DemDaily: Download On The DNC Fall Meeting
October 12, 2021
The meeting, usually a three-day political passion fest of Democratic leadership, committee members, speakers, and supporters from across the country, was held virtually for the second time since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Democratic National Committee (DNC) is the formal governing body for the Democratic Party, responsible for establishing and promoting the Democratic Party principles, and coordinating strategy and activity to support the election of Democratic candidates at the local, state, and national levels.
It organizes the Democratic National Convention, held every four years to nominate a candidate for President, and formulates the party's official platform.The most prominent agenda item on the otherwise predominately procedural meeting was the status of the upcoming 2021 gubernatorial races - in Virginia and New Jersey - now just three weeks away.
Saying we are "laser-focused on the elections underway in Virginia," DNC Chair Jaime Harrison said the national Party had made an unprecedented $5 million investment in the battleground race where Democratic nominee and former Governor Terry McAuliffe and Republican Glenn Youngkin are in a dead heat.
With trademark enthusiasm, McAuliffe spoke to the members about his record, while underscoring the significance of the race to the outcome, if not forecast, of the 2022 midterms.
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy (NJ), who is up for reelection, also spoke to the DNC, as did Congressman and House Majority Whip James Clyburn (SC). The four-hour general session, which also featured a series of videos highlighting the accomplishments of the Biden administration, included remarks from President Biden.DNC Members
The most significant vote during the meeting was on approval of the DNC's new At-Large Members.
There are 447 DNC Members who are elected or appointed as delegates to a four-year term from five categories. Some are elected on the ballot as part of the state's Democratic primary, while in other states they are elected by the State Democratic Committee or State Convention.
Those numbers also include 75 individual members who represent different constituencies and are leaders "at-large" who are nominated by the DNC Chair, with input this year from the White House, and approved by a vote of DNC members.On Saturday, DNC members approved the slate of At-Large Members, with little controversy outside of some objections to the shift in geographic representation. The number coming from Delaware, Biden’s home state, will bump to five from one, and the number of members from Washington D.C., will increase from 15 to 20.
Members also ratified the official list of Standing Committee Members, which includes including the Rules and By-Laws, Budget & Finance, Credentials, and Resolutions Committees. For the purposes of the Fall meeting, the committees met earlier last week, with recommended resolutions and amendments adopted by vote at Saturday's general session.
In addition to regional Caucuses, the DNC has constituency caucuses that include Asian American and Pacific Islander, Black, Hispanic, LGBTQ, Native American, Women and Disability, which is now a fully recognized caucus.
Show Me The Money
DNC National Finance Chair Chris Korge reported on the success of the Party's fundraising efforts. The Party has raised over $100 million this year, setting a record for the most funds raised in a year after a Democratic presidential election victory. That includes over 100,000 new donors.
Korge reminded the audience, however, that former President Trump has raised over $100 million for his PAC.
DNC Treasurer Virginia McGregor reviewed the unprecedented list of early investments the DNC had made "to help Democratic candidates up and down the ballot." Those include the $25 million I Will Vote initiative, $5 million in voter registration programs in battleground states, $3 million for the campaign readiness training program, $4 million in coalition organizing, $30 million in the largest tech team ever, and $10 million in data acquisition technology, among others. The national party has also made its largest yet to each state party, with a minimum budget increase of 25% each.Unity
In his remarks, President Biden was forthright in his assessment of the challenges before us as a party, and as a people, on the pandemic, voting rights, immigration, the courts, gun safety, healthcare and a woman's right to choose.
As always, his central message was a call for unity, saying, "We need to stay together, bound by the values we hold as a party. Here's the deal. We won 2020 as a unified party, and as we look to 2022, we need to stay unified.
"We are all bound together by one of the most consequential campaigns and one of the most consequential first eight months of a presidency in the history of this country."
"If we deliver today across the board, 50 years from now people are going to look back and say this was the period, this was the moment, America won the 21st Century....... because we stayed true to who we are as Democrats, and who we are as Americans. Let's get it done." - President Joe Biden
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