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Progress Report

Progress Report published on

Statement from Lurelle Robbins, Chair, Multnomah County Democrats

The Multnomah County Democrats want a better world for all people. We stand for progress, equality, and opportunity for all. We believe that everyone has a right to peace, dignity, and justice. We want decent education, health care, and work… for everyone!

With those lofty goals in mind, we are building party infrastructure and volunteer support that will lead us to meaningful action. This process requires patience. It requires us to work in a disciplined way through all of the steps necessary to make our Democratic voice heard again. A little over six months ago, our new teams came together. Since, we have accomplished a great deal:

  • We increased the number of Precinct Committee Persons by 25% to nearly 700.
  • We increased the number of monthly Pillar Contributors, whose funds are needed to maintain our office, pay our bills, and print our literature.
  • We hosted a successful CELSI fundraiser in May which brought in record donations.
  • We launched our Neighborhood Leader Program.

We passed seventeen resolutions. Most prominently, we supported:

  • The governor’s strengthening of sanctuary law and expansion of protections for immigrants.
  • Efforts to keep the Elliott State Forest in the public domain.
  • The drive for Oregon to join the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact (an effort that, alas, did not succeed).
  • We accomplished a lot in six short months. But we have a whole lot more to do! We need more neighborhood leaders, Precinct Committee Persons, funds, outreach, and a whole flotilla of new, directed actions and advocacy to advance our agenda.

We rely on ourselves—the members of the Multnomah County Democrats—to accomplish what we need to do. We rely on our collective skills, patience, discipline, dedication, and above all, our belief in the democratic institutions of the great American experiment.

I extend my appreciation and gratitude to every member of our county party. Here’s to another great six months!

We may encounter many defeats, but we must not be defeated.
-Maya Angelou

Report of the Second Vice Chair

The Second Vice Chair is the party’s facilitator of participation. A key responsibility is credentialing. That is, making sure that every Precinct Committee Person is empowered to vote at district and Central Committee Meetings.

The primary election in every even-numbered year provides the opportunity to be elected by your neighbors to serve as Democratic Party PCPs. In the bylaws, they are referred to as Elected PCPs. In addition to those 420 Elected PCPs, we have added over 200 more through the appointment process.

The term of office for PCPs (appointed and elected) comes to an end on June 8, 2018. The best way to continue serving as a PCP is to make sure your name appears on the ballot for the primary election to be held May 15, 2018. Details to come.

The Critical Role of Precinct Committee Persons

What is a Precinct Committee Person? In the structure of the Multnomah County Democratic Party, the PCPs are the party members who work at the party’s grassroots level. They represent their neighbors to the party, and the party to their neighbors. They are the party’s most important activists because they are the ones who influence local opinion and persuade residents to vote.

PCPs are organized by precinct within Oregon state house districts. For every 500 registered voters in a precinct, there can be one precinct person of each gender.

Spatial hierarchy of government divisions.
Spatial hierarchy of government divisions.

As members of the Central Committee, the party’s governing body, the PCPs have a voice and a vote in all matters that affect their precincts.

To qualify as a PCP candidate for the Multnomah County Democrats, each applicant must meet two criteria:

  • Have a primary residence in Multnomah County.
  • Be registered as a Democrat at that primary Multnomah County residence.

There are two ways to become a PCP:

  • A PCP can be appointed.  To be appointed, an applicant must complete the party’s PCP application form, available at the Multnomah Democrats’ website. Once the application is approved, the appointment will be voted on at a meeting of the Central Committee.
  • A PCP can be elected. PCPs can be elected during the May primary elections that are held in even-numbered years. After approving an application, the party will arrange to place PCP candidates’ names on the ballot. Who votes for them? Their neighbors! The next opportunity to become an elected PCP will occur in May 2018.

Although we have nearly 700 PCPs, we need many more. If you are interested in performing the most critical role in the party, please let us know by sending an email to vicechair2@multdems.org.

Smoke and Mirrors

Paul Ryan smoke and mirrors cartoon.

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