North Carolina Democratic Party Convention News

After a quick three hour drive, we arrived in Raleigh and easily found parking despite the hysteria on Facebook from a few in the party warning us that a PREVIOUS employee had planned the convention LAST FALL and there were four high school graduation ceremonies at the convention center that would make parking difficult. I'm sure some who arrived after 11:00 a.m. had a harder time finding parking, however there were entire sections of the parking deck empty when we pulled up.

The convention hall is very organized and they are now moving people forward because the number of attendees does not match the number who RSVP'd for the convention. That happens at an event this large. It is a nice facility...so...go Raleigh.

Voller just recognized a gentleman who was part of D-Day to a standing ovation.

Will continue....

12:53

Almost 1:00 p.m. and Voller is still talking. Nice rally speech, but we have to drive back to Union County tonight...so let's get on with it. :) Voller is followed by a video from the President.

Attorney General Roy Cooper is up next.

"Isn't it fitting that this convention would be held where high school after high school is holding graduation because WE are the party of public education."

Paraphrasing - Republican power is unchecked. We have a tax plan that offers only tax breaks to the upper 1% while 80% of the rest of us will see increased taxes.

Worst election law changes in the country making it hard for people to register and vote.

They are giving teachers more students than they can teach and less pay and respect than they deserve.

How about the refusal to expand 100% federally funded Medicaid expansion?

They are sending billions of dollars to other states while depriving the state of tens of thousands of healthcare jobs.

We need to demand that they provide opportunities for working families and we need to demand that they clean up the coal ash ponds and not at taxpayer expense.

We can't rely on this governor and his fellow Republicans to change so we have to beat them at the ballot box. We went to sleep in 2010 and we can't do that again. We have to get out the vote.

In 2014 we eat into these super majorities in the legislator and we re-elect Senator Kay Hagan.

2016 is when we take our state back from these extremists! We will take back the legislature and we will elect a Democratic governor.

OK folks....we just heard from our next governor. Best speech I've ever heard Roy Cooper give.

1:11

Casey Mann is reading a letter from Senator Kay Hagan who is taking part in a memorial for Maya Angelou in Winston Salem.

Nice, short, and sweet.

1:12

Mayor Andy Ball is up to give recognitions - introducing elected officials and each is receiving applause.

1:18

Patsy Keever introduces candidates...asks them all to line along the front and wave as she calls their names. Asks for us to thank them with applause...and campaign contributions of course!

1:25

Muriel Offerman given award for her service to the party.

1:28

Melvin Williams announces that we have a quorum. Minutes are adopted quickly.

1:29

Floyd McKissick giving a report. Thanks the loyal activists - the backbone of the party - all in the room today. He testified in Washington this past week about the independent expenditures flooding certain races in NC - Supreme Court race specifically.

1:38

Senator Josh Stein is up next. He's a really good speaker and he's outlining the horrible, restrictive, discriminatory, asinine, legislation coming from NC Republicans. Heh...we may be here all day if he mentions ALL of the legislation.

1:43

Justice Robin Hudson - we expected opposition, but we didn't expect to be part of the Koch brother's plans to buy up Supreme Court seats across the nation. She mentions other judicial candidates and said North Carolina courts are not for sale.

1:45

Sam Ervin, IV - We cannot have a politicized court system and we may be heading that way unless we can get people to stand up against it.

1:48

Missed this speaker...was chatting with Vicki Boyer! I will find out who is speaking in this slot because she is fiery! She brings up 2018 and says in 2018 we want it ALL back because we redraw district lines. It's Carla Cunningham. I'm sitting so far back I couldn't see her, but recognize her now.

1:52

Rep. Nathan Baskerville is speaking now. Very nice delivery. His message is basically that we believe we can do great things for this state without destroying it. He said we need to stand up and show up at the polls.

158

Duane Hall from Wake County was going to list the worst ten votes of the legislature, but after 3 minutes he says he had about 30 of them...so he is just mentioning a few.

#1 Denial to extend health coverage to 500k North Carolinians.

It isn't just an issue of ideology. Thousands are going to die because of the regressive nature of this legislature.

If we take back just 7 seats in the House or 3 seats in the Senate this year we can end the Republicans supermajority.

2:06

Voller recognized David Parker who had to leave for a wedding. Maybe it is Harry Johnson's.

2:11

Adopting standing rules....and there is a motion and second on the floor to adopt.

Question about where to get the rules...about half of the delegates did not get copies of the rules.

Rules are being handed out and someone asks for five minutes to read the rules...then reduces it to two minutes and now it has a second.

So far, not making the rules/minutes easy to find outside is the only glitch I've noticed this morning. Others might see something I missed.

Short quasi recess

rules are adopted

2:22

Matt Hughes is introduced as the convention chair. He is fired up and ready to go! He says so because we are going to re-elect Senator Kay Hagan. Matt introduces executive council.

2:30ish

We are currently pulling resolutions that all appear to give power to the NCDP. Thank you to the people who read through the resolutions and really put a lot of thought into this process. There is a lot of knowledge in this room - people with experience who can see issues with resolutions because of their extensive experience.

Gentleman who wants to pull a resolution for amendment, when asked why he wanted to pull a resolution, replied to Voller, "Because you suggested it," to laughter.

I will address resolutions later. Things are going too fast and I'm trying to listen and take part.

3:15

Debate opens on the resolution that is most controversial - requiring independent auxiliary groups to follow the party plan of organization instead of their own bylaws. I voted in favor of pulling the resolution for further debate and happy to say the resolution failed and our Democratic auxiliary groups remain independent and not under the control of those getting ready to once again rewrite the party plan of organization.

3:34

Voller interrupts debate to introduce Justice Cheri Beasley. Great, great, fair, and extremely intelligent woman. So glad she's on the right side of justice.

Comments

Hi folks....Will update this as I can

Greg Flynn is also here.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Also...free Wifi would be better

but it was worth the $8.45 to chat with you guys.



***************************
Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

On a juvenile bathroom humor note

The seats in the convention hall must have whoopee cushions installed in them. We are standing and sitting to vote (for a visual 10% count to determine if we have enough votes to pull resolutions) and each time we sit you can hear a chorus of tweets across the room.

I've obviously been here too long.... and we haven't even made it to debate!



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

With that sort of comment title

you know that will be the most-read comment of the month :-D

-------------------------------------------------------
"What I see from the folks who are opposing our agenda is whining coming from losers." -- Thom Tillis

Hehehe

The first time it happened after the Pledge of Allegiance it was a bit surprising. :) Not as humorous after that, but I notice people are sitting down more carefully to avoid the embarrassing tweeting sound.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

.037% of global warming gases due to human flatulence

Also known as the carbon @$$print. And yes, I just made up that statistic, reaffirming the unwritten rule, "73% of all quoted statistics are made up on the spot." Making it no longer unwritten...

:)

I figured you were ready for a little silly.

Funny

I'm certainly in the mood for it.

Glad for this update

I've been out in the yard shoveling three cubic yards of something, in search of manual labor and ways to stop grinding my teeth. Good thing I'm not there. :)

Any sign of Ken Spaulding? Would be great to get his take on Roy's comments.

Thank you for doing this.

Home!

I did not see Ken Spaulding. Union County was in the baaaack. Greg and I got a chance to say hi and I saw Vicki Boyer. I also got a chance to hug Dan Blue, III. My friend Tiffany and I sat against the wall with the electrical outlets and acted all anti-social.

I think we had 15 delegates there...which was pretty good for our little old county.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Cooper and Spaulding

This is one of the maddening things about politics in general, and the NCDP in particular. If you're not the darling of the insiders, you don't count.

Roy Cooper was invited, as a member of the Council of State, to offer remarks. But as we all knew would happen, what got delivered was a campaign speech. Everyone knew it would happen, and it did. Even though Cooper hasn't announced that he's running, he's the presumed candidate.

As the only announced candidate for governor (now that I've pulled out), Ken Spaulding should have been invited to speak. The fact that he wasn't invited is both inappropriate and insulting. It's no wonder he chose not to attend.

Agreed

I just finished reading the comments that followed my previous remarks about auxiliaries and autonomy further down this page, and it sickened me, and reinforced why I refuse to even participate in this party; I'm not an insider so why waste my time.

Cooper might well make a fine governor, but his coronation as THE candidate, as you point out, is repulsive. The longer I stare at it the more I become convinced that both parties in this state, and probably all the others, are no more than an insider trading club to see who gets to have their cake and eat it too every other year.

Sickening.

_______________________________________________

"...the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be."

Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail

Only elected officials spoke

All of them gave campaign speeches. I obviously am a Roy Cooper supporter, but I'm obviously not an insider. I can understand your frustration over this, but it would have been very difficult to justify allowing Ken Spaulding (a candidate for 2016) a chance to speak without giving all of the candidates present who are running in 2014 a chance to speak. We would have been there for two days.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Okay

I'll give you that.

I should probably just go sit in a corner for a bit. This top down nonsense pushes all my buttons.

_______________________________________________

"...the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be."

Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail

I'll join you there

n/t

I'll join you, too

I like grassroots, bottom-up politics.

Besta é tu se você não viver nesse mundo
https://george.entenman.name

Funny thing is...

that's what Voller and his crowd claim to be. The rest of us (those who oppose them) are corporate Dems. I've never been called that before....lots of other things ;) but never a corporate Dem.

They may have been grassroots once, but when they took power and started ruling (I'm not using the word "leading" for a reason) top-down, they lost the right to refer to themselves as grassroots.

If y'all don't mind I'm not going to join you in the corner.....I'm thinkin' I'll just stir up some mess out here in the open.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Power to the NCDP?

Thank you so much for this, Betsy. I couldn't face the idea of going and went to MakerFaire instead, so I need your summary.

One question. You write: We are currently pulling resolutions that all appear to give power to the NCDP.

Could you tell me what these resolutions said? Is there an effort to make our party even more top-down? If so, how?

And by "pull", I assume you mean "removed and not voted on"?

Again, thanks!

Besta é tu se você não viver nesse mundo
https://george.entenman.name

Your request deserves more than a comment in reply.

There were two resolutions in particular that were controversial. One would have required auxiliary groups - that already have their own bylaws and grievance process - to follow the party's plan of organization. This was soundly defeated after debate.

The second would require that each county's strategic plan follow the state plan of organization. Chris Telesca, who was the author of this resolution even admitted that this was retaliation against Wake County Democratic Party. While a very large majority voted against this resolution, it was obvious Voller wanted this one to pass since instead of announcing the resolution had been defeated he turn to consult with Matt Hughes and the parliamentarian (I believe) before announcing it had been defeated.

I'm going to write a little more about these tomorrow. I'm exhausted from the early morning drive, convention, and drive home. All in all, though, it was a good day and I thought (from the outside looking in) most things went well.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Thanks, Betsy!

I hope we can keep power from being too top-down.

Get some sleep. Keep up the good work!

Besta é tu se você não viver nesse mundo
https://george.entenman.name

Glad this was defeated

A plan of organization that's good for Wake County might not be good for Madison County. We have a very diverse state.

And if a local organization didn't follow the NCDP's PoO. What would be the consequences? Would the state committee withhold funds to them?

Are you saying that we shouldn't have to follow the same rules?

Does your county want to secede from the NCDP?

Don't you think that a county strategic plan should be made in consultation with the members of the CEC like the POO requires? Or do you agree with the people - especially the one guy who is a board of advisors member of a non-profilt group - that non-profit groups should have more influence over a county party strategic plan than elected precinct officers?

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

I'm saying...

....a cookie cutter plan probably isn't going to work for everyone.

How hard is that for a Democrat to understand?

My county was the first

to draft a resolution calling for Voller's resignation.

It was largely ignored.

Why should counties fall in lockstep with the NCDP when the NCDP ignores their concerns?

Why should Democrats vote

for a chairman to have more power over counties and auxiliary groups through the POO when the chairman does not follow the POO in the first place. Many of us do not trust him. I think it showed on Saturday. We might not have thrown pies at him, but that doesn't mean we trust him.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

That was not a vote for the Chair to have more power...

...over counties and auxiliary groups.

How exactly does Randy Voller not follow the POO in general or specifically at that meeting?

I don't think anything of that sort showed on Saturday. I think the convention was making the best of a bad situation set up by a former NCDP staffer. Who books a convention on a high-school graduation weekend at the same site of the majority of that county's HS graduations?

Remember - this is the same guy who scheduled the District Conventions the same day as the last day of Early Voting. We were able to change the district convention date, but unfortunately we were not able to back out of the contract with the convention center on that date without eating the whole fee.

Makes me wonder what other time bombs that former staffer planted out there that will go off in the future?

You don't seem to understand that a county party is somewhat obligated or under the authority of the party apparatus the next level up. The precincts have to follow the rules set by the county party. NCDP has to follow the rules set forth by the DNC. So why shouldn't the counties have to follow the guidance of the state party?

Some of the auxiliary folks talked about how they are parts of national groups, and there might be a conflict with those national groups if they were required to follow the POO. Fine - if you want to resolve that conflict, give up your seat on the NCDP Executive Council if you don't want to follow the POO!

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Chris if it is called for

in the plan of organization...why pass a resolution on it? Union County's strategic plan is something we've all worked on and we discuss pretty much everything at our CEC meetings. We don't need a resolution telling us to follow something we already follow.

That's like those jackasses in the legislature passing an amendment to North Carolina's constitution on something that was already against the law.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

because the POO sometimes isn't specific enough...

...and has enough loopholes to drive a fleet of trucks through.

Glad you have a strategic plan in Union. We haven't had a strategic plan submitted or voted on in Wake since 2008. The Chairs we've had since then just haven't gotten around to it.

And we already know the POO has a great deal of ambiguity and conflict in it. We are re-writing it to clean it up. My resolution was just a call to re-write the part of the POO that deals with strategic plans so that the county Chair won't "write" the strategic plan on the fly, and take his/her marching orders from big money donors who might want the Chair to hire certain political operatives and/or use certain services without competitive bidding at the last minute so that we appear to have little to no choice other than do what the Chair decides.

Of course the funniest part of the whole process was someone the statements of a big cheese in one of those non-profits that was allowed to call the shots with the Wake Dems. He claimed that it's tough enough to raise money after Citizens United so why tie the hands of the Party? That made no sense to me - he's claiming that we have to be able to sell out to our own special band of big money donors in order to compete with the big money donors to the Republican Party?

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

If it is being rewritten

no need for a resolution. Make it say what it needs to say.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

a resolution will help guide the re-write

sort of like a resolution calling for the elimination of the death penalty.

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Not how it works

the people spoke on this resolution and THAT should guide the rewriting of the POO.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

"NCDP has to follow the rules set forth by the DNC."

That statement alone is enough to make many left leaning, otherwise "good democrats" run the other way.

Screw all that top down bullshit. Top down control is one of the biggest reasons why so many are apathetic about the process now anyway; second only to money in general.

Fuck it, I'm changing my registration back to unaffiliated. I don't want to be associate with either of these soviet style organizations. All we need now is a good old fashioned purge!

_______________________________________________

"...the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be."

Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail

Don't change your registration

We're going to need your help with the purge!



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Betsy isn't telling you the whole story.

Some of our auxiliary organizations have by-laws that claim they don't have to follow the NCDP Plan of Organization. Meaning they can do whatever they want to - they don't even have to support our party platform.

Of course I've always thought it very odd that a group that has a vote on the Executive Council by virtue of their auxiliary status claims it can do whatever it wants to. Meaning it can vote to influence what the party does but can do whatever it wants to do.

Let's say - for example - that after resolutions work their way up from precincts through county and district conventions winning by majority votes, that NCDP Platform supports Collective Bargaining. And for whatever reason, a few of the auxiliary groups decide they don't want to support Collective Bargaining. And they actively take a role in trying to defeat Collective Bargaining because some of the leaders of the group decide that working to defeat collective bargaining might advance their own personal agendas?

After all, shouldn't "auxiliary groups" be a group that assists or functions in a supporting capacity. It's not about building up the resumes of the individual leaders of the group.

If an auxiliary group decides they don't want assist the NCDP in a supporting capacity with the constituencies they represent, should they really have a vote on the Executive Council?

I wasn't buying that one argument that College Dems made about being required to violate student privacy laws. Nothing in the POO requires the NCDP to violate state or federal laws. Although there were a bunch of consultants who expected former NCDP Chair David Parker to violate both state and federal employment privacy laws by disclosing a confidential employment agreement citing the primacy of the NCDP POO.

Some people want to have things both ways when it suits them.

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Another resolution

soundly defeated by Democrats at the convention.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

my resolution was approved by the Wake Dems...

...and at least the 13th District in 2013. It wasn't supposed to be in the 2013 resolutions packet. Not sure how it got there.

But I am sure that with all the undue influence that special interest groups have - especially after "Citizens United" - that resolutions like mine will continue to come back until it gets passed. Or otherwise become part of our party policy.

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Well...a majority of the rest of the counties

did not approve it.

I know of no county Democratic party that has been unduly influenced by special interests. We sustain our operations on small donations. We do not have to be dictated to by Wake County or Randy Voller to continue doing so.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Funny thing - early in the meeting a majority...

...of the counties DID approve it. When someone wanted it pulled, it barely got the 10% required to pull it. Meaning that nearly 90% of people DID want it included in the resolutions that passed. Had we voted on it RIGHT then and there, it would have passed.

But hours later, when many people had obviously left the meeting, it didn't pass.

Wake approved it in 2013, and so did the 13th Congressional District in 2013. So it's policy in Wake County, but there's no way to file a petition to redress this grievance under the POO because the POO doesn't address officers selling out to outside influence or waiting till the last possible minute to announce election strategies no matter how many of their precinct Chairs are inconvenienced by it.

Maybe you don't know of any counties being unduly influenced by special interests because you don't look for it? The counties that are influenced certainly won't admit it.

And if you are already following the POO and having your CEC vote on your strategic plan, what harm would it do to tighten up the POO to remove loopholes which allow other parties that don't follow the POO to continue to do so? What's wrong with providing a little more guidance for them to follow the POO and at the same time respect the will of the CEC members of those counties by removing the temptations for ambitious Chairs to be influenced by those special interests?

What prevents a county party Chair from allowing special interests to buy influence? From allowing special interests to tell a county party Chair what consultants to hire or what vendors to use without putting that out for competitive bidding? If it's not a violation of the POO, how can you remove a Chair for selling out like that?

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Betsy - I never said that.

I never said that my resolution was in retaliation against the Wake County Democratic Party. Please retract that statement.

I said that the resolution was written in response to some things that happened in the Wake County Democratic Party that were in violation of the NCDP Plan of Organization that were not every "democratic" or Democratic. Often, resolutions are written to right some wrong that people see, whether it's in government or in our party.

We have a Plan of Organization that too few people (party officers or staffers, elected public officials, or political operatives) read, understand or follow.

My resolution was entitled "Resolution requiring County Strategic Plans are made following the NCDP Plan of Organization". And I wonder how it ended up in that pile of resolutions.

The resolution passed in my precinct, at the Wake Dems County Convention in April 2013 and at least at the 13th Congressional District in May 2013. It got killed off due to some procedural trickery at the early August 2013 Resolutions and Platform Committee meeting held prior to the mid August 2013 SEC meeting. We never got to consider resolutions at either the mid August 2013 or early February 2014 SEC meeting, and it was not a resolution that was considered either by Wake County or by the 13th Congressional District. There was no indication where the resolution might have come from during the 2014 resolutions process. So I have no idea how it ended up in the packet of resolutions from both 2013 and 2014.

But the resolution was written for a very good reason - we have too many individuals and groups that aren't part of the Democratic Party at any level that have way too much influence on the Party. From professional political operatives who profit from the process, to 501c3/4 groups, to PACs and SuperPACs, and even rich individual donors. And far too often in my experience here in Wake County, we have had elected party officers who listen to those outside groups and individuals more so then the offices and delegates of our own party.

So here is a history of the things that happened in Wake County that led up to the crafting of that resolution.

Our former county party Chair decided on his own to spend nearly $40K on the production of a mailer for the October 2009 election - that was half the money in the county party treasury at the time. The production and distribution of the mailer that was funneled through one particular political consultant without any bidding for the work. The mailer was sent out late with a very big typo - it was for the "Board of Election" race - not the actual "Board of Education" race. At the next Wake Dems Board meeting, the board members were upset at both the mistakes made and the fact that the Chair decided to spend HALF the amount of money in the treasury WITHOUT consulting the rest of the board.

That same Chair virtually handed over the strategic planning process for the Wake County Democratic Party to an NCDP Regional Field Director who used to work for OFA in 2008. Part of that reason might have been because he decided at virtually the last minute to run for elected public office, so it appeared that he wasn't going to be able to devote his time to the overall county party strategy - especially fundraising. We were pretty much broke all year long. So in addition to blowing through half our money in 2009, he wasn't raising enough for us to really be more autonomous in 2010 and beyond.

That former Chair was also telling us that he was going to recommend another person to be the next Chair - someone who wasn't even a party officer at the time. Since 2010, Wake Dems have been having our Chairs resign from office before their terms were out, and recommend their own successor, which sort of denies other folks from deciding to run for office themselves and have the time to build up support from fellow Democrats. So when this new Chair came in in late 2010, he wasn't held accountable for the 2010 defeat.

Active Dems didn't like the way that the former Chair ceded his control over our strategic planning to the RFD, so we told the new Chair that we wanted to do our own planning from now on. He was a little more than tone-deaf when he invited that same RFD to the January 2011 CEC meeting to make a big presentation where we were informed that the 2010 coordinated campaign was a big success and that some folks felt we should do it again in the future. Many folks didn't like the sound of that, so when we had our new county party elections, the new board voted in the majority to create our own GOTV committee to decide our GOTV strategy for the future.

What we didn't know at the time was that the new County Party Chair had been working with a group of people largely from outside the party (few were officers of the party who would have a vote on the board or on the CEC) to create a staff of political operatives pretty much paid for by donations from the usual suspects: inside the beltline country-club Dems. The Chair pretty much ignored the motion to create a GOTV committee and decided to hire the former NCDP/OFA RFD as the top-dog for the new coordinated campaign. And he told me to my face that we would have to stop doing ANY party building until AFTER the 2011 school board race. Of course as soon as the 2011 elections were over with, that Chair resigned from office - and named his own successor: our current Wake County Democratic Party Chair.

During the May 2012 Primary elections, members of outside non-profit groups were telling our county party how to staff precinct polling places. And senior county party officers and staff were taking unilateral punitive actions based on the word of non-profit staffers. Meaning there was no petition or hearings before deciding to remove elected party officers and delegates from positions of responsibility. No one had a chance to defend themselves against the accusations of these non-party members. Should a county party chair remove an elected precinct Chair from their position based on a complaint from a member of an non-profit group without a hearing - especially when that has a direct bearing on the strategy of staffing polling places on Election Day? Could these decisions have been based on relationships between party officers and big money donors who were members of the non-profit group?

I am sure it's only a coincidence that one of the persons speaking against my resolution was at one time a prime mover and shaker in one of those outside the party non-profit groups. And is a current member of their board of advisors.

There are many people who are elected officers of the Wake County Democratic Party who wonder why our county party is failing to keep us all informed of what's going on. In 2008 I ran the Wake Dems GOTV operation. I worked 5.5 months as a volunteer, working with both the campaigns and our elected precinct officers - keeping all parties informed way in advance of election days. There was no last-minute, hyper-manic, seat of the pants, day before the election mess with the way we did things in 2008. But over the years, it's moved away from providing plenty of notice to people to waiting till virtually the last minute. And senior party leaders keep making excuses for it. We don't get enough notice from the county party about signs and slate cards, etc. And then we don't get enough slate cards and run out - unless some of us with experience decide to make our own. So why are we spending our own money making our own slate cards when the county party used to do that?

It might be because the county party is taking money from big donors that is earmarked to specific things that have little to nothing to do with actually winning elections and go instead towards hiring political operatives without any competitive bidding. Why spend $2000 on hiring a political operative who was already taking money from several other candidates during the 2013 election cycle and then do practically nothing to help the precincts with signs and slate cards as we have done for years before? Waiting till the last minute in 2013 really pissed off a lot of precinct Chairs!

And for this May 2014 primary election, I was getting TONS of calls from fellow precinct Chairs and other active Dems the day BEFORE the election wondering why they had not heard from the Wake County Democratic Party about signs, slate cards, or even poll greeter coordination. It could have been because a great plan for District Coordinators had been screwed-up in implementation over the years to the point where precincts with no District Coordinators assigned to them had no contact from the County Party.

And no one on the CEC has any say in the Hagan campaign deciding to run their so-called "Coordinated Campaign" through the Wake County Democratic party instead of the NCDP. I didn't find out about it until a month after the decision had been made. I have a lot of questions about that decision that have gone unanswered.

Surely the decision to run Kay Hagan's statewide campaign through the Wake County Democratic Party is a strategic decision that CEC members should have been consulted on and should have been able to vote on.

OFA backed out of NC in 2012 when it looked like Obama wouldn't win here - so that OFA could redirect their efforts to other states. What happens if in September, it doesn't look like Hagan could possibly win - and her DSCC and other backers pull out? Will Wake County be responsible for building leases, equipment costs, and employee payroll & benefits?

What happens if this is challenged by the SBOE - who pays the legal fees?

This stuff is all part of the strategic planning that CEC members should be able to consider, debate and vote on well before the actual decisions are made.

And once votes are taken to do things a certain way, senior county party officers shouldn't feel like they can do whatever the hell they want and violate whatever agreement was voted on simply because their big money donors or other special interests tell them to do so.

My resolution dealt directly with those things and more. Why would anyone who claims to want to be more "democratic" or "Democratic" vote against that resolution in favor of oligarchy or rule by a privileged elite (inside the Beltline country-club Dems)?

I remember asking the Durham County delegate exactly what her problem was with my resolution, and if she had any constructive amendments to make to it. She said it needed to be changed, but had no suggestions for changes. Let's face it - some folks don't believe in being held accountable to the folks who vote for them. They like being elected to office telling folks one thing and then doing whatever they want once elected.

Do we really want our party to be run that way at any level?

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

I will check with Greg Flynn

I'm happy to retract it if I am wrong, but I'm fairly certain I heard you admit that it was in retaliation to what happened in Wake county. You may call it a response but your words and temperament speak to your intent better than anything I might say.

The good thing is, very few people stood in support of that resolution and it was soundly defeated.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

depends on what time of day you measured the support.

When the resolution was first pulled, the resolution barely got the 10% support that would allow it to be pulled.

HOURS later, when people were tired of dealing with everything, people just wanted to go home.

Why shouldn't someone who objects to special interests trying to control the Wake County Democratic Party introduce a resolution to force the Wake Dems to wean themselves from that special interest control - no matter how nice the people are who are trying to control the Wake Dems?

Go ask Greg Flynn - and ask him if he's still a member of one of those special interest groups that has sought to have way more influence over the Wake Dems than elected party officers have. There is nothing wrong with being someone who cares and making donations, but when you try and subvert the democratic process and your checks carry more weight than the votes of CEC members, and eventually the CEC doesn't get to vote on strategic plans, and you just end up doing whatever the Chair wants to do to keep the big donations coming in - you don't have democracy.

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Since this resolution was one of the first covered

people knew what it said, and if anyone who left early truly deemed it important....they would not have left. They would have stayed to support it. We stayed an hour longer than planned in order to help defeat it.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

delusional!

many people left because there was no food to eat in the building, or because they may have had other family obligations to deal with. That's what happens when you are so clueless that you schedule a state party convention on the same weekend as high school graduations held around the state, and in the same building that is used for nearly ALL Wake County HS graduations. And in a room twice as big as was needed!

As I have said before - either incompetence or sabotage! Wonder what other hidden land mines he left us!

I didn't even know the resolution was going to be included in the packet because it didn't make it out of the state-level committee in 2013. I have already sent Matt Hughes an e-mail asking how it came to be included.

I didn't check the resolutions packet until that morning because I didn't submit any resolutions this year.

And you didn't stay an hour longer to help defeat it - unless of course you feel it's necessary to defend special interest groups being able to buy influence in the Democratic Party at the county level.

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Why such an obsession with the former employee?

Time for you to get over that one.

Randy Voller said the RSVPs from the robocall indicated the room would be full and that is why it was set up for so many. Maybe if Voller hadn't acted in a way that alienated so many of us, there would have been a larger crowd at the convention hall.

Voller also used that robocall to give us advance notice to eat a hearty breakfast. Any adult with advance notice can handle sitting five or six hours without food. Those with health issues could have kept a snack in a pocket or handbag and eaten it discretely. The food police were not patrolling the room frisking people.

The graduations caused zero problems for those attending the convention from Union County. I imagine that was the case for the vast majority of people who did not wait until the last minute to arrive at the convention center. Once in the ballroom it was as if we were the only people in the building. We neither saw nor heard the graduates, family, or friends.

Oh...and I'm not delusional...I just don't agree with you.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

funny thing - can't reply to your other posts

on the need for a resolution helping out with state party finances.

Got a problem with people who don't agree with you? If so, you shouldn't be moderating a blog like this one!

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

I haven't done anything Chris

Try again.

Which comments are you having difficulty responding to? I see the reply links at the end of each comment.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Not just one former employee

Just the former employees that weren't doing a good job working for the NCDP. If they wanted to work on behalf of one single candidate, let them get a job working for that candidate and stop sabotaging our party.

I believe that just like yesterday's convention, we'll be dealing with landmines from that former employee - and perhaps others - for quite some time.

We had one former NCDP employee a few years ago who screwed us for years in advance after his tenure was over by signing a 5-year contract for a very expensive convention facility in the western part of the state. We'd have to pay the money even if we didn't hold the event - so we were sort of obligated to hold the event there. Even though we could have held the event someplace else for less money out of pocket and more profit (in terms of fundraising) for the Party. Luckily, that contract has expired.

That same employee paid out over $10K to cover expenses for Bev Perdue - including paying out money to cover business-class tickets for her millionaire husband and an upgrade from coach to business class so she could sit with him (as if he couldn't afford it himself).

I believe that officers of the NCDP have a vested interest in making sure our party staffers act in a way that doesn't cost our party any more money than absolutely necessary.

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Thanks for the reporting

Glad to see the auxiliaries remaining autonomous. That resolution wasn't very, um, Democratic.

And when we take it all back in 2018 I sincerely hope we will have learned our lesson and will do away with ALL gerrymandering (another very undemocratic practice).

Again, thanks for the updates!

_______________________________________________

"...the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be."

Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail

I agree!

I was very happy to see the auxiliary groups remaining independent. This resolution probably caused me the most concern.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

Why should auxiliaries have a seat on the NCDP Exec Council...

...if they don't have to follow the NCDP POO?

Next thing you know, you'll be expecting us to let Greens and Republicans have a seat on the NCDP Executive Council and be able to tell the NCDP how to operate.

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Oh...and this is seriously going to happen?

Why did you and Voller want to bring everyone under the umbrella of the POO if it was going to be changed to God knows what after the convention?



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

he wanted then under the umbrella of the POO

so that when it was changed they'd still be under the umbrella. Even though the rules are re-written, all the counties and auxiliaries should follow the rules, right?

Some of those auxiliaries don't follow the POO even though they sit on the Exec Council. Why should they have a vote if they don't want to follow the rules?

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Only someone with something to hide

or someone who was up to no good, would try to take control of counties and auxiliaries by bringing them under the POO BEFORE he rewrites the POO.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.

I can smell the desperation from here!

My resolution was from LAST year (2013) and it didn't make it out of the State Resolutions and Platform Committee meeting last August.

So not sure exactly how or why Mr. Hughes included that resolution in this year's packet which included resolutions from last year's state resolutions committee and those which passed this year's precinct/county and district level conventions. I didn't re-submit it, so it's a mystery to me where it came from - unless you are somehow including Matt Hughes in a conspiracy with Randy Voller to take control of the Democratic Party Randy was elected to be Chair of.

But it's odd that you claim that insisting county parties and auxiliaries follow the POO is trying to take control of those groups. I could ask why any of those groups feel they shouldn't be governed by the POO and be considered part of the Party in the first place? Why should the elected Chair or President of an Auxiliary have a vote on the NCDP Executive Council or their county party boards if they don't want to follow the POO?

One could ask what these auxiliaries are trying to hide or what their agenda is if they want to vote in the party but not be governed by our rules?

And Randy isn't re-writing the POO. The SEC voted to re-write the POO years ago under Chairman Parker. How low will you go trying to blame everything on Randy Voller?

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

How low will you go trying to blame everything on Randy Voller?

How long will it take for you to realize he can't lead the NCDP?

he is leading the NCDP

he won the election - but some people who don't like the results of that election are doing everything they can to block his leadership, or cause problems where there aren't any. Or make mountains out of molehills.

You guys have been bitching about Voller since before he won the election.

Chris Telesca
Wake County Verified Voting
http://noirvnc.blogspot.com
http://statewideirvnc.blogspot.com

Really....?

...that's the same thing my "conservative" acquaintances tell me about the Governor.

Thanks, Besty. Good summary.

I wanted to speak about the trading transaction tax but could not get to the mic in time. For some reason I can't fathom, the resolution that passed our precinct didn't make it to the state. It was the Robinhood tax resolution. It was way more thought out than the one we were trying to pass. We don't need to reinvent the wheel here, we just need to support Rep. Keith Ellison's bill.

Here is a version of that resolution
http://www.dclabor.org/ht/a/GetDocumentAction/i/104218

Progressives are the true conservatives.

Support for Reasonable Regulation of State and Local Parties

Looking at the resolutions, I'm intrigued by the one entitled "Support for Reasonable Regulation of State and Local Parties".

The whereas clauses talk about laws that do such things as "... hinder state and local parties from effectively participating in the political process" and that make it harder for parties and candidates to cooperate.

It then resolves:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the North Carolina Democratic Party endorses the recommendations put forth in the ASDC Committee on Campaign Finance Reform report entitled “Legislative Recommendations for Campaign Finance Reform.”

I'm curious about the whereas clauses and would like more details because that might help me understand why our party seems so ineffectual and why candidates so often seem to ignore us.

But here's the strangest thing: When I googled the phrase ASDC “Legislative Recommendations for Campaign Finance Reform.” I found only six results, all in resolutions from NC and a couple of other states.

Does anyone know what this is about? Assuming that this resolution was passed, what did delegates vote for?

Besta é tu se você não viver nesse mundo
https://george.entenman.name

D Day and Omaha Beach veteran: P. R. Latta of Raleigh

Somewhere in all this reporting from the Convention I think I read that a WWII vet was recognized. As P. R. Latta has been recognized for years for his loyal efforts to the Party, I am glad that his contributions on D Day were noted to those in Raleigh on Saturday. P. R. will talk to you privately about his experience, but he rarely talks in public about them, as he feels we glorify war too much, and he does not want to participate in that aspect.

I confirmed in a phone call to him today that he was the person recognized briefly by Randy Voller.

Martha Brock

Thank you Martha

Things were moving at a very fast clip and I thought I heard the last name, but didn't want to write it wrong. I didn't see it in any other reporting or I would have updated. I really appreciate you bringing it here.



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Vote Democratic, the ass you save may be your own.