NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Saturday, June 16th, 2018

LIVE from Wenatchee: 2018 State Democratic Convention kicks off with patriotic celebration

Good morn­ing from Wenatchee!

This week­end, the Wash­ing­ton State Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty is hold­ing its 2018 Con­ven­tion, the last event in the party’s bian­nu­al cau­cus and con­ven­tion cycle, at the Wenatchee Con­ven­tion Cen­ter in the Apple Cap­i­tal of the World.

As we have in years past, NPI is offer­ing live cov­er­age of the goings-on at the Con­ven­tion. Today’s gen­er­al ses­sion just got under­way a short time ago after being called to order by State Par­ty Chair Tina Pod­lodows­ki.

In keep­ing with last night’s dec­la­ra­tion by East Wenatchee City Coun­cilmem­ber that Democ­rats are proud patri­ots who love their coun­try and want to take it for­ward, the con­ven­tion’s first moments were filled with pageantry.

Del­e­gates par­tic­i­pat­ed in both the Pledge of Alle­giance and a moment of silence. The moment of silence was offered for the pur­pose of reflect­ing on the mean­ing of the Alle­giance and the need to elim­i­nate ongo­ing vio­lence and injus­tice in the Unit­ed States. Del­e­gates held up #Jus­tice­ForAll signs dur­ing and after the Pledge of Alle­giance, empha­siz­ing the final words of the patri­ot­ic pledge.

Del­e­gates were also treat­ed to a stir­ring ren­di­tion of Amer­i­ca the Beau­ti­ful by local artist, Michael Car­los.

Fol­low­ing the pageantry, the del­e­gates were wel­comed to Wenatchee by Chelan Coun­ty Democ­rats Chair Bill Miller, Dou­glas Coun­try Chair Karen Keie­man, and 12th LD Democ­rats Chair Dan Maher. “We wel­come you to North Cen­tral Wash­ing­ton and hope you come back often. Go out and do good work”, Keie­man said.

State Sen­a­tor Man­ka Dhin­gra (D‑45th Dis­trict) was appoint­ed Tem­po­rary Chair of the Con­ven­tion and will pre­side until a Per­ma­nent Chair is elect­ed.

Fol­low­ing the appoint­ment, rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Cald­well Con­fed­er­ate Tribe and the Yaki­ma Nation stood up and asked to be rec­og­nized.

Although Pod­lodows­ki request­ed that the con­ven­tion stay on time and stick to the sched­ule, Dhin­gra allowed them a moment to speak. The rep­re­sen­ta­tives sang a tra­di­tion­al song of the Cald­well Native Amer­i­cans that spoke of love, uni­ty, and strength. It was a pow­er­ful and fit­ting way to kick off the Con­ven­tion.

Next, can­di­dates cur­rent­ly run­ning for office were asked to come up to the stage to intro­duce them­selves and the posi­tions they’re run­ning for.

These Demo­c­ra­t­ic can­di­dates are teach­ers, CPAs, fire­fight­ers, health­care pro­fes­sion­als, union rep­re­sen­ta­tive, cur­rent rep­re­sen­ta­tives, non­prof­it lead­ers, and mil­i­tary vet­er­ans who are run­ning for leg­isla­tive and con­gres­sion­al offices.

Cre­den­tials Co-Chairs Javier Valdez and our very own Andrew Vil­leneuve then took the stage to deliv­er the Final Report of the Con­ven­tion Cre­den­tials Com­mit­tee.

Javier and Andrew report­ed that four hun­dred and six­ty-nine del­e­gates have signed in thus far, with six­ty-nine alter­nates signed in. Forty-nine alter­nates are eli­gi­ble to be seat­ed. If all alter­nates are seat­ed, then the total num­ber of eli­gi­ble vot­ers who may vote here in the hall would rise to five hun­dred and twelve.

Next, the cer­e­mo­ni­al roll call of the coun­ties and leg­isla­tive dis­tricts of Wash­ing­ton State was con­duct­ed by Rob Dolin, one of NPI’s found­ing board­mem­bers. Rob asked each del­e­ga­tion to describe them­selves in just three words.

Respons­es to this dif­fi­cult task were a mix of humor and Demo­c­ra­t­ic sen­ti­ment.

Some of the three-word phras­es includ­ed “We can count”, “Keep­ing it blue”, “Vote for Brown”, “Let’s go Mariners”, “Rise and run”, “Health­care for all”, “Keep fam­i­lies togeth­er”, “Lock him up”, and “Flip the 8th”. Oth­ers did not abide by the three word lim­it, offer­ing up longer respons­es such as “we pick the best apples”.

Many del­e­ga­tions sim­ply cheered as their dis­tricts and coun­ties were called.

Upon the com­ple­tion of the roll call, more Demo­c­ra­t­ic can­di­dates were rec­og­nized to address the assem­bled del­e­gates and alter­nates.

The first was con­gres­sion­al can­di­date for the 4th Dis­trict, Chris­tine Brown.

Brown opened her remarks by stat­ing that she is “run­ning to take a big table to Wash­ing­ton, D.C. with a seat for all of you”.

She reit­er­at­ed the impor­tance of ensur­ing every voice is heard with an espe­cial­ly loud and urgent call for com­pre­hen­sive immi­gra­tion reform. Brown also touched on issues of envi­ron­men­tal pol­i­cy and dou­bling down on renew­able resources. She asked Democ­rats all over the coun­try to get involved, can­vass, and advo­cate for Democ­rats run­ning in com­pet­i­tive dis­tricts in East­ern Wash­ing­ton.

“We want to turn East­ern Wash­ing­ton Brown”, she con­clud­ed, vocal­iz­ing Demo­c­ra­t­ic sup­port for both her­self and her Demo­c­ra­t­ic col­league, Lisa Brown, run­ning in the 5th Con­gres­sion­al Dis­trict against Cathy McMor­ris Rodgers.

Stay tuned for more news and analy­sis com­ing to you live from the Wash­ing­ton State Demo­c­ra­t­ic Con­ven­tion in Wenatchee.

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