Back from Williamsburg after attending the DPVA Steering Committee (Friday night), DPVA State Central Committee (Saturday am), Unity Rally (Saturday noon), and Democratic Black Caucus Juneteenth Dinner (Saturday night). I’ve never seen Virginia Democrats so united behind their ticket. 50% of Democratic voters had Creigh Deeds as their first choice for governor – – at least 45% had him as their second choice, and that makes it very easy to unify behind Creigh. He is an experienced, moderate, enthusiastic, and innovative leader who will be a great governor. Likewise Jody Wagner (Lt. Gov.) and Steve Shannon (Attorney Gen.) have overwhelming support among Virginia Democrats – sometimes statewide tickets have had some tension among the candidates – not this time. Jody and Steve will help Creigh win and govern. The State Central Committee featured officer elections, with only one contest, and all with a positive spirit. (See below.)
Officer elections: The State Central Committee reelected as Chair the Hon. Richard Cranwell, Vice Chair for Organization the Hon. Jennifer McClellan, Vice Chair for Finance Jim Turpin, Vice Chair for Outreach the Hon. Donald McEachin. Craig Fifer replaced Justin Wilson as Vice Chair for Technology and Communications (although we expect to see more great things from Justin in the future). Barbara Klear took over as Treasurer from Abbi Easter, although Abbi remains on the Steering Committee as 7th Congressional District Chair and will continue to provide leadership. Beloved Secretary Pixie Bell retired after 16 years, and was succeeded by Steve Bunn, who will do a terrific job; Pixie, who was first elected to Central Committee in 1972, will remain on the committee (thank goodness). I have been serving as both Vice Chair for Rules and DNC member for the past year, but am happy to turn over the Rules position to Fred Hudson, who will do an excellent job.
Latino Caucus: The Democratic Latino Caucus of Virginia elected enough members to the Central Committee to be recognized as a caucus. Congratulations to Alfonso Lopez and the other leaders of the organization. Si se puede!
Resolutions: The Central Committee endorsed the proposed resolutions. See Post. In addition, we passed a memorial resolution honoring the late Sue Bidderman of Fairfax and a resolution pledging support for the Deeds-Wagner-Shannon-ticket. The Central Committee elected three at large members of the Resolutions Committee – Linda Brooks (Newport News), E.J. Scott (Manassas/Manassas Park), and me.
Unity Rally: Despite threatening skies, which did result in rain (an old Italian sign of good luck), the party held an invigorating unity rally, featuring the Deeds-Wagner-Shannon, Gov. Kaine, Sen. Warner, Sen. Webb, Cong. Scott, State Sen. Saslaw, and Chairman Cranwell. Virginians have a clear choice this fall and will chose to continue with the progress made by the Warner-Kaine administrations.
Black Caucus Juneteenth Dinner: This excellent fundraising dinner was the third such event put on by the Black Caucus of the DPVA, Speakers included Chair Evelyn Morris-Harris and other Black Caucus leaders, Cong. Robert Scott, Creigh Deeds, Jody Wagner, Steven Shannon, Richard Cranwell, and Jon Bowerbank. Members of the General Assembly black caucus and other legislators including Ward Armstrong and Bob Brink (my delegate) also attended. Recipients of the Josephine Marshall award included 8th CD members Terron Sims and John Chapman. The event demonstrated the commitment of the African American leadership to the Democratic ticket. Thanks to Elizabeth Palmer Johnson of the 8th CD for her work on the dinner.
Next Meeting: September 11-12, 2009.