Unlike some progressives, the Greens come to mind, it appears that Bernie Sanders Democrats are working to take over the California Democratic Party.
This is the sort of stuff that needs to be done, it is a grueling grind, but this is what the flying monkey wing of the Republican Party did after Goldwater’s loss in 1964, and it took them nearly 20 years to take over.
Seriously, more of this:
For California’s “Berniecrats,” the fire’s not out yet.
Nearly a year after propelling Sen. Bernie Sanders to a close second finish against Hillary Clinton in California’s presidential primary, some of his most ardent supporters are still organizing – this time within the state Democratic Party itself.
At stake is the party chairmanship held by the departing John Burton, a liberal icon, a longtime lawmaker and former Senate leader who became chair in 2009.
Vying to replace Burton are L.A. County Democratic Party leader Eric Bauman, currently the state party’s vice chair and a major power in California labor politics. Facing him is activist Kimberly Ellis, the director of Emerge California, which seeks to have more women and people of color elected to public office.
Rather than fading into the sunset with their defeated standard-bearer, Sanders’ activists emerged from November both irked and emboldened.
They have joined forces with other some other progressives to support Ellis and take over the party’s leadership, promote a more left-leaning policy agenda and diminish the clout of corporations and business-friendly moderates.
They surprised insiders by dominating the obscure process — electing a third of the delegates for the state convention, scheduled for May 19-21 in Sacramento. They believe they have turned the once-sleepy race for a new party chair into a serious contest with Bauman, long viewed as the front-runner.
“We see our biggest opportunity as the party,” Edelstein said. “We want to make a concerted effort. If we can change California, we can change the rest of the country.”
[Former Santa Cruz Assemblyman Fred] Keeley said the continued organizing and activism by Sanders backers is rooted in their long-term agenda.
“The organization has continued on because it wasn’t a personality cult or anything close to it,” he said. “These folks by and large are relatively sophisticated players. They do understand that while this may be mind-numbing and uninteresting to most people, this is the thing you need to do to effect change.”
Once the dust settled from November, California’s Berniecrats focused on the weekend party meetings held in January to elect state party delegates from each Assembly district. They partnered with other progressives to build slates of candidates and then used Hustle – a texting application used extensively in the Sanders campaign – to turn supporters out.
This is how you gain effective political power. It’s a lot duller than, for example, running Ralph Nader for president, but this sort of concerted efforts at the local level works ……… If it can be sustained.
Win or lose, they are going to have to fight this battle for decades.