Our dysfunctional state party does not accomplish the basic functions that they list in their own bylaws. This is what the by-laws of the State Central Committee say it’s supposed to do:
- Assist and aid the election of all Democratic party candidates in general elections
- Promote and encourage Party organization at every level in the state
- Plan and execute the State Convention
- Do what is necessary to promote the platform of the State Convention
- Implement plans for improvement of the Democratic Party
- Participate in State Central Committee endorsements for state-wide elections.
There’s a State Convention? Who gets invited? There’s a Democratic Party platform in Illinois? Is it different from the national party’s platform in any way? And, if you’ve been involved with campaigns, all Democratic Party candidates get help in the general election? What exactly are the plans to improve the Democratic Party?
Here are the things I think are important if Democrats are going to win elections consistently:
- We need to have a party platform that spells out what it means to be a Democrat in
Illinois. Lay out what we stand for, and have it available on our website.
- The Democratic Party ought to be out to win every race, in every district, not just those in the General Assembly necessary to maintain personal power.
- The Democratic Party should be talking more to voters across the state about our
message, and become the party of change (for the better).
- We must hold our candidates and elected officials to ethical standards: for example, sexual harassment, even by party members and officials, should not be swept under the rug.
- The fundraising base of the Democratic Party of Illinois should be small donors, and not focused on those who would like to gut our public education and public trust.
- Finally, the Speaker of the House and the Chair of the Democratic Party of Illinois should not be the same person. The Democratic Party of Illinois should not be used to further just one person’s personal ambition, but to further the goals of the Democratic Party and a just society.