Is the Democratic Party Anti-Democratic?

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The Democratic National Committee’s Unity Reform Commission holds its final meeting in Washington, D.C. Friday and Saturday. C-Span is now carrying proceedings live.

KURT WALTERS, kurt at demandprogress.org
Walters is campaign director of Demand Progress / Rootstrikers, one of a dozen groups that sent a letter Thursday to the Democratic Party. The letter states: “As the Unity Reform Commission prepares to recommend reforms to the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination process, the undersigned organizations write to express our continued opposition to the undemocratic role of unpledged ‘superdelegates’ in the nomination process. On behalf of our more than 12 million members, we urge the Commission to recommend the full elimination of superdelegates’ power to overrule the will of Democratic primary voters in selecting the party’s presidential nominee.”

Among the groups signing the letter: Center for Popular Democracy Action, Courage Campaign, CREDO Action, Demand Progress Action, MoveOn.org, National Nurses United, NDN, Other98, Our Revolution, Presente Action, Progressive Change Campaign Committee, Progressive Democrats of America, RootsAction.org and Social Security Works.

The chair of the Unity Reform Commission, Jennifer O’Malley Dillon, was a co-founder of Precision Strategies. Huffington Post reported recently that “The DNC relied on multiple consulting firms during the election, but the two most prominent — and highest paid — were Precision Strategies and SKDKnickerbocker.”

While party officials have proposed reducing the number of superdelegates for the 2020 national convention, the new report “Autopsy: The Democratic Party in Crisis” warns that allowing any remaining superdelegates “would still represent a barrier to a democratic Democratic National Convention.” The report concludes: “The superdelegate system, by its very nature, undermines the vital precept of one person, one vote. The voting power of all superdelegates must end.

PIA GALLEGOS, [in D.C.] pia at gallegoslaw.com
Gallegos, a civil rights attorney and Democratic Party ward chair based in Albuquerque, is the author of the Autopsy report’s “Democracy and the Party” section.

KAREN BERNAL, [in D.C.]  nekochan99 at hotmail.com,
Bernal chairs the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party. She wrote the section on social movements in the Autopsy report and co-wrote the section on the future of the Democratic Party.

While the Democratic National Committee recently claimed: “We pride ourselves on being inclusive and welcoming to all,” the Democratic Autopsy Task Force released a statement Friday: “The DNC gave less than 48 hours notice — waiting until late in the day on Dec. 6 — to publicly disclose the times when the final meeting of the Unity Reform Commission would take place. Even then, although the DNC had stated that ‘the meeting is open to the public’ and required an online ‘RSVP,’ members of the public (who signed up online after being told only the dates and the name of the hotel) had not received any response, so they remained in the dark as to the times when the meeting would be held. In effect, the DNC took steps to minimize public attendance.”

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