Category Archives: Opinion

Opinion pieces written by members that reflect the values and position of the Club.

Opportunities to flip CD-10 from Red to Blue – November 2017

Work being done in CD-10 – the end of summer is not the end of action!


Working America

If you want to support labor, Working America is where you want to volunteer.  Working America, the community affiliate of the AFL-CIO, is a “knock on every door” in depth canvassing operation. They believe there is common ground across a broad spectrum of working-class people and are working to bring them together to make change.

Since last year’s election, the media regularly reports the country is more divided than ever. Working America’s front porch conversations with voters paints a different picture. Whether it’s Black, Hispanic or White voters, jobs & the economy and health care are the two issues all three groups rank as their most important. That’s the common ground Working America is using to build a winning coalition that will win back the House in 2018.

Working America is looking for volunteers to supplement their field team in CD-10, Jeff Denham’s district. Working America has their office in Modesto where the weather is definitely cooling off and the issues are heating up. Their schedule is less regular over the holidays but they have opportunities for you to volunteer through early January.

You can find out more information about, and signing up for the training/ canvassing at this URL. There’s also a link on this page to the form you need to fill out. http://www.workingamerica.org/centralvalley/volunteer

The canvassing takes place on Saturdays starting 11 am as well as some Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays in the late afternoon starting at 4 pm (bring a light with you).

Even though each person’s canvass does not reach many people, the response rate from the people you talk to is outstanding. Using a mix of their paid staff and volunteers they have knocked on 27,879 doors with conversations at 53% of the door and 10,590 signed on to be a part of Working America. That’s an amazing 71% of the people who were talked to joined. Keep in mind, in most canvassing operations, you are excited if you get to talk to 25% of your list and overjoyed if you get 10% of your list to be supporters.

Working America’s strategy does not stop with the initial deep canvass contact. They send those who join periodic emails on the specific issue the people felt most strongly about. Not only did the volunteers listen at the door, Working America follows up with information and occasional action items related to their important issue – becoming a “trusted source”.

Working America has expanded into CD-21 as well. Rep. David Valadao is just as bad as Jeff Denham and last year Hillary Clinton won CD-21 by 16 points. With a very strong Latino community and the administration’s anti-immigrant policies, this district is another likely pick up in 2018. The next volunteer canvass date is Dec. 2.


Democratic Club of Greater Tracy

Headed by Vecky Elliott, President of the Dem Club of Greater Tracy, the club is seeing results from their Grassroots Organizing Team canvassing (GO Team). Tracy’s City council has been historically conservative and in the recent past it’s had a 3 to 2 conservative majority. Over the past month they’ve seen a definite shift with three crucial votes going in our favor on a 3 to 2 vote.

Vecky’s convinced that the “deep canvass” program developed by the San Diego Dem Party has raised Democratic visibility enough to push the swing vote to support more progressive policies. The club has trained 236 new volunteers to be GO Team canvassers. Their work in energizing the grassroots shows exactly what organizing can do.

Indivisible Berkeley was canvassing this past weekend. They knocked on 186 doors, had 57 conversations, registered 5 people to vote and most importantly got 8 possible volunteers to help Vecky expand the GO Team in Tracy. Every canvass shift is generating these kinds of numbers and that’s why this approach is building momentum so quickly in Tracy.

Vecky also worked to fill the house for a recent campaign stop by John Chiang that was sponsored by the San Joaquin Democratic Central Committee. She’s looking for ways to make sure Democrats in Tracy feel comfortable in talking to their neighbors about what is possible locally if they just work together.

All of the canvassing will be in Tracy.  Even with the holidays almost here, they are planning on going mid-day canvassing on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. If you want to canvass or want to learn more about the GO Team concept click here: http://www.greatertracydems.org/join-the-tracy-go-team.html

In an effort to form lasting relationships, the GO Teams will follow up the initial contacts with information on local events, issues of importance and ways that they can become involved. The mission of the Tracy GO Team is to help support Democrats running for local, state and national seats in 2018 and beyond.


The California Democratic Party (funded in part by the DCCC March into ’18 initiative)

The CDP is working to flip House seats in 2018. They have put paid field organizers into three districts here in California; CD-10 (Jeff Denham), CD-25 (Steve Knight), and CD-49 (Darrell Issa).  The program in CD-10 is headed by Lucia Nunez.

Here’s what Lucia has to say; “This summer we knocked on tons of doors across CA-10 and I want to thank all of you who joined us.  There’s still canvassing to do this year and if you’d like to bring a bigger group and adopt an event, please get in touch with me to see which event needs the most help.” Email Lucia at LNunez@cadem.org.

Here are her December canvass dates being hosted by Swing Left – Stanislaus County:

Saturday December 9, 2pm to 6pm. Bring a light for after dark. Sorensen Park, 2522 Donner Trail, Riverbank, CA. RSVP https://actionnetwork.org/events/129-riverbank-canvass?referrer=lucia-nunez&source=direct_link

Saturday December 16 10am to 2pm. Canvass in Turlock. RSVP https://actionnetwork.org/events/holiday-canvass-in-turlock

The CDP is doing “deep canvassing” similar to Working America and Greater Tracy Dem. Club.  Our canvass asks the person’s support for the President, the top issues they are concerned about and, where the conversation permits, a discussion of Democratic positions versus those of Jeff Denham. They are also doing voter registration at the door for anyone in the household that is not currently registered.


Indivisible Berkeley

Indivisible Berkeley has lined up next Saturday, Nov 18, to do a joint canvass with Crystal Sousa from Swing Left Stanislaus County and CDP Field Organizer Lucia Nunez. Indivisible Berkeley’s long term plan is to organize group canvassing twice a month in CD-10. Here is the information on this month’s canvassing:

Saturday November 18 – Turlock – 10am to 2pm. Early Bird Special – Leave Berkeley at 8am. There will be a short training session before the canvass to familiarize people with the mini-Van application on smart phones. If you don’t have a smart phone you’ll be paired up with someone who does.

You can email the Indivisible Berkeley coordinators; Billy McDonald (billymcdonaldnp@gmail.com) or Jeff Carlock (carlockjeff@gmail.com) to sign up.  They’ll fill you in on the staging locations and any other questions you might have.

If you need a ride, or can take people to the canvass in your car, make sure you sign in here: https://www.groupcarpool.com/t/rs5jn3.


The Democratic Women’s Club of Stanislaus County

The Democratic Women’s Club of Stanislaus Countyis headed by Patty Hughes and now that the weather is cooling off she’s heating up CD 10. The Club held a forum with eight of the candidates seeking to replace Denham in attendance. We need more forums like this to get our Democratic candidates some exposure.

If you are looking to volunteer in person, you can go to her volunteer site – http://defeatdenham.com/

The Women’s March Modesto is being organized by Patty and she would like you to put the date on your calendar. Saturday, January 20th, 2018 – ‘Hear Our Vote.’ Save the date to activate and engage in Modesto.

Since the historic Women’s March on January 21, 2017, where one thousand people marched through Modesto, the DWCS has been working to broaden our movement. Like our sister actions we will focus on getting out the vote in the 2018 midterm elections. The year will focus on getting more women and allies into office and other leadership positions, with actions focused on voter registration, voter mobilization, supporting women running for office, and electing more women in more offices. If you would like to volunteer or sponsor this action please email: DemWomensClub@gmail.com

If you want to help without needing to leave the Bay Area, she’s also putting together a phone bank hub to get pledged votes and do volunteer recruitment.. For more information contact her at 209-303-4042 or by email at HughesCo.Political@gmail.com


California Away Team

The California Away Team is headed by Shabbir Safdar. It is a group of passionate Democrats who volunteer to leave safely Democratic places to go to battleground elections and volunteer.  This is their fourth election cycle running this program and in this election they are focusing specifically on Congressional districts in California where the number of Democrats who skip the midterms is close to or greater than the margin of win.

They run a program to activate registered Democrats who skip the midterms with a “Get Out The Vote” campaign targeted solely at those missing Democrats.

Currently they are focused in CD-07 where there were 50,000 missing voters in the last mid-term election. Energizing those missing voters will help keep this seat blue.  Shortly they hope to open a new front in CD-10 to take down Jeff Denham. To make this happen they will need some organizing team members to get the program off the ground.

You can read more about the California Away Team and the opportunities in CD-10 to activate midterm-skipping Democrats at their website:  http://www.calawayteam.com/midterm_skippers_in_ca_10


Super PACs

Super PACs targeting all 7 of the Congressional Districts Hillary won in California last year that still have Republican Representatives. You can give money to the PAC’s or you can wait, pick your progressive candidates in early 2018 and then give the money directly to your favorites.

Courage Campaign – Help take back the House in 2018

https://www.facebook.com/CourageCampaign/photos/a.164423892567.119987.7364882567/10155244831712568/?type=3&theater

Ellen Tauscher – CA 07 Project – focus just on Congressional District 7

https://www.ca7project.com/

http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/06/23/borenstein-tauscher-has-a-plan-to-unseat-seven-congressional-republicans/

Michael Eggman – Red to Bue California PAC – focus on 7 Congressional Dist.

https://www.redtoblueca.org/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/california-midterm-elections-democrats_us_594fe14be4b02734df2b15fb?ncid=inblnkushpmg00000009

In addition Patty Hughes has a PAC called “Californians for a Democratic Congress”. The PAC has already started an aggressive push to hold Republicans accountable in the Sinful 7 districts as well as CD-22 (Devin Nunez) and CD-04 (Tom McClintock). Let’s make sure we win every competitive race we can in California.
http://caforademcongress.com/

Organizing for California, also headed by Patty Hughes in Modesto, is a 501c4. This organization can take donations for candidates from computers and office supplies to software and food. The idea is to find the resources that progressive campaigns can rarely find the cash to pay for. Before you toss that old iPad or the next time you go to the office supply store.  Think about Organizing for California and what your donation can do.  http://organizingforcalifornia.org/


Phone Banking in El Sobrante for the Doug Jones in the Alabama Senate Race

Nancy Klein has been holding weekly phone banks into races around the country. She just finished up with the Virginia elections and is now concentrating on the Alabama Senate race in support of Doug Jones. If you can’t come out and walk, please think about phone banking into other important races.

Here are the dates for her upcoming phone banks (all phone banking is from 1pm to 3pm and takes place at her house, 4241 Harmon Rd., El Sobrante – 510-917-4045):

  • Tuesday Nov. 14
  • Sunday Nov. 19
  • Tuesday Nov. 21
  • Tuesday Nov. 28
  • Sunday Dec. 3
  • Tuesday Dec. 5

Please email Nancy if you plan on attending one of her phone banks. nancyklein44@gmail.comBring your phone, charger, earbuds AND laptop (let her know if you need to borrow one) as well as your good cheer and positive energy.


Thank you for all your work!

Vincent Casalaina, Past Northern Vice Chair, Progressive Caucus CDP

 

Assembly District 15 Candidates for 2018

As of today (11/11/2017), there are 9 declared candidates for Assembly District 15, which is being vacated next year due to incumbent Tony Thurmond being term-limited out and running for state Superintendent of Schools. The candidates are:

Video of AD-15 Candidates Forum in San Pablo 11/4/2017

The African American Caucus of the CA Dem Party held an informative and interesting candidates forum for the Assembly District 15 candidates. Link to the YouTube video is here, or see below for the embedded video. All nine declared candidates were present and answered questions from the forum moderator, African American Caucus chair Darren W. Parker (https://www.facebook.com/darren.w.parker):

The candidates attending were:

  • Judy Appel (Berkeley school board)
  • Ben Bartlett (Berkeley city council)
  • Jovanka Beckles (Richmond city council and Our Revolution endorsee)
  • Dan Kalb (Oakland city council)
  • Andy Katz (EBMUD board)
  • Rochelle Pardue-Okimoto (El Cerrito city council and CNA endorsee)
  • Owen Poindexter (writer and UBI advocate)
  • Cheryl Sudduth (community organizer)
  • Buffy Wicks (Obama’s CA campaign organizer)