10 Years of Service in the Texas Democratic Party

I've been inside the Galveston County Democratic Party as a precinct chair for 10 years. I was also part of Battleground Texas for 3 years. I was responsible for county party communications for 5 years and promoted progressive ideas. I chaired the county party resolutions committee at three of the county conventions. I served on the state resolutions committee during one state convention.

On the other hand, the rules of the Texas Democratic Party limit party members relative to changing the county or state party. The only Democrats I get to vote for and elect to office within the Party are for County Chair and two members to the 62 member State Democratic Executive Committee. I have no influence over selection Party candidates for elected office. All candidates are volunteer. If progressives don't volunteer to run for office, I can't vote for them.

If I'm a delegate to the state convention, I do get to vote there and one of those votes is for the state Party Chair. Unfortunately, the incumbant party power brokers have significant control to make sure their Chair candidate is elected. We have a state chair that has remained in office for too many years despite our never ending loses in general elections during his service. Delegates to the convention should recognize this and vote for change, but it hasn't happened.

At the county and state levels, I do get to vote in either the Democratic or Republican primaries. If there is a contested race in the primary and a progressive has volunteered to run, I can vote for them in the primary. However, the state and national Parties tend to get involved during primaries and try to make sure progressives lose any contested election. In 2012, a local county effort got former Congressman Nick Lampson (10 years prior service as a Democrat), a moderate, to run again for Congress. I worked on his campaign and managed phone banking efforts in north county. Galveston county is the largest block of voters in this district. The national party took control of the campaign because Nick had high name recognition. However, he still lost. Galveston county, unlike other large metropolitan counties like Harris (Houston) is still 57% white, non-hispanic.

After the primary, even if a progressive is selected during the primary, they have little chance of winning the general election in this county or the state. Anytime Democratic voter participation increases in Texas, it is met and surpassed by Republican participants.

My current PC term will end in June and I did not reenlist for the next 2 year term. Ten years of trying has not made enough of a difference for me to continue. It's a lot of effort for a minority member of a minority party to make change happen and I don't have the energy to continue. We also have new leadership that I'm not compatible with.

I'm not an optimist like you, Thom. Ignoring today's weltschmerz is harder and harder to do.

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We have similar systemic problems in our crimson red state. The push for, in effect, one-party rule seems to be overcoming the federal government's ability through the courts and Congress to safeguard what little remains of representative democracy in these wastelands of hollow democracy. Thanks for your long service -- an uphill battle in the furtherance of democracy. Surviving as a good Democrat in Texas is no small feat.

Go Beto O'Rourke!

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I think Thom's advice about taking over local Democratic precincts is good, but would be effective mostly in blue or purple states. In red states it doesn't matter much what the party does.

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In raw numbers, it's America's equivalent to Ukraine's "red" areas minus the Ruskies and tanks. Higher COVID death rates in Trumpland than where the sane reside in blue areas is proof of criminal negligence to the nth degree. Of course, Trump's crimes against humanity are not in the same league as Putin's horrific war crimes in Ukraine, but the deliberate and unnecessary waste of life in both cases is the result of wicked behavior of malignant narcissists, who should be rotting in jail on Earth for life and in hell for eternity -- or, to cover all bases, whatever similar "timeframe" to cleanse the blackest of soul the laws of karma might dictate. (Unless the Overlords of the Universe decide it's hopeless and send their particles into the nearest black hole.)

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Support for DINO by Pelosi,

I just got a text from a progressive women of color running to replace a DINO and FBI person of interest. The national Democratic Party is supporting the conservative incumbant Democrat:


Charles, it's Jessica Cisneros. This is breaking news:

Nancy Pelosi just said that she's still supporting Henry Cuellar - even as he's in the midst of an FBI investigation. Now the establishment is rushing to Cuellar's side to stop our movement in its tracks.

Will you rush $27 right now? With the runoff election in just 61 days, this is the BEST time to make a contribution that will have the maximum impact.


I fight for progressive candidates by supporting the ones who volunteer to run for office and that doesn't require being a PC.

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I am going to say something some people will hate, I like the two party system. It isn't really just two, because the unaffiliated folks always determine the outcome these days. People can bitch all they want about closed primaries, but independents can choose a party for any given election and then get out.

What convinced me about a parliamentary system being just as bad as ours was watching the series called "Borgen"; it's Danish. What it demonstrates is how crazy and unethical the bargaining can get (behind closed doors) to form a majority.

I like how Thom expressed some satisfaction for the work accomplished by the Progressives....we're getting there. President Biden and Senator Sanders, a Dem and an independent are leading the way. 

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Yes, we're getting there. It's messy, but the Democratic Party is still the best bet for a more perfect union.

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Yup, those brain-dead trolls who "think" NATO is obsolete...

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Thom I suggest you get a handle on your brain dead trolls, they’re not helpful

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After all those paragraphs illustrating that The Democratic Party "has much to answer for," ie, it's rational to critisize, doggonit, Thom, you reflexively toss in the word "gratuitous!" Call me lots of things, but don't call me "gratuitous!" And, by the way, didn't Pat Buchanan admit he got a lot of Gore votes because of the misleading format of the ballots? Anybody wants to remind me wrong about that, fine. If the chips were down now, I guess I'd hold my nose, but really? Rotten carcass Manchin or Sinema? Grrr. Just don't call me "gratuitous."

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The US 2-party system in today's age of mega tech firms dominating all communication, and huge corporations owning almost all the media and using advertising and lobbying techniques that have been developed as war strategies by psychology experts many people do not believe the 2-party system can ever be trusted again. It's simply too easy to take over the leadership in either party.

A voting strategy of NEVER voting for an incumbent may hold some scope for cleaning house and limiting the time the 'lifers' are able to stay in state or federal legislative posts. However, long-term US political stability probably need to accept the risk of moving towards a multi-party system as all the stable country systems appear to have done.

It seems highly unlikely that a progressive cohort of politicians taking over the Democratic party will attract enough voters from the voting cohort that increasingly register as independent. Both parties have a significant voter block that leans towards a common sense Center, and paired with the independents we have a possibility of a 3rd party strategy some time in the future-BUT the time in between may be rough. In the meantime rural voters as well as voters in the Deep South will probably always feel alienated by the current format of urban progressiveness.

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How do we get there? Middle Earth is a mythical land populated by independents and moderates from both parties who mostly agree on all the big stuff. They will naturally band together and do the right thing when it really counts. Uh-huh. Although, it’s hard to stand on shifting ground that’s slipping into a sinkhole.

And that pesky piece of paper called the US Constitution impedes real reform by encasing a two-party system in cement. Unless the People break the Republican’s permanent blockade on common sense and come up with super majorities and rivers of wine, it’s not possible to pass amendments favorable to more parties closer to the People that can pass the finish line and share power in Congress, forming coalitions, etc., like a parliament. Getting money out of politics is the first imperative. Eliminating the filibuster, the Electoral College, and gerrymandering would be next.

That's the dream. But a political landscape considered middle ground just a few decades ago has shifted dramatically to the right of center. Despite relentless brainwashing though, corporate-sponsored policy concepts are still way out of line with most people’s progressive sentiments. The insane-clown horror show put on by a party out of touch with reality mortifies normal human beings. The most fascist elements in Whiteman Nation have commandeered the wingnut power machine, a wholly owned subsidiary of Wall Street funded by dark-money big-bucks. That is the enemy facing us right now, ruining our democracy, our economy, and our lives.

The Democratic Party certainly has its sins (minor in comparison!), but it’s trying to move in a progressive direction, albeit slowly and painfully. Meanwhile, the party of endless greed and unchecked power is dragging the world to the brink of destruction. (If only that was hyperbole.) It’s certainly true that the more parties sharing power, the harder it is for moneyed interests to corrupt them — meaning our two major parties are both corrupt as hell. But it’s false equivalency to conflate this sad truth to mean they share equal levels of corruption. And that makes all the difference.

Like a Ukrainian, you pick up the hunting rifle you already have, clean it up the best you can, and then fire the damn thing. That’s actual power, not pie in the sky. Ya work with what ya got. Otherwise, the enemy will overrun your position while you’re daydreaming about hot, syrupy pancakes at Mama’s house instead of cold, dry rations in a muddy foxhole. Sorry for the bad war metaphor, but these are the times we live in. Ukrainians fighting Russians and Americans fighting Republicans are struggling for the same high stakes: the survival of democracy itself.

“It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” - Yogi Berra

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Whenever I played in organized sports, the coaches ALWAYS stressed the fundamentals. Regardless of the basic skillsets, the good coaches would lead us to get better. The same holds true for our democracy, and the most fundamental of fundamentals are found in the answers to these two questions, “what is the purpose of our government?” and “what is the best way to meet that purpose?” If you ask 100 people those two questions, I suspect that you would get 100 different answers, and none of them would be the same as my opinion. Don’t you think that before we do anything more to cause our democracy’s backsliding, that we should at least agree on our government’s purpose? If candidates for elected office cannot tell us the right answer (and there should only be one), then why would we vote for them? My opinion is that it is found in the Preamble and if someone gives you Hamilton’s pithy version, I would agree to that as well. As far as the second question, that answer is too long for this forum.

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We can’t get the votes as long as we continue to ignore the cost and the size of the empire, Thom. Progressives like you and AOC and Bernie have been so reactionary on foreign policy even the far right is able to seize that issue as their own. NATO IS obsolete. It is so damn obsolete it has to CREATE the conditions that justify it’s existence. As in Eastern Europe. Face up to the real power structure Thom and take on the MIC the way you take on Wall Street

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