A COMMENTARY ON CALIFORNIA’S STATE DEMOCRATIC PARTY CONVENTION

Opinion
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Hilbert Morales
EL OBSERVADOR

The CA State Democratic Party Convention held in San Diego this past February 24-25, 2018, was unusual in that its delegates took note of and reacted to the millennials who were ready to go independent when and if their progressive concerns were not addressed. What are the millennial’s concerns?

Simple: Comprehensive Immigration Reform; Equal pay for equal skills and knowledge applied on the job; Redistribution of wealth enabling reduction of working poor populations; Universal Health Care for all (single payer); A woman’s right to choose; Fair taxation wherein all of us pay our fair share; maintenance of community safety and security; Let’s deal with the homeless; Affordable housing programs with financing programs which encourage home ownership; sustainable nutrition programs (food stamps & school lunches); Realistic education and job training programs (none are ‘free’; require a ‘community service payback’); minimize corporate imperialism…if a corporate executive is illegally self-serving; send him/her to jail), replace ‘Trickle down economic theory’ with a ‘trickle up economic theory; etc.

An important indication was the outcome: No one was endorsed because no candidate received the 60% delegate vote required. Senate candidate Kevin DeLeon received 1,508 (57%) of the delegate vote. Incumbent Senator Dianne Feinstein received 1,023 (37%) of the delegate vote. (As she walked to the podium, some delegates chanted ‘DiFi-Your Time is UP!) This is direct evidence that ‘politics as usual’ was not happening.

The CA State Democratic Party strategists are recognizing that the 4O% Hispanic population will not remain ‘loyal Democratic voters’ without seeing the acceptance and enactment of legislation which deals with their ‘millennial concerns’.

The Hispanic-Latino-Mexican community must become motivated to ‘get out their vote’; those votes cannot be ‘bought’ with DARK MONEY though efforts will be made to influence their turnout with propaganda promotions which will be based upon ‘alternative facts’.

Candidate Kevin DeLeon’s campaign strategists would be well advised to be prepared for ‘campaign promotions’ which do not convey the facts, truth, nor realities being faced by marginalized working class folks who end up ‘paying the bills’ anyway.

Senator Dianne Feinstein, as the ‘establishment’ incumbent, will be a formidable candidate because of her independent personal wealth (estimated at $54 million) plus a campaign fund already having $3 million balance. DiFi is a member of the wealthy elite (0.1%) who has lived a privileged life style. During her 25 years of public service, her contact with the ‘working middle class’ was limited. She has not attended several CA Democratic State Party Conferences in the recent past.

At this point, Kevin DeLeon has $350,000 campaign fund balance plus the right heritage and experience to be a formidable candidate who has a good opportunity to be elected California’s Senator. Think of the following possibility: In the near future, both CA Senators will be individuals whose origins are based in ethnic communities which dominate today’s population. With the election of Kevin DeLeon these under-represented communities will become directly represented by individuals who have personal experience with the challenges being faced today by CA’s working-class residents.

But to achieve that direct representation in the U.S. Senate, ethnic communities, especially Hispanics, will have to focus upon their common heritage, interests, and concerns in order to prevent being ‘sliced and diced’ into competing groups who do not congeal into the massive voter turnout needed to achieve the leadership changes needed in Washington, D.C. And, Kevin DeLeon has stood up to several of Mr. Trump’s inappropriate public policy statements (THAT WALL; SANCTURARY CA)

Kevin DeLeon is of Mexican heritage; grew up in San Diego’s barrios; and has become the role model which many millennials may want to emulate. In a recent National Public Radio program, he reminded the reporter that under his leadership, Sacramento established an independent system, which contains no conflict of interest, and which will deal with sexual harassment issues in a very timely manner. Kevin DeLeon said, “The administrative review system is now such that it will become the model to be copied by other states.”

In addition, Kevin DeLeon reminded the moderator that ‘We need to be careful not to minimize the proper aspirations of those who have been assigned in the past to the sidelines by the establishments. These millennial constituents will become this nation’s future leaders despite being ‘persons of color’, despite having origins in marginalized, disadvantaged communities. It is time those communities have direct representation in keeping with the demographic transitions which are already happening. Social, economic and political changes are happening and merit public’s support.”

In other campaign contests:
For Governor, Gavin Newsom continues as front-runner with 1,087 votes (39%); John Chiang: 836 votes (30%); Delaine Easton: 546 votes (20%) and Antonio Villaraigosa: 241 votes (9%).
For Attorney General, Xavier Becerra is an excellent choice who has already ‘taken on’ the Trump Administration with law suits on behalf of ‘DACA/Dreamers’, Resisting construction of THAT WALL; on behalf of the State of California as a ‘Sanctuary State’; resisted the offshore oil drilling, etc.

The Hispanic Community, during this 2018 Mid-Term election will have its responsibility to learn about candidates, issues, and to vote in their own best interests. That will require some attention to gleaning the truth, the facts, and the reality being faced as a community. Be assured that the DARK MONEY establishment with all its Super-PACs will be doing their thing with promotions designed to misinform, confuse, and misdirect. If, as a constituent, you personally want to make a difference; to be one of millions of ‘social and economic change agents’, then plan to do your homework so that future elected officials are beholden to ‘We, The People’ rather than to some special corporate interest.

In this era of ‘rapid information’, it is possible to elect officials whose interests take into account the reality we all face because working together things can be improved for all of us. Our society can achieve the community safety and security that permits having an economy and government which fairly distributes essential resources to people. I do not believe that Divine Providence which created this universe and all its resources, meant for those resources to be owned and controlled by only 0.1%…. Capitalism and competition are great ways to create wealth; the challenge is to now devise distribution systems which meet the needs of ‘We, The People’. That means electing new leaders who share our concerns and values and get beyond ‘the money’.

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