Friday, June 23, 2006

Dem Party Platform

The Statesman reports here on the Democratic party convention in Idaho Falls, under the annoying headline "Democrats Promise More Coherent Message."

The headline is annoying because it plays into the media narrative about incoherent Dems; they don't know what they stand for, so why vote for them. It is also annoying because I think that instead of being incoherent, Dems just have great difficulty getting their message out and heard.

Some suggestions for the party platform.

Still, state Rep. Shirley Ringo, D-Moscow, said the party needs to clearly state its opposition to the constitutional amendment banning gay marriages and civil unions. Delegate David Fletcher of Payette County said the party should state its support of a woman's right to choose.

Democrats should declare support for raising the minimum wage and balancing the federal budget and their opposition for selling federal lands and making Idahoans declare a party affiliation in order to vote in primaries, said Ada County delegate Grant Burgoyne.

Canyon County delegate Richard Mabbutt of Nampa, who is running for state representative in District 12, said the party should declare its support for a phased withdrawal from Iraq and for impeachment hearings against President George W. Bush.

I hate to see the Dems include the freedom of choice issue in the platform. Support the freedom, sure, but just leave it off the platform. It's too divisive. Instead, I'd prefer to see a statement in favor of keeping public lands open, and opposing gun control. This is Idaho; make the platform reflect what Idaho voters want.


Sara E Anderson said...

Well, if the Democratic party isn't going to state its opposition to restricting a woman's constitutional right to choose, and to writing discrimination into the Idaho Constitution, who is? I see what you're saying, but taking it too far just makes the Democratic Party into the Republican Party for Wusses.

Alan said...

I do like the Dems to take a stand, but I prefer it to be one that helps getting elected. Example; I'd support Dems saying that it's time for a universal single payor health care system.

I think we'd be better off getting Dems elected who can then resist whacko legislation than taking a principled stand and being left on the sidelines on election day.

Bubblehead said...

The "Impeach Bush" suggestions will NOT help the party get elected; if I'm voting for Dems, I want to vote for people who are going to be doing more than just tilting at windmills.

Alan said...

Yeah, "Impeach Bush" is almost certainly counterproductive. Plain ole run of the mill oversight will turn up lots of political problems for BushCo, if the Dems get control of one of the houses of Congress.

If so, I hope they devote their time to fixing the problems we have, such as the deficit, insane tax policy, etc., instead of just stirring up trouble. Leadership is what I'd like to see.

slfisher said...

I agree with you that we should be opposing gun control, but I disagree that we should take out the woman's right to choose.

What I *would* like to see is it being made part of a larger plank that talks about improving education and access and opportunities for girls and boys so a) kids feel less likely to have sex (not "just say no" but real education), b) giving girls other options than having babies when they're young c) teaching kids responsible birth control, including emergency contraception and d) only *then* making abortion available. As it was once said -- "make abortion safe, legal -- and rare."

I'd also like to see more on fighting the general government tendency recently to get more one-sidedly involved in peope's lives -- in other words, attempts to control people's behavior rather than helping people who need it and ask for it.