This is how we respond — a comprehensive approach to new leadership, new organization, new focus, and a new energy. Let’s get to work.
Originally published November 13, 2016
PROGRESS OVER POWER • The purpose of our work is the dignity, equality, and elevation of every American. Our party must be an engine of progress in this country — both civic and political. • We need to win battles on behalf of the American people every day, not just on Election Day.
COMMUNITIES FIRST • Civic engagement every day in 3143 counties around the country. • We need to re-connect people to civic life, where they live and on the issues that matter most to them — and in all kinds of organizations and institutions. • Rebuild trust in politics and government, and give people reasons to be involved. • We must actively push back on the corrosive power of money and corporate interests driving our priorities.
INSPIRE PERMANENT ENGAGEMENT • Permanent engagement (not permanent campaign) should be the basis for building deeply active, deeply committed people that form the organized foundation for the modern party.
VOTING IS THE NATURAL CONSEQUENCE OF EVERYDAY ENGAGEMENT • We must help people build a habit of participation. • Participation is driven by teaching, training, and listening, by serving our members and helping them be more effective in their local communities as a citizen-led bulwark to a Trump Administration that we cannot predict. • Make voting ubiquitous by promoting universal enfranchisement and lowering barrier to participation.
WINNING IS THE CONSEQUENCE OF SERVICE • When we win more battles everyday on more of the things that matter most to our communities, we will inspire the kind of participation and loyalty we have longed for for years. • Loyalty is earned through progress not something blindly given based on habit.
STRONGER CANDIDATES • Community leaders nationwide make better candidates and make candidate recruitment easier as leaders will naturally self-select running for public office as the next step in their path of community service. • Encourage, train, and support candidates at every level.
COLLECTIVE LEADERSHIP • All members of the party (not just committee members) must be invited into our process at every level. We will be a stronger party with more aligned, engaged members if we increase opportunities to participate in defining our identity, our priorities, and our path. • This must be about vision and ideas not personalities and optics. • We must be coordinated by values. We don’t all have to do the same thing, but together we have to all work inspired by the same values of equality, justice, and opportunity and towards the same larger goals.
MODERN ORGANIZATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE • Distributed, services-oriented, values-centric, collectively led. • The party should drive innovation in ideas, technology, solutions, training. • Share intelligence across communities and with like-minded organizations. • Distribute responsibility and opportunity. • Resources, attention, and opportunity within the party should also be driven by a community first mentality — driving more energy and power to and elevating state parties.
ALL OR NOTHING • We must do each of these things (and probably more) with careful, concerted, sustained effort. • There is no simple, quick answer to becoming valuable to people in their everyday lives.
100,000,000 DEMOCRATIC VOTES • The electoral consequences of this plan will be massive increase in participation and massive increase in support for Democratic candidates. • The only people who aren’t part of our party are people who don’t participate or reject our values. Our goal is to dramatically increase involvement, not just win votes.
A MODERN PARTY
ABOUT THIS PROJECT
This plan was authored by Michael Slaby in the days after the 2016 Presidential election.