President Obama’s State of the Union address last month was the moment many Democrats were waiting for: a full- throated endorsement of liberal, Democratic ideas. The President showed where our country has made great strides in strengthening the economy, shrinking the deficit, boosting scientific research, and ending the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. But he also showed where we still have room for improvement. And of course, everyone was buzzing about Mr. Obama’s off-the-cuff jab at a group of heckling lawmakers: “I have no more campaigns to run...I know, because I won both of them.”
Following the rout from the 2014 midterm Congressional elections, Mr. Obama could have lurched to the right in order to pander to the smaller, more conservative electorate that showed up in November. Instead, he doubled down on progressive values with a new list of priorities he wants to work with the Congress to deliver on: free community college, tax credits for child care, paid sick leave, a free and open Internet, tax fairness, fighting climate change. With bold moves such as protecting immigrant children from deportation and taking the first step toward normalizing relations with Cuba, Mr. Obama is demonstrating that he will be no “lame duck.”
Still, though the President proclaimed that the “state of the union is strong,” it may not feel that way to many Americans. Since the beginning of Mr. Obama’s administration, the United States has regained the amount of jobs lost in the Great Recession. According to the White House, 11.2 million jobs have been created in the past five years. Yet, there are still millions more people looking for work, and for the majority of those who are working, wages remain stagnant. The Affordable Care Act has significantly reduced the number of uninsured Americans nationwide, and has halved the number of uninsured in California. But, experts say, 30 million Americans will remain uninsured, even after the ACA is fully implemented. And finally, as the recent protests against police brutality and the aftermath of the high-profile murders of two NYPD officers showed, America’s racial chasm still runs wide and deep.
As with any society, America remains an experiment, in constant need of update and repair. And, what is the state of the Culver City Democratic Club? That is what we will discuss at our February general meeting, as well as your thoughts about President Obama’s address. Let’s share ideas on what we can do to improve the Club. What topics would you like to see featured at future meetings? Should the Club take a more active role in grassroots activism? What ideas do you have to boost membership and/or fundraising? Are there any particular activities you’d like to see the Club do that hasn’t been done before or recently? Should the Club do some things differently? Come with your suggestions, and we’ll take notes. In addition, we will be voting on the positions of CCDC First Vice President and Correspondence Secretary for the 2015 Executive Board. The new Board will be installed at our annual luncheon on Feb. 22, which will also feature our special guest speaker, grassroots activist and women’s rights champion, Sandra Fluke. We will be presenting Ms. Fluke with the Democratic Activist of the Year Award, and former CCDC President Bill Wynn with the Trudy Cherness Democrat of the Year Award. We hope to see you there!
Come join the Culver City Democratic Club on Sunday February 22, 2015, when we will be holding our Annual Installation and Awards Luncheon at the Courtyard by Marriott. The 2015 Executive Board will be sworn in, and we will honor two Democrats whose work embodies our Party's values. Receiving the Democratic Activist of the Year Award is women's rights champion and progressive activist, Sandra Fluke, who will also be our keynote speaker. Receiving the Trudy Cherness Democrat of the Year Award is CCDC President Emeritus Bill Wynn. We are also planning a terrific raffle with fabulous prizes! The Lunch will be held from 11:00 AM to 2 PM on Sunday, February 22, at the Courtyard by Marriott, 6333 Bristol Parkway, Culver City.
Tickets are $40 per person ($45 at the door). The menu features, in addition to salad and Garlic Mashed Potatoes, your choice of Chicken Piccata or Grilled Vegetable Stack, and Double Chocolate Fudge Cake or Fruit Plate. Please purchase your ticket from the list of menu combinations. Parking is included in the ticket price. You can purchase tickets and sponsorships at our next General Meeting on Feb. 11, pay by mail, or you can pay online on our secure ActBlue page at https://secure.actblue.com/contribute/page/ccdclunch2015. To show your appreciation for ActBlue, consider adding a small tip if you pay online.
If you would like to make an additional contribution as an event sponsor, you can choose from four levels: Platinum ($200), Gold ($100), Silver ($50), or Bronze ($20). Your name will be listed in our Luncheon Program Book. IMPORTANT: The deadline to buy a sponsorship is Friday, Feb. 13, 2015. You can also purchase sponsorships online
At the Jan. 14 General Meeting, the membership held elections for the 2015 CCDC Executive Board. The following members were elected: President - Sylvia Moore Second Vice President - Amy Cherness Treasurer - Eric Fine Membership - Diane Rosenberg Recording Secretary - Pat Levinson Re: First Vice President and Correspondence Secretary elections - There were two members who presented themselves as candidates for the position of First Vice President. Khin Khin Gyi was nominated by the Nominating Committee. Current Correspondence Secretary Stephen Murray was nominated from the floor. There was a brief discussion about having a co-vice presidency, but no action on this was taken. Next, both Khin Khin Gyi and Stephen Murray gave one-minute statements to the body. A secret vote was held, with 31 ballots cast and 8 ballots invalid. Khin Khin Gyi received 12 votes and Stephen Murray received 11 votes. However, since about 40% of the ballots were invalid, and the vote was very close, the membership, by voice vote, decided to invalidate the election and hold another vote for First Vice President at the start of CCDC’s General Meeting on Feb. 11. So for now, the position of First Vice President will remain vacant until the next General Meeting. The election for 2015 Correspondence Secretary will also be held in February, and for now, Stephen Murray will continue in this position. Both candidates for First Vice President will submit written statements in the February newsletter. Per CCDC bylaws, the Nominating Chair at the February General Meeting will also ask for nominations from the floor for First Vice President and Correspondence Secretary. The candidates will again give one-minute statements to the body, after which, a secret vote will be held.
The Culver City Democratic Club has endorsed the following candidates for The Los Angeles Community College Board of Trustees. The election will be on March 3, 2015. The LACCCD has eliminated run-off elections this year.
Endorsements were made at the candidate forum hosted by the Democratic Club on January 14th. All candidates were invited. We thank candidates Andra Hoffman, Francesca Vega (both Seat 1), Mike Fong, Joyce Burrell Garcia (both Seat 7) and Sydney Kamlager (Seat 3) for attending. Candidates had to receive 2/3 of the vote from members to receive the Club endorsement.
LACC Board members are elected at-large, from all the voters in the District, for terms of four years. Elections are held every two years for alternating seats. The Board generally meets twice a month on Wednesday. More information on Board meetings agenda, schedule and location can be found on their website.