By Andrea Beth Damsky, CDP Resolutions Committee Member & PZC Executive Board Vice Chair
The CDP’s Spring meeting was cancelled due to the pandemic, so the Resolutions Committee had a large docket of 100 resolutions to consider this month! We also reviewed ballot measures, as we do preceding every election. Ever wonder how the California Democratic Party comes to endorse ballot measures? Well, first they are brought to the Resolutions Committee; if we recommend them, then the Executive Board votes to approve our recommendation, and voila! Endorsements on your ballot!
5 hours were scheduled for all this work, with an optional 2 hours if needed. It took us twice as long to get through everything! We had a 1-hour Committee pre-meeting, 3 hours of ballot measures, an hour to start looking at which resolutions needed further discussion, and then a 1-hour break for the General Session. After that, we worked through 7 hours of resolution testimony, discussion, rewriting, and voting. All of this was done on zoom, which enabled us to safely distance and still meet from all over the state. The best benefit was that we were able to assure that voting was done only by committee members and not muddied by enthusiastic resolution authors and their supporters, this had been a difficult problem in previous, in-person meetings.
The Committee approved many resolutions motivated by the Black Lives Matter movement and the murder of George Floyd. These focused on racial justice, criminal justice reform, revisioning police funding, and refusing donations from the prison for profit industry.
Our Committee co-chairs are committed to approving resolutions which are not inflammatory in nature, and work with the authors in wordsmithing affirmative statements of Democratic Party principles. As a result, several resolutions regarding Israel and Palestine that ran counter to previous CADEM resolutions and its current platform were edited accordingly, much to the disgruntlement of the authors. PZC submitted 3 resolutions all of which were approved and adopted without any hiccups:
- Condemning Anti-Semitism and Misinformation of “Deadly Exchange”
- Affirming the need for Israeli and Palestinian leaders to return to direct mutual negotiations to discuss peace, refugee rights and final borders
- Affirming Support for Negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians, Towards Achieving a Two State Solution
The Resolutions Committee will meet again in November, at the next Executive Board Meeting of the California Democratic Party. Hopefully by then, we will have vote-by-mail election results for a new US President!