Building the Movement: 2016 Iowa State Democratic Convention

Progressive Movement wins big moments and sets the tone for the future Democratic Party at State Convention.

This past Saturday (and Sunday AM!), June 18th was the 2016 Iowa Democratic State Convention in Des Moines, IA. Thousands of Clinton and Bernie delegates from all 99 counties joined forces to elect delegates to go to National Convention to decide who will be the Presidential nominee, decide on a platform of issues that Democrats stand for and against, and to elect people to positions within the Iowa Democratic Party.

CCI Action members who attended as delegates were there connecting with like-minded social justice fighters and ensuring progressive platform planks like a $15/hr minimum wage were added to the Iowa Democratic State Platform. The platform is the guiding body of the Democratic party where statements of support and opposition lay out the values of Iowa Democrats.

The 2016 State Convention was expected to be a heated race, with the delegate count between Democratic Presidential Nominees Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton separated by only 4 delegates.

Clinton came into the day with 704 pledged delegates and Sanders trailing by an inch with 700 pledged delegates. These numbers were a result of Iowa’s February 1st Caucus night in which Clinton gained 23 National pledged delegates while Sanders only earned 21 despite a small percentage difference. The number of National delegates for each candidate did not change throughout the day.

Delegates spent the morning participating in minority caucus meetings and electing a Chair and Vice Chair for each committee to become a member of the Iowa State Central Committee, a group that works directly with the Democratic party for the next two years on goals and principles for legislation. Several new caucuses were approved by the general assembly including Women’s Caucus, Progressive Caucus, and Stonewall Caucus.

Delegates gathered together in the main arena of Hyvee Hall to review the rules for the day and hear from elected officials running for Congress and Senate races in November. Delegates broke out into candidate preference groups in the early afternoon to choose nominees for the remaining National delegate positions, strategize on platform planks, and mingle with one another – and dance!

Just after 8pm, Clinton and Sanders delegates rejoined the general assembly to vote on the final open seats for National Convention positions and to amend and ratify the state platform. Overall, the platform was very progressive and laid out guiding principles that put people and planet first.

Some of the most exciting amendments to the platform include:

-A platform plank supporting at least a $15 min wage, tied to CPI

-A platform that Iowa Democrats oppose superdelegates 

– A resolution recommending Iowa Democratic Party push the National DNC to abolish superdelegates

Perhaps, the most contentious moment of the evening was the lengthy debate on whether to support or oppose superdelegates. Coming into the convention the platform stated “We oppose superdelegates” with a minority report to change to ‘We support superdelegates” and a minority report to strike the plank all together from the platform. After 3 intense rounds of voting, opponents to superdelegates claimed victory and the plank remained untouched, stating that Iowa officially opposes superdelegates. At the end of the evening, delegates also approved a resolution to recommend that the DNC officially get rid of the superdelegate position.

It’s clear that Iowans are fired up to build a political revolution to change business as usual politics.  CCI Action members are committed to holding our elected officials accountable to govern as they campaigned and passing progressive policies that put People & Planet before corporate greed.

 

Join us: 2016 Statewide Convention

 

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People-powered movements are gaining steam and making real and necessary progress across the country…We need more of that in Iowa and that’s why we’re rethinking what’s politically possible. 

You’ll hear from doers and thinkers from around the nation and get plugged into what’s ahead for us to be unstoppable.

 

Register TODAY!

 

 

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