Saturday, July 19, 2008

The power of place ... and the power of process

"The power of place" is a phrase used by Mayor Diana Smith about Seneca Falls. "The power of process" is a phrase one of the audience members at the breakfast event used to sum up the theme of my remarks. I had explained that in some states where I volunteered during the primaries I had done voter protection; I had explained that people who said the Party has its nominee are ignoring the processes set up by the Party itself to determine the nominee. The thread that ran through my remarks is that the entire point of setting up governance processes is to rely upon them when there is a real dispute, not kick them aside in an effort to produce some predetermined result. The power of process.

Not only did I learn phrases from the men and women in attendance, I learned anew just how angry rank and file Democrats are with the DNC, Dr. Dean, and Speaker Pelosi, to name a few. The people at that breakfast are the people who must go to the polls if a Democrat is to take the Presidency this November. Right now, they do not seem to be willing to go. They do not want to vote for Senator McCain. But they do not want to be party to a Party that has eroded their trust because of processes that the Party has already used, especially in caucuses and at the RBC meeting where Florida and Michigan voters were denied full enfranchisement.

These Democrats want to see the Democratic Party run an authentically democratic convention, where the votes for the nominee really count. When I said that I thought it would be easier for people to vote for the eventual nominee as opposed to just sitting out this election were a genuine and meaningful nomination process to occur, everybody in that room nodded. I've said it before and I'll say it again: faux unity is no unity.

The sooner the DNC, Senator Obama, and, yes, Senator Clinton step up together and announce that the Democratic Party does not yet have a presumptive nominee because superdelegates will not be pressured to vote for either Senator Obama or Senator Clinton; and that no candidate will be pressured to agree in advance to refuse nomination, the sooner the DNC will begin to earn back the legitimacy so many of its tactics have cost it this election cycle.


Blogger Misty said...

Heidi, I truly admire you for all that you are doing to assist in this fight for democracy. I made my first video and am hoping to encourage others to make their voices heard. If you would Please take a minute to check it out. I referenced the Denver group too hoping to spead the word to all of those who feel they are alon or have no voice. Thank you again for all you do!!! The people will be heard.

July 19, 2008 at 5:12 PM  
Anonymous atypical said...

The DNC and BO are riding the Carousel of Change and have their collective hands on the brass ring. I don't think they will let go willingly.

July 19, 2008 at 5:15 PM  
Blogger democraticjack said...

You serve democracy well, Heidi. We are so proud to know you.
The DNC needs to understand that in order to insure unity, you bring people into the process rather than closing the door to other than a hand-picked few. It's really had a chilling effect on me.

July 19, 2008 at 5:17 PM  
Anonymous minty said...

Since Obama has been prancing as the nominee with the DNC's blessing, they are not going to admit anything.

It is only enforcing the process by the delegates on the floor that anything will give even the slightest sense of proper process.

That still might not be enough, but it is the only avenue that is available.

July 19, 2008 at 9:01 PM  
Blogger Kimmaree said...

Dear Heidi; your calm, articulate, rational voice has done so much, in a practical way, to support Senator Clinton - you are wonderful.

I am sure Senator Clinton would like to speak out more but her judgement must be that speaking out will not serve her well at this time - no one doubts her (or your) courage when speaking on behalf of other vunerable people.

Speaking out forecefully on behalf of yourself is a more uncomfortable process for many women;she has said that she is no different than other women, in this respect.

For all the times she has spoken up, when no one else would, on behalf of others - this may be her time to have others (like you and the Denver Group) speak up for her.

If it is such a time, you are doing a fantastic job.

July 19, 2008 at 10:42 PM  
Anonymous diana said...

It's really not too much to ask that the Democratic Party should hold a democratic convention.

Please keep up the good work you do.

July 19, 2008 at 11:24 PM  
Anonymous Mirlo said...

Powerful post, Heidi. You make it sound so clear and unequivocal. I don't really understand how anybody could dispute what you say. Your emphasis that this goes beyond the candidates, seems particularly important here; if credibility and "votability" (heck, I don't even know if this word can be used!I mean the freedom for people to feel able to vote at all and not forced to stay home)is to be restored, the procedure has to be respected. If procedures need to be changed, it cannot be done during the process, but needs to be negociated before or after; again in accordance with the rules established for the change of this particular procedure as well. Anything else does not merit the label "democratic"

July 20, 2008 at 6:12 AM  

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