Week In Review: National Organizing Kickoff a Great Success
On November 15th, Democrats in all fifty states participated in over 1000 individual National Organizing Kick-Off events. Several organizers checked in with the DNC just before their events began. These are the photos from a few of the meetings. If you would like to submit stories and photos from your kick-off, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you'd like to hear Governor Dean's conference calls, click here.
Of the one thousand plus national organizing events held on November 15th, perhaps none was more inspirational than the one hosted by Deborah and Alan Langhoff on Canal Street in New Orleans. Because all of the furniture was lost to Hurricane Katrina, attendees used lawn chairs for seating as a generator provided power for the event. But it wasn't the lights hanging from wooden beams that illuminated the room that shined brightest that night -- it was the awe-inspiring commitment of that group to democracy and Democratic principles that left a lasting impression on everyone at DNC Headquarters as we became aware of the "Lawn Chair Rendezvous" over the course of the day. After hearing Deborah's story, the DNC asked her to introduce Governor Dean on the 7:30 nationwide call. He was so moved by their commitment that he couldn't help but share their story with participants on the final conference call of the evening, and hasn't stopped talking about it since.
Democratic Women truly took the lead by hosting kick off events. Here is some feedback direct from the ladies!
Our Rochester meeting welcomed about 15 people. Some of them will be the activists left standing, so to speak, from hard-fought campaigns this fall. Tonight we are also going to meet some new folks, Democrats from around the county who saw the meeting on the website and are driving some distance to hear Governor Dean.
We have strong feelings that we must organize at the grassroots level even more efficiently and effectively, and we need to raise our money there, also. The program outlined in the PowerPoint presentation, which we will be presenting low-tech on cards, is an excellent overview of what it will take. We have good, strong ties with our local and county Democratic committees, and we can make them even stronger. Feeling that in fact we do have the power.
Monica, Secretary, Brighton Democratic Committee
I've had some experience with conference call house parties; they are a lot of fun and great for organizing. That's why I jumped at the chance to host a meeting tonight where we roll out the 50 State Strategy. We've needed something like this for so long here in West Texas where we are overlooked and isolated. Everybody who lives in a conservative town like Lubbock can probably understand what that feels like. We never see a presidential political ad on TV, our primary comes late, etc. A connection, that's what we need -- have a party with a conference call--what a brilliant way to be connected, to be a part of the Party.
Sue in Lubbock, Texas
Here in coastal Monmouth County New Jersey we are licking our wounds and we are celebrating. We are certainly celebrating Jon Corzine's tremendous victory! That is the best news we have here! However, we are very upset about our losses in our local races. We had wonderful candidates and all of them were close races. We know that in a large part, the bias of our local newspapers against Democrats had a lot to do with the losses. But, we have to be able to get our Democratic message out in spite of the newspaper coverage.
I think that Gov. Dean is way ahead of the curve with the Democracy Bonds! The Republicans are controlled by and the spokesmen for big corporations because that's where their money comes from. It's wonderful to think that the Democrats are controlled by people like all of us--people who are working hard and trying to pay their taxes and raise their families. I bought a Democracy Bond quite a while ago--and am going to buy another. We--the everyday Democrats--need to be the "special interests" of the party.
Susan in Monmouth County, New Jersey
Maybe it sounds corny, but another reason we are excited about hosting a kick off session is that we love to meet new friends and "put the party back in the Democrats!" Imagine my surprise when I checked my email a few minutes ago and eight people I don't know are coming to my house tonight!
Susan, Ocean Grove, NJ
My partner and I decided that we want to make an investment in democracy, an investment in the Democratic Party and an investment with our friends in grassroots movements in Clark County. For this reason, we signed up to host a DNC organizing party. We're excited about the PowerPoint presentation, which we shared last night at the Clark County Democrats meeting. It describes power coming from the grassroots -- and I think that's right. We're looking forward to hearing from Howard Dean tonight and we're looking forward to more information coming directly from the DNC.
The most wonderful thing about being involved in local politics is the friends that we have made. Before we were politically active, we thought partisan politics would be "political" in the bad sense of the word. Instead we have found wonderful people to work with -- wonderful people who are also trying to make a positive difference to America. I feel more connected to my community now than I have ever felt before.
Patrice in Camas, Washington
DEMOCRATS TAKING THE LEAD
2005 GOVERNORS RACES: Our victories in New Jersey and Virginia show us that Democratic Governors continue to win in both blue and red states. People know that Democratic Governors are the leaders they can count on to improve their lives. Democratic Governors champion innovative policies and share America's values: fiscal responsibility; strong economic growth and job creation; better schools for our children; affordable health care; safer communities; and a secure nation. And Democratic Governors balance our state budgets.
* Jon Corzine's winning affordability agenda of creating good jobs and good wages to boost family wages and of lower property taxes; fiscal responsibility, affordable health care, and safer communities resonated with New Jersey voters.
* Tim Kaine's message of effective state management, creating good-paying jobs, tax relief for homeowners, better schools for Virginia's children including pre-kindergarten for four-year-olds, and his transportation plan put him over the top in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Decisive victories on November 8th by democratic candidates Tim Kaine and Jon Corzine demonstrated how we will win in '06 with strong candidates who offer a vision based on the American peoples' priorities. While Republicans offer more of the same failed policies that have led our country in the wrong direction, Democrats across the country offer vision and leadership.
And women candidates were successful at the ballot box in local and legislative races across the country. Women made modest gains in Virginia, and New Jersey posted a record number of women elected to its legislature. Visit the Center for American Women in Politics to view the election results, including big-city mayoral races featuring women candidates, here. These victories were a sign of change to come.
Democrats swept governors' races in New Jersey and Virginia -- Voters in those states made a conscious choice to reject the Republican culture of corruption and their slash and burn politics. They are not alone. We've all had enough -- enough of Republican incompetence, arrogance and corruption. We saw it in Virginia and New Jersey, we saw it on the Senate floor last week when Democratic Leader Harry Reid demanded accountability on Iraq, and we will see it every day from now until our country is put back on track. Democrats are ready to lead.
DNC Announces Dates for 2008 Democratic Convention
The DNC has announced that the 2008 Democratic National Convention will be held Monday, August 25th through Thursday, August 28th. The late August convention date will allow the Democrats to host their convention after the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing and to maximize momentum for our Democratic Ticket in the final months of the Presidential election.
Any registered Democrat may serve as a delegate to the DNC Convention. Each state will begin crafting delegate selection plans in 2007 which will detail the process and how you can get involved and raise your voice in the Democratic Party by serving as a delegate to the Convention.
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