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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

In Regards To Super Delegates

Category: 2016
Posted: 09/07/17 13:07

by Dave Mindeman

Let's go back, for a moment, to 1972. I was a young college student and very much into the anti-war movement. It was my first foray into politics and like many young Vietnam war protesters, I was against both the Republicans and the Democrats for allowing this mess.

Enter George McGovern. McGovern galvanized the movement into a political one. As Eugene McCarthy gave the movement a birth right in 1968, George McGovern gave it a political voice and political power.

Backed by an army of political neophytes that was going to "change the world", George McGovern stormed through the primaries and won the Democratic nomination. The convention was an anti-American, anti-war diatribe that denounced the Nixon administration in no uncertain terms but in addition, it made the independent part of the electorate wary of a left extreme that seemed to warn them of chaotic consequences.

McGovern was shellacked in the 1972 election. Nixon had 520 electoral votes and got 61% of the vote. The margin was 18 million voters. The Democratic Party was decimated everywhere.

Upon self-examination of how vulnerable the Democratic Party was to, what was considered, extreme politics, they put forward the concept of "super delegates". It was hoped that a block of elected officials as automatic delegates would calm the waters.

Super delegates in the Democratic Party has stayed with us to this day. And a lot of people think it is some kind of party attempt to rig the nomination for people they want.

Although the super delegate concept is probably outmoded today, there has never been a nomination where they changed the outcome from the primary/caucus process. Never. Not even in 2016 because Hillary had the most delegates without any super delegate count. Those elected officials could only have changed the nomination by voting for Bernie instead of Hillary.

Yet, somehow, the super delegates have become some kind of rallying cry for Democratic Party corruption.

I doubt anyone would question the idea of doing away with super delegates, but then if you want to go to a convention, do you really want to compete with Walter Mondale for a position?

Super delegates is another non-issue blown up into a grievance. The Democratic Party has enough grievances.

Don't create unnecessary ones.
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Democrats Need To Unite Going Forward

Category: 2016
Posted: 01/21/17 02:15

by Dave Mindeman

There is one absolute when it comes to resistance to the new regime. And that is that the Democratic Party has to act as one...from now on.

I am done with listening to the talk about the "corrupt" DNC. The talk about how Bernie would have won. I am done with the bashing of Hillary Clinton. I am finished with listening to it, responding to it, and trying to compensate for it.

None of it matters and I would hope that everybody realizes that to fix this travesty, it is going to take a united front.

If I hear about any more "protest" votes, I think I'll just smash my fist into the nearest wall.

Your "purity" and "standards" are pretty much worthless right now. This Democratic Party still stands for something, but not as a bunch of fractured elements. It has to stand with one purpose - to take everything back that we have lost. All of it. The Presidency, the Congress, the State Governorships, and the State legislatures.

If you want to argue about the details, save it for when it can matter. Only when we have the majorities that can make the difference will it really matter.

Environmentalists? For the next 4 years the best you can do is tread water. Civil Liberties? Try to hold your own. Peace movement? Your way forward is bleak. Voting rights? We will probably have to fight without the courts. Abortion rights? It will be an uphill struggle.

But we will have no chance at all, if we act as factions and not as united opposition.

When we have achieved the goal of taking back power in this country, then you can argue about what needs to be done - about whose priority matters more - about what needs protection first.

Then and only then will any of that matter.

The work to win in the 2018 mid terms starts now. It has to and it has to start by staying together and fighting as one unit. The "I told you so" pomposity - the us vs them mentality - the "it has to be my way" talk is going to end. It is imperative. If you are angry at the DNC, then change it but do it the right way - from within and through proper channels.

We are the Democratic Party - if you favor Green Party principles, go work with them. If you prefer more independent action, do it with someone else. If you are part of the Democratic Party, then support the candidates that emerge from the sanctioned process or from the people's primary. But DO NOT GROUSE about unfairness if you lose within the confines of this Party. We work hard for a candidate, but in the end, the standard bearer for any November election must be supported to victory.

It is that simple and that complicated. We can't afford splits and factions and whining. This is about something bigger and more important.

So, as a united Party, let's act like it.
comments (1) permalink

Goodbye 2016

Category: 2016
Posted: 01/01/17 01:25

by Dave Mindeman

So long 2016. Can't say I am sorry to see you go. You took a lot of the best of us with you...and left us with a truck load of uncertainty.

I won't be celebrating the new year. Just can't do it. It doesn't feel like we are taking any kind of step forward...more like several steps backward.

Goodbye to you 2016. You allowed us a glimpse of history in the making and then yanked the rug out from under us.

The political victors are happy. They will be celebrating the unexpected turn of events in this remarkable year. But 2017 may not be so kind to them either. The old adage is, be careful what you wish for. For 2017, that stands as being oh so true.

Adios 2016. We will try to carry on. You seemed to be intent on erasing a lot of our memories. You took so many of the iconic people that we treasured from bygone days...and then added a few of the younger generation as well. It was a cruel thing to do, especially when so many things were in turmoil. Were you trying to tell us something. Do we need to reassess who we are?

We will remember you 2016. We will remember the barriers you broke... some good, some bad. We will remember how you shook our democracy and left our future in the shaky hands of an unknowable force. We will remember those we have lost and how irreplaceable they seem.

We will remember you 2016 and then we will move on. Where we are going is now in the hands of the 2017 and beyond. We will adjust. It will not be as easy as in the past, but we have done it before. Because we understand who we are at our core.

We may run into obstacles that seem insurmountable, but that just makes us all the more determined.

2016...you will not defeat us. We may be knocked down, but we will get back up. And we will persevere until we can make 2017 and the years that follow a time that will show our resilience and our true character.

Goodbye 2016. Can't say it was good to know you.
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