It’s Time for a Change!

Why I am supporting Cynthia Busch for Chair of the Broward Democratic Party:

When Barack Obama was running for President in 2007, and people wondered whether he had a prayer of winning, he came up with a three word phrase that summed up what is possible in America:

YES WE CAN!

Cynthia Busch is asking for your vote to be Chair of the Management Committee and lead the Broward County Democratic Party into the 21st Century.

YES WE CAN!

I have worked with Cynthia in Democratic politics for over ten years, and she has never stopped impressing me with how hard-working and organized she is. First she joined the Plantation Democratic Club. The she became the precinct woman in her community. Then she was elected as the Democratic Party’s Area Leader for Plantation. Now she is Vice-President of the Plantation Democratic Club, as well as one of the primary organizers of Awake Broward. And she was a SUPER VOLUNTEER with President Obama’s election and re-election campaigns. And during all of these years, while fulfilling the responsibilities of these positions, she also found the time for the kind of grassroots activities that can serve as a model for Democratic groups anywhere. If there were voters that had to be registered, if there were volunteers that had to be signed up, if there were Democratic voters that had to be called, if there were petitions that had to be collected, if there were Democratic candidates to be campaigned for, if there were neighborhood teams that had to be organized, and if there were doors that had to be knocked on to GET OUT THE VOTE, Cynthia took on these tasks with energy and dedication to the Democratic Cause. Early on, I concluded that she never slept…. And did I mention that she has a husband and two beautiful daughters?

YES WE CAN!

Cynthia wants to bring people together to help build a modern, organized, and transparent Democratic Party. She will strengthen, expand, and enhance Democratic Clubs. She will make more efficient use of our website, emails, and mailers. She will rebuild the trust necessary to raise funds to build and maintain a 21st century political party. She will staff a Democratic Party office that will bring together eager and hardworking volunteers, that will be open and available at convenient times, and that will help to support and elect Democratic candidates all across Broward county. She has no conflict of interests which would get in the way of the Democratic agenda. And she will be open and completely accessible to the ideas and concerns of others, recruiting and empowering community leaders to be part of the decision-making process, and making human contact the heart and soul of the Democratic Party.

YES WE CAN!

As Rick Hoye, President of the Broward young Democrats, has so eloquently written: The Democratic Party has to do a much better job of reaching out to young people, minorities, and other demographic groups. We need leadership that fosters grassroots efforts and motivates activists to go the extra mile and understands the importance of delegating and holding others accountable with clearly defined duties. And as David Carr, creator of BlueBroward, says: Cynthia has near-universal support from the volunteers who did the grunt work of registering voters and getting out the vote. They know her as a leader because the has been doing that work side-by-side with them. She never lets her ego or sense of self-importance get in the way of the job that has to be done for the Party.

YES WE CAN!

Cynthia is fond of repeating President Obama’s refrain that “Change is hard.” But we all know that working for progress and a secure future for the middle class is change worth fighting for. We are fired up and ready to go with change in Florida, by standing up, organizing, and replacing Rick Scott in 2014.

YES WE CAN!

Now, Mitch Caesar has been the Chair of the Broward Democratic Party for 16 years. And you have to admit that he does have some admirable qualities. He has a louder voice and is taller than Cynthia Busch. But only Cynthia can build a team that supports each others’ efforts. Only Cynthia will bring together Democratic Party, Organizing for America, Union, and faith-based volunteers in a team effort to support our shared goals for the future. And only Cynthia has a specific plan of action to lead us to become the Broward Democratic Party we need to be. It is time for a change! And Cynthia Busch is that change!

YES WE CAN!

JD Camp: YOU hold the power to make the Broward Democratic Party realize its potential – your vote this Sunday

Shared by permission.

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: JD <campjdftl@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, Dec 7, 2012 at 1:50 PM
Subject: YOU hold the power to make the Broward Democratic Party realize its potential – your vote this Sunday

Hello fellow precinct committee people –

 

No, I am not running for any office during the Broward Democratic Party leadership elections this Sunday, 12/9. However, I could not just sit by and not get involved with this election. I did that in 2000 – and what a mistake that was. All I did in 2000 was “just voted” and did not get involved until the recount. I spent 3 full days counting ‘hung’, ‘dimpled’ and ‘pregnant’ chads. I was such a fixture that CNN interviewed me on TV (big woop! – I agree). My point is I would never just sit back and not get involved ever again. I have been involved ever since. In 2004 and 2008 I ran the GOTV office for the gay community. It was a huge team effort and because of that, we began to make a difference. I believe we need that HUGE TEAM effort at the county level and it starts at the top with the leadership. Since I have been involved in 2000, I have not seen anything close to its potential. Broward can do better.

 

There are some terrific people running for leadership offices on both official and unofficial “slates”. These people are dedicated, experienced and talented team players and can certainly get the Broward Democratic Party much closer to its performance potential than we have been with the current leadership. These people deserve our attention and understanding of what they are offering us – for the betterment of the party. For 12 years I have been intimately involved with local to national campaigns and the technology and strategy of the Obama campaign of ’08 blew me away. It was leaps and bounds beyond Kerry’s ’04. I was so impressed. The Obama campaign of 2012 did not disappoint me. We have so many of you precinct people and Obama volunteers who have now intimately seen this amazing Obama Campaign (OFA) in action and it is very reasonable to expect that level of teamwork, technology, strategy and yes, effectiveness, with our Broward County Democratic Party.

 

Yes we won in 2012, but we only won the state with under 75,000 votes. Broward is the largest county in registered Dems in the state and we did deliver more than 263,000 extra votes, but only 13 (2 barely) out of 67 counties delivered more votes for Obama than Romney. We are BROWARD COUNTY! We can do better. I looked at the results of the 6 largest counties of these 13 and found that Broward still underperformed significantly (-21%). If we had delivered the same ratio of votes to our registration numbers, we would have delivered an additional 57,000 votes! (320,000 total extra votes for the state) That is on par with where we should have been based on our voter registration numbers. By contrast, Miami-Dade over-performed significantly by +10%!!! Speaking of Miami-Dade, they recently held their county leadership elections and I was so impressed with how many had been intimately involved with OFA and I believe they will continue to outperform. I want the same for Broward.

 

In our Broward organization, we have an area without a designated Area Leader. We also have Area Leaders that are not as effective as they should be. We cannot let this continue. We need effective community organizers in these positions. We need new blood! These changes must be made at the top down and we need these changes now so we are in best shape possible for the mid-terms and Governor’s race. I believe so many people have been working extra hard in Broward, and the wins here recently were in spite of Mitch Cesar and the current organization. Mitch has been taking credit for the wins up and down the ticket and I don’t think that is entirely fair. Everyone involved has something to contribute and I hope they continue to do so, but I believe Mitch’s time has come and gone. We are now at the point where we need new leadership and better organization skills. We don’t need picnics in the final weeks before GOTV in a presidential campaign! We don’t need update emails from the DEC about when Mitch will be appearing on TV or Radio next! We need organizing meetings and skills training seminars and we need to have our army in place and well prepared for the next state, national and local elections. Mitch is known for saying “We know we will be outspent, but never outworked!” I like that attitude, but I feel that it is so much easier to “outsmart and out-organize”. We should be working smarter and not harder. We can do more. We can do better.

 

I first met Cynthia Busch around mid September of this year, but I did not really get to know her and of her abilities until I stepped up to help coordinate our efforts at all Early Vote sites in Broward. I saw that we had a tremendous amount of blue recommendation cards available to put in voter’s hands (again, much of this was in spite of the county party leadership) but there was no apparent plan in place to make this all happen – it was all just willy-nilly! We have far too much at stake to rely on willy-nilly!!!! Well, once I stepped up and offered to coordinate this effort at the 11th hour, I received so much support and direction from Cynthia that, to me, she is the main reason why that program was successful. (all this while she continued her duties as Area Leader, canvassing, staging area with OFA and so much more – she really is amazing!) She is the main reason why we got extra votes for Obama and as importantly, we got more Democrats elected on further down the ballot than previous years. This is the direction we need to move to and now is the time. I urge you to please vote for Cynthia Busch this Sunday, 12/9 for Chair of the Broward County Democratic Party. I also urge you to consider and vote for other progressives that are not afraid of technology or teamwork but instead embrace it and understand that is how we will move forward and become the powerhouse that is the Democratic Party of Broward!

 

Thank you and sincerely – jd

 

JD Camp

Precinct Committeeman R048

CampJdFtL@gmail.com

BrowardEarlyVote@gmail.com

Roy Trachtenberg: Why I am supporting Cynthia Bush

This is another endorsement received by email, reposted by permission.

From: roy trachtenberg <mrt1311@att.net>
Date: Tue, Dec 4, 2012 at 6:02 PM
Subject: Why I am supporting Cynthia Bush

To my fellow Democratic Committee Members from Coral Springs

I am a newly elected committeeman who is supporting Cynthia Bush. These are my reasons:
I have meet Cynthia and I like her ideas for the Broward Democratic Party. She wants to bring the energetic Obama campaign workers into the Broward Democratic Party. I have found her to be a great organizer, communicator, and leader. I really think that her heart is in the right place.
Mitch Ceasar supported a man and woman, Eugene R. Ouellett and his wife, who do not live in my district. E020 when I ran for committeeman. Later I found out that they live in Coconut Creek. How can the leader of our party support someone who does not live in the district? How can Mitch support people who are not active in politics? Are there more ghosts that Mitch supports because they support him but do not live in the district they represent or did anything in the last election?
Mitch called for a picnic the weekend before the Presidential election. Thankfully the Obama campaign made him cancel it. That really shows poor planning. Committee people were working on the phones and canvasing. That was not the time for a picnic – really poor planning and organizational skills.
 I made up “You’re invited to vote” flyers for encouraging early voting with a list of the Democratic candidates for my area. This flyer (absentee palm card} was very effective in my area. Democrats outnumbered Republicans in absentee and early voting. One of the names on it was Mark Gendal. Mitch said that I have to destroy all of those flyers that I paid for because I could be sued – city council was supposed to be non political – And then 2 weeks later he has the blue palm card with Mark’s name. Mitch cost me time and money..
It bothered me when we, American Jews for Obama, contacted Mitch about the Republican attack on the Jewish bloc vote. His attitude was that it was OK to lose the Jewish vote. My answer was why should we lose any ethnic vote. Mitch, our leader, did not have the right winning attitude.
Please vote for Cynthia Bush. Let’s defeat Rick Scott
Roy Trachtenberg
Democratic committeeman E020
PS:  I hope to see you at Coral Springs/Parkland Democratic Club Holiday Party Thursday, Dec. 6, 7:30 PM at Cypress Hall near the  swimming pool. Remember admission is an unwrapped toy for “Kids in Distress” plus dues or a nominal charge.

Endorsing Cynthia Busch and New Leadership for the Broward Democratic Party

When the elected members of the Democratic Executive Committee gather on December 9 to elect new leadership, I plan to vote for Cynthia Busch to replace Mitch Caesar as Chairman of the Broward Democratic Party.

You don’t have to dislike Mitch or think he is a terrible person to recognize that it’s time for a change. Some of the criticisms leveled at him are probably unfair. For the most part, I’d rather focus on the positive reasons to elect new leadership. I hope all precinct committee people will give Cynthia’s candidacy serious consideration.

Cynthia has near-universal support from the volunteers who did the grunt work of registering voters and getting out the vote. They know her as a leader because she has been doing that work side-by-side with them. The hardest workers simply want the formal county Democratic Party organization to be better aligned with the grassroots.

There’s some chatter in the local political blogs (and comments sections on blogs and news sites) about the involvement of lobbyists and other political operatives in backing Cynthia’s candidacy. This seems to be the major strategy to discredit her. The truth is she will need the backing of some established, connected area Democrats to succeed in this effort. Mitch actually works as a lobbyist, so I don’t see the logic in why it would be better to reelect a lobbyist than elect someone who might have friends who are lobbyists. More importantly, I know Cynthia well enough to believe her motivation for running has nothing to do with these alliances.

Cynthia has been part of an extremely dedicated and effective group of campaign workers based in Plantation. If the rest of the county was as well organized, we might well have seen better results in 2010. We will need to do better in 2014 to give Gov. Rick Scott the pink slip he deserves. I don’t think it will be easy, but it’s a worthy goal. That is why Cynthia is running for DEC Chair.

The biggest criticism I have of Mitch is that he seems to put far more energy into this election — lining up votes to get himself reelected — than any other Democratic campaign. The party’s communication strategy, or lack thereof, is also a sore point, with the use of email, the web, and Facebook as particular embarrassments. The email list is used mostly to promote Mitch’s media appearances. The party website has improved somewhat, but is still short on timely, useful information.

I do think Mitch deserves credit for leading on the printing and distribution of the palm cards that were used effectively to promote Democratic candidates in the down-ticket races, which probably had a lot to do with victories like the election of Scott Israel as Sheriff. I’m sure there were other people who worked on that, but it’s one thing Mitch actively promoted that made a difference in this cycle. He also made more of an effort to get precinct committee people actively involved in efforts like contacting people who vote by absentee ballot to make them aware of changes in the law.

But I still see Mitch as more interested in maintaining control than inviting broad participation. For that reason, I believe Cynthia will be much stronger as a grassroots organizer. It just doesn’t seem to be in Mitch’s nature to move in that direction, even if he wanted to.

Mitch Caesar does a fine job of representing the party on TV. Maybe he’ll continue to have a future as a media personality; it’s not hard to see him getting himself a radio show. I wish him well. But he shouldn’t have the job of party chairman for life.

It’s time for a change.

Endorsements for Cynthia Busch for DEC Chair from Niomi Devereux and Janet Thompson

These endorsements for Cynthia Busch for DEC chair from Niomi Devereux and Janet Thompson are reposted by permission. Niomi wrote the first as a letter to the editor in response to a Sun-Sentinel article that discussed the challenge to Chairman Caesar in dismissive terms (“every four years his enemies mobilize to oust him, and fail”).


As a neighborhood team leader for Organizing for America in 2012 and a general volunteer in 2008 and 2010, I am fully aware of who got out the vote each time. It was not the Broward Democratic party under Mitch Caesar. I am not a precinct person and have no vote, but I do know there needs to be change at the top of Broward’s Democratic party. OFA was involved in getting Obamacare passed in 2010. It was up to the Broward Dems to get out the vote. They did not. In 2012 OFA was advised that Broward needed to get at least 250,000 more Democratic votes than Republican votes as a cushion to give Obama Florida. We did that with voter registration, phone banks, door to door canvassing. The Democratic party of Broward was not a part of this year-long effort. At the very end, members of the local Democratic party assisted us. Mitch Caesar may appear on television and seem personable, but he takes credit for work he has not done. Creating a fiefdom for himself is all I’ve seen of his involvement in the local Democratic party. There definitely needs to be change. Having worked with Cynthia Busch since 2008, I know how capable, energetic and caring she is. If I could vote, she would get it hands down.

Sincerely,

Niomi Devereux,
Volunteer with Organizing for America
863 Spinnaker Drive West
Hollywood FL 33019
954-455-2105
niomid@hotmail.com


I am starting my third term as a precinct committeewoman for K13 in Lauderdale Lakes. I worked with OFA, Cynthia Busch, and Alan Ehrlich registering voters, canvassing, and also some phone banking. And I do feel strongly about the work performed by Cynthia and Alan along with the OFA played a major role in the re-election of President Obama. All of the times I was working on the campaign, not once did Mitch make an appearance or offer assistance. However, he was very quick to accept credit for the success. The true DEC members knew deep in their hearts who the “feet on the street for Obama” were, and it was not Mitch! He is a lobbyist, and he uses his DEC chairmanship to further his personal career for monetary reasons. He appoints the same DEC members over and over, year after year to be a part of his management team. He is hesitant to listen to new ideas and/or recommendations. He wants to be in the spot light at all times. We need young Democrats to further our goals in Broward County. You can rest assured that I’ll be voting for Cynthia at the December meeting! Thank you, Niomi for your hard work!

— Janet Thompson

One Election Down, One to Go! (Endorsing Cynthia Busch for DEC Chair)

Re-posted, by permission, from Alan’s email list.

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Alan G. Ehrlich <pan1@comcast.net>
Date: Mon, Nov 26, 2012 at 4:42 AM
Subject: One Election Down, One to Go!
To:

    Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!  I still have not stopped giving thanks for the amazingly good results on November 6th.  Let me again thank you for everything you did to make that happen!    But now you have to do more.  You see, we have one more election coming up, which is hugely important to every Democrat in Broward County.  The Reorganizational Meeting of the Broward Democratic Party, also known as the Broward County Democratic Executive Committee, has been set for Sunday, December 9, 2012 at 1:30 PM at Diamantes, located at 6501 W. Commercial Blvd. in Tamarac.  The only purpose of this meeting is the election of officers, including the Chair and other officers.Cynthia Busch, Broward’s Area 6 Leader and Vice President of the Plantation Democratic Club, has announced her candidacy for Chair of the Party, and I enthusiastically endorse and support her in this election.  I have worked with Cynthia for over ten years in local and national election campaigns.  Together, we have registered thousands of new voters in Broward County, helped to put on the ballot and then pass the Fair Districts Amendments, collected hundreds of absentee ballot requests, campaigned for national and local Democratic Party leaders and candidates, and knocked on the doors of thousands of Broward County voters to get out the vote.  Cynthia is one of the hardest working volunteers in Broward County, whether the work is for the Plantation Democratic Club, Awake Broward, the Broward Democratic Party, or Organizing for America’s campaign to re-elect Barack Obama.  Just like the example set by Bill Kling, the sorely-missed former President of the Plantation Club, Cynthia has NEVER let her ego get in the way of doing what is best for the Democratic Party; she never thinks that she is too good or too important or too busy to personally participate in the kinds of effective grassroots activities mentioned above!

To see more about why Cynthia Busch is the perfect person for this position, please click on the following link:   http://us6.campaign-archive1.com/?u=f7b4d0a77b799eca88ad7dfbd&id=766f28248d#

As Rick Hoye, the President of the Broward Young Democrats, has said:  “We need leadership that fosters grassroots efforts and motivates activists to go the extra mile and understands the importance of delegating and holding others accountable by clearly defined duties.  Indeed, we as a party will be stronger if collectively we know what our roles are and what is expected of us all.”  Cynthia Busch will provide such leadership and will help to revitalize the Broward Democratic Party.  IT’S TIME FOR A CHANGE!  CYNTHIA BUSCH IS THE CHANGE WE NEED!

The only people eligible to vote in this election are those precinct committee members who were elected (including those who ran unopposed) in the August 14, 2012 Democratic Primary Election.  A precinct committee member, who for any reason, is unable to attend the Reorganizational Meeting, may execute a written proxy to designate another Democrat residing in the same precinct to vote on their behalf.  The proxy must be sworn to before a Notary Public or validated by two registered Democrats signing as witnesses, and the written proxy must be submitted to the Chair before the meeting is called to order.  (I have proxy forms for any precinct committee member who is unable to attend the meeting.)

(And, yes, I do plan on running with Cynthia to be one of the officers, and I am asking for your vote as well.)

So please make note of the time and place of this election:  Sunday, December 9, 2012.  The meeting is scheduled for 1:30 PM and pre-registration will start at  12:30 PM.  The location is Diamantes at 6501 W. Commercial Blvd., in Tamarac (on the north side of Commercial east of University Drive and just west of NW 64th Avenue.)

Call or write if you have any questions.  And, thank you for your support!

Alan
954-472-6211

How to leverage a political protest on Wall Street

…and how not to.

Sit-ins and peaceful protests are the platform for poor people and students.Protest outside U.S. Federal Reserve Building New York City

 

If one were to watch Anthony Hopkins as President Nixon speaking to hippies at the Lincoln Memorial in the 1995 Oliver Stone biopic, Nixon, it exemplifies this.

 

They protested violence and the Vietnam conflict in favor of world peace; when the president starts to discuss geo-political leverage versus red China and the Soviets, they stare with blank faces.

 

No different today insofar as the point consumers seek to make over financial industry practices and exploitation of middle and lower-class Americans.

 

  • Sit-ins fail. No one pays attention because guilt is not compelling enough
  • You want to get someone’s attention in American society today? Compromise earning power
  • Forget sitting in the cold to gain sympathy; no one is moved by such gesturing
  • Everyone interested can do one thing: Poll takers and market research analysts suggest the typical American holds under $3,000 in savings at a given time. If it is with a money center bank, meaning Wells, JP Morgan Chase, B of A, Citi, and a host of other big market makers, withdraw your savings and put the money in a safe, under your mattress, in a credit union, et cetera.

50 million Americans do that and that’s leverage. When a bank can no longer aggregate direct deposits from millions of middle-class paychecks and kick that money up to an investment bank or loan it out at six times the APR, then protests are noticed.

 

Hurt someone physically or hurt their income sources. Not sit-ins. Those are, and always have been, for poor people with no leverage. They fail.

 

If a protest rallies poor, desperate, dissatisfied Americans like Malcolm X did, its leader is neutralized.

Enough sitting in on Wall Street. To change policy there, hurt the guy in the navy blue suit’s Christmas bonus rather than sitting in a park on social media marching up the street.

 

 

Political campaign reform? I’ll take an order of that indeed

For the love of God, what might it take for a candidate to stand in front of a group of voters and declare an interest in certain issues only to follow with specific action plans and a summary of the costs and political lobbying involved in the measure?

 

For example, “I hereby plan to reduce crime in the city of XYZ. I will be meeting with the police chief and the county sheriff to brainstorm and come up with a plan of attack within X time frame. The estimated costs associated in term of time and money are estimated at 123”.

 

Problem is, these buzzwords are used to the point of dilution and voters inevitably reach frustration and disenfranchisement. If one wants to engage, they must articulate one or two key concepts and go from there instead of lobbying votes with the same old, “We want fair taxes and a good educational budget”.

 

Economics. It is all economics. Who gets what, how much of it and at what price.

Greater Pompano Beach Democratic Club’s Monthly Meetings

Greater Pompano Beach Democratic Club meet on the 4th Thursday night of every month at 7 pm at the E Pat Larkins Center 520 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd. If you have any questions or would like to join the club please contact Mr. Ronald Thurston Jr. President at 954-691-6019 batt671@yahoo.com or Ms. Phyllis Smith Vice President at 954-971-1062 Miss_PrettyP@bellsouth.net

Coverage of Redistricting Hearing Features Broward Activists

The Sun-Sentinel’s Broward Politics blog called out Alanna O. Mersinger for summing up the importance of redistricting reform at Tuesday’s hearing in Davie. Broward Democrats turned out to speak on behalf of implementation of the reforms approved by constitutional amendment last year, which the Legislature seems determined to sabotage.

It was crystal clear when Alanna O. Mersinger of Miramar got her turn at the mic Tuesday night in Davie at a joint House-Senate hearing on redistricting.

Here’s what she said:

I came to the last redistricting [hearing] and I said please make it contiguous, compact and the communities of interest together.
So my city, the fabulous city of Miramar, has five representatives and senators, because they cut it up like a little jigsaw.

Now my representative is a lovely man, but he lives in Collier County.

In between myself and my representative is 110 miles and about 18 alligators.

Why? What do I have in common with these alligators? Nothing.

All I’m asking for is this time when you do it, don’t take my power and disburse it. You have taken the power of Miramar, where we can really not have an impact on any of these races. We are almost a sidebar.

Give us back our power. We’re entitled to our power.

This is a democracy. I want a republic. Let me have my power back in my republic.

Read the whole story: Miramar resident explains why redistricting is important to everyone

Also: coverage from the day of the event, featuring an outspoken Randy Fleischer.