A couple of weeks ago, I received an e-mail from Tom Hughes at Democracy for America, calling on DFA members to become delegates for the Democratic National Convention, to be held next August 25-28 in Denver, CO. From the email:
Delegates participate in developing the national platform, and help chart a new direction for America and the Democratic Party. Let’s make sure our progressive voices are heard.[…] Want another reason to go? This is going to be one heck of a party. This is our chance to thank Governor Dean for his leadership. Our chance to make sure the Democratic nominee never forgets the success of the 50 State Strategy, grassroots organizing, and people-powered campaigns. This is our chance to keep moving the party forward.
More below the fold.
Who’s that guy in the picture?
So why become a delegate? Isn’t the convention a tightly scripted TV show starring a select few prominent politicians and several thousand extras wearing funny hats? True, but aside from the ritual that the nomination portion of the convention has become, delegates also participate in developing the party’s platform AND get to network with other activists from around the country. Not to mention that on the (admittedly remote) chance that there is a brokered convention, delegates would help make history by deciding the nominee.
I don’t believe it necessarily makes sense to organize a bloggers contingent per se here in Missouri. We have quite a few political bloggers around the state, but we aren’t as tightly knit as the folks in Massachusetts, and I don’t really see a lot of ideological cohesiveness, either. What interests me more is opening up the delegate selection process. In one of my first posts on this site, I quoted internet activist Matt Stoller:
Civic participation is a key tenet of how we built our media and political apparatus. We are demanding low barriers to entry in the political system, a way for everyone to participate, and more open cultural structures, including business, agriculture, and government.
I don’t have any firsthand experience with the delegate selection process, and I’ve only heard a few accounts from friends and acquaintances about their own. You don’t see newspaper accounts or reports on the local news about the caucuses that select the delegates, either. The best way to cover it is to do it yourself. So for the next several months, I’ll be familiarizing myself with the Missouri delegate selection rules in preparation for the county conventions next spring. I’ll be blogging about it to ask for your support and report what I found. I hope that more than a few of you will join me.