From: Nicole Rivera
Sent: Tuesday, December 06, 2005 5:44 PM
Subject: Founding the Action Caucus and Running for Congress by 2010
I too am a big believer in standing up and taking a stand. Enough with the complaining! If "we" (progressives) want to change the Democratic party then we will have to do it ourselves. Politics is not a spectator sport.
1. We recruit a committee of YDA (Young Democrats of America) leaders throughout California who are willing to make moving the Action Caucus program forward their number one political priority for '06. We have representation on that committee from every chapter in the state (we're already well on our way to this goal).
2. We work with partners (eg. Democracy For America and Latinos For America, both of whom have agreed to work with us) to get activists from each of those chapters well-trained in running electoral volunteer mobilizations (running precinct walks, phone banks, etc.).
3. We equip each of these chapters with the tools to thoroughly screen candidates for endorsements. This includes a standard candidate questionnaire (which we've already created and used to vet Phil Angelides & Steve Westly for CA Gov.), and a common set of practices (choose key principles from the YDA platform to use as a litmus test for each candidate, devote one full meeting to hearing candidate testimonies, one E Board meeting to making recommendations for the next general meeting, one more full meeting having open discussion about who to endorse and then a secret ballot vote, perhaps accompanied by an online voting procedure -- I know someone who can provide this technology).
4. We supply each chapter with tech tools to facilitate volunteer mobilizations, such as a sophisticated open source member database system (called CiviCRM; we have it on our site) and mass emailer.
5. We compile a list of endorsed candidates from each chapter along with specific volunteer goals (eg. x number of volunteers walking precincts for y number of weekends in a row), and use our committee to push for accountability to those goals.
Nicole Rivera http://actioncaucus.org/about
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