status/845370730560708608

I wasn’t alone, it seems, but in reverse. From the NYT:

One Hill Republican aide who was involved in the last-minute negotiations said Mr. Bannon and Mr. Short were seeking to compile an enemies list.

***

Two final notes, for the record. A potential “no” vote does not mean that the Representative thinks ACA should be retained. And what was it that they didn’t vote on, anyway?

What stories of note did you read?

Cross-posted from WiredPen. Share natively on Facebook

April 12, 2017 32nd Monthly Meeting

Coming up:   April 12th, 2017 Wednesday

Masonic Hall Shoreline, 753 N 185th St, Shoreline
Directions (GoogleMaps)

Breaking News – Dinner and Movie!
Ready for secure, affordable, and comprehensive health care coverage for all? Come to the screening of the new documentary “Now is the Time” and panel discussion including a perspective on Senior issues with 32nd Senior Opportunity Committee Chair Birgit Ages.
Come at 6pm for a “family dinner”.
Vegetarian lasagna with handmade pasta
Assortment of fresh baked bread and spreads
20 item delicious salad bar
 
April 12th, 2017 
6pm – Dinner courtesy of our Latino Community partners –     Vegetarian Lasagna night ($10 donation suggested proceeds to fund the Resistance)
6:30– Open Mic – Step-Up*
7PM – Movie screening – “Now is the Time”
trailer here – https://edvideoplus.vhx.tv/packages/now-is-the-time-condensed-35-minutes-download/videos/ntt-trailer-10-29-16
____
*We are following the 44th LD’s new tradition of “open mic” time from 6:40-6:55PM called “Step-Up”. Members opportunity to step- up to the microphone and take 3 minutes to share.

____________

Agenda

6:30PM Sign-in, Set-up, Socialize

6:35PM NEW – open mic – 3 minutes each!   

7:00PM Meeting Called to Order
Pledge

Elected Officials and Candidates Recognized

7:10 PM Now is the Time – screening followed by panel discussion

8:25 PM Break – Raffle!! 

8:30 PM 32nd Business Meeting

  • Committee Reports
    • Bylaws Presentation and Adoption consideration
    • Committee Updates and Reports
    • Resolution: 
  • New Business
  • Good of the Order
  • 9:15 PM Adjourn

Chairs and Tables put away