Friday, November 11, 2016

Bernie Sanders Endorses Keith Ellison for DNC Chair


Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Keith Ellison. Alex Wong via Getty Images (source)

by Gaius Publius

The fight for the soul of the Democratic Party continues, as does the Sanders revolution. Next up, who will be the new DNC Chair, Sanders-endorsed progressive Keith Ellison or some Clintonist?

Zach Carter and Sam Stein at the Huffington Post:
Congressman Keith Ellison Wants To Run The DNC

It would be a major shift in approach, and a major contrast with Donald Trump.

Rep. Keith Ellison, a leading progressive voice in Congress and one of only two Muslim Americans in the House of Representatives, has his eyes on becoming the next chair of the Democratic National Committee.

The Minnesota Democrat has been planning a run for weeks, and has begun informally talking to other party lawmakers and insiders about his prospects for the post, several sources have told The Huffington Post.

His name was floated as a possible DNC chair by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on Thursday morning, giving him the type of institutional progressive support that would make his candidacy formidable., a major progressive network, also said in a statement that Ellison would be “an excellent DNC chair.”

Ellison’s identity as a black man and the first Muslim member of Congress would serve as a symbolic rebuke to President-elect Donald Trump. And his ties to Sanders would give him credibility in the progressive community that feels the party has catered too much to elite interests. He is also regarded as a savvy television presence ― which seems likely to be a major requirement for the job in the age when Democrats are out of power in every branch of government.
That Sanders endorsement:
Sanders gave voice to the frustration among many liberals in the aftermath of Trump's stunning triumph over Hillary Clinton. He told The Associated Press in a phone interview that millions of working-class voters' decision to back Trump was "an embarrassment" to the party and that Democrats must take a strong stand against the role of corporate interests in politics.

"It is an embarrassment, I think, to the entire of Democratic Party that millions of white working-class people decided to vote for Mr. Trump, which suggests that the Democratic message of standing up for working people no longer holds much sway among workers in this country," Sanders said....

He said he would support Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota to become the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee.
The battle lines are drawn. Sanders-supporting Keith Ellison? Or some Clintonist?
The fight for the soul of the Democratic Party continues. The next few months may set in cement for a generation the reputation of the Party in the eyes of Sanders supporters who would not pull the lever for Clinton.

I can't wait to see what the Party will tell us, in light of the latest wreckage, who they want to be. Choose carefully, Democrats, is my own best advice. You may not get too many bites at this apple.


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At 10:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see that Schumer ALSO endorses Ellison. VERY fishy!

John Puma

At 10:53 AM, Blogger The Match said...

I was open to Ellison until Schumer endorsed him.

At 11:10 AM, Blogger jvb2718 said...

Contrary to what seems to be the presumptive reaction, I will become MORE skeptical of anyone endorsed by the quisling sanders.

And, yeah, Ellison is a lobbyist... which I suppose is the only reason he has a chance of being the DNC head.

Schumer's endorsement seals the deal. If Ellison wins, the DNC won't change in any meaningful way. They'll still be the primary democrat party body whoring for money.

And it isn't the WORDS of the democrats that the working caste(s) hate. It's the DEEDS (and lack of same). One can only get kicked in the nads so many times before one recoils from the sight of the kicker... even if the kicker says nice things.

Let the DNC die of its own accord. Fuck them all.

I'm voting Green from now on. I figure maybe 4 more prez cycles before I'm gone. So I won't live to see any meaningful change. But maybe my grandchildren will live long enough to see a real left party some day... or to see the planet denuded by 15 billion humans and all that entails (pollution, warming, war...)

At 3:54 PM, Anonymous ap215 said...

He would be a very good choice for the DNC & progressives in general he's smart, wants to ban corporate money, he'd be a huge uplift & voice the party & the base desperately needs i wish him luck in the voting process on March 2017.

At 5:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to know more about Ellison. Yes, it is suspicious that Schemer endorses him, but so does Bernie. Some middle ground here perhaps? And please stop with the Bernie bashing - he is an honorable man and saw the light to attempt to stop Trump. He cared less about himself than the big picture. Not many politicians are like that. That is admirable!! And you third party voters, you care more about taking the high moral ground than reality. Don't you ever read Noam Chomsky? Do you really think your vote for Jill Stein gave the Democratic party a "message"? It actually might have affected Hillary in a few states.

At 6:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bernie was not honorable. After running on "principle", he decided it was all about himself and gave an illusory performance of "getting something" from $hillbillary in return for taking a dive instead of continuing a principled run as a green or independent.

When reality keeps kicking you in the balls, wouldn't you try to change it? Or are you the Charlie Brown who keeps affirming those who are doing the kicking?

I can only vote the way I think is right. I cannot, evidently, make imbeciles understand that MOS means your balls keep getting pummeled. Wear a cup at least.

And, no, democraps scapegoated Nader but still did nothing to fix themselves -- getting much worse in fact. So I doubt they'll digest the Stein and Johnson numbers and fix themselves now either.

At 6:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I heard from two members of my state's DNC delegation about this. They both like Ellison, think he would have promise as DNC chair, and are open to his candidacy -- but NOT if he continues to hold his House seat.

Their rationale is that we are out of power now, and the job of party-building requires the time and effort of a full-time organizer. That jibes with my personal experience. The best DNC chair I ever worked with was Howard Dean, who did more to build the party from the ground up than I have seen since.

Both these committeemen made an important distinction. When the president is a Democrat, DNC chair is a presidential appointment. When the president is not a Democrat, the DNC chair is elected. Based on recent history, I'd say that needs to be looked at. Obama's appointments were, and are, ghastly, shrieking incompetents. OFA was a personality-cult disaster that was geared to promoting Obama. We raised a lot of hell about that but we were ignored. Many party volunteers simply ignored OFA, because we knew it wasn't sustainable going forward once Obama was gone.

People will say "Dean? Fuck Dean, he's a pharma lobbyist now," and I say fine, get us someone who isn't, but I say also that this person MUST be able to do what Dean did. He put field organizers in places where the state parties, not some suit in DC, said they were needed -- as in the Latino Vote Project. He promoted PCO training and recruitment, and voter education everywhere. He impressed on us that we must be a bottom-up party and not a top-down one.

People tell me Dean and Bernie don't get along, and maybe that's right, because what do I know? I don't know how much Bernie knows about what Dean did, because he was an Independent then. I'm a strong Bernie supporter, and lacking more information, his endorsement of Ellison speaks well of Ellison. But I share my two national committeemens' insistence on a full-time organizer as our next DNC chair. I hope this is helpful.

At 10:15 AM, Blogger Gaius Publius said...

I heard from two members of my state's DNC delegation about this. They both like Ellison, think he would have promise as DNC chair, and are open to his candidacy -- but NOT if he continues to hold his House seat.

Just a comment on the point above.

This is a classic "new rule" just rolled out to defeat Ellison and bolster Dean, a lobbyist and a Clinton surrogate. DWS held her House seat while chairing the DNC and there was nary a peep from any of the people now complaining about Ellison.

This fight is the first salvo in the war that says, does the Clinton/Schumer/Obama contingent (the money contingent) still own and run the Party, or do the Sanders people take it over? After all, that's what the whole Sanders candidacy was about.

(BTW, support by Schumer for Ellison isn't a mark against Ellison, who is a solid progressive. It's an attempt by Schumer to defang opposition to his own rise to Leader. He's trying to paint himself with Ellison/Sanders cred ahead of a potential challenge.)

If the Clinton (money-beholden) part of the Party wins fights like these, the Dems will be neutered for a generation. On the other hand, winning these next battles is the next phase in the Sanders revolution, the attempt to make the Democratic Party worth voting for, to win back those Trump voters who would have voted for Sanders in a change election, if Sanders was the choice instead of Clinton.

As I see it, anyway.


At 4:34 PM, Blogger jvb2718 said...

To GP and factoring in the previous from Anon:

If the DNC head is elected, it's going to be another money whoring $hill. Simple. There are a plurality of those voting for their chancellor. period.

Dean may be a lobbyist now, but at least he laid down a 50-state strategy which $hillbillary flushed (and by doing so, lost the senate). Demographic volatility, if nothing else, demands a 50-state approach... unless the electoral college is done away with, which will not happen as long as money rules.

I suspect, but cannot confirm, that if the electoral college is trashed and the election is simple majority, then a lot of the 90M permanently disaffected may end up with someone to get behind, even if it's not labeled R or D. The downside to that is that a lot of small states will be ignored during campaigns... which isn't as bad as it once would have been what with the intertubes and mass media and all.

So... my conclusion is that the voters on the left won't ever have a D worth supporting (in a national election) ever again. So start pondering Green or Socialist. That's where you'll find less corrupt, less neocon, and less neoliberal candidates.

At 5:23 AM, Blogger jvb2718 said...

Another eloquent take on the whole thing, including the quisling sanders:

Anyone who thinks/hopes that the DNC will remake their party is delusional.


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