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A few upcoming Bay Area political events

Julian Castro at DNCThis Saturday, March 16, the Peralta Community College District presents the second installment of the 2012/2013 Barbara Lee-Elihu Harris Lecture Series with a speech from Julian Castro, mayor of San Antonio, Tex., and a featured speaker at last year’s Democratic National Convention. Castro’s address on “Moving Forward… Together” is co-produced by the Martin Luther King Jr. Freedom Center and Merritt College. The 7 p.m. event at the Oakland Marriott City Center, 1001 Broadway, is free of charge but space is limited and so reservations are encouraged; call 510-434-3988.

Carly FiorinaOn Thursday, March 21, former HP CEO and 2010 Republican U.S. Senate nominee Carly Fiorina will speak to the Commonwealth Club of California on “our financial future and the next tech revolution.” The club says Fiorina, now chairwoman of Good360.com and a CNBC contributor, “will share her thoughts on how the U.S. and California are performing in terms of innovation, job creation and economic growth.” Tickets to the 7 p.m. event at the Schutlz Cultural Hall in the Oshman Family Jewish Community Center, 3921 Fabian Way in Palo Alto, cost $20 for the public, $12 for club members or $7 for students with valid ID, and are available online.

George MillerAnd way out on May 4, donors are invited to help Rep. George Miller, D-Martinez, celebrate his 68th birthday (which actually is May 17) at a fundraiser with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, at the Shadelands Ranch, 2660 Ygnacio Valley Road in Walnut Creek. The event aims “to support George’s re-election campaign and George and Nancy’s efforts to win back the House of Representatives,” the invitation says. Tickets start at $125 each.

Posted on Tuesday, March 12th, 2013
Under: Calendar, Carly Fiorina, George Miller, Nancy Pelosi, U.S. House | 1 Comment »

Kamala Harris’ speech to the DNC

California Attorney General Kamala Harris has just finished addressing the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.

Harris – an East Bay native and former San Francisco District Attorney – was an early, ardent supporter of Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign, and he endorsed and campaigned for her as she sought her current office in 2010.

Here’s what she said:

http://youtu.be/yq-Q5-kqfAY

On behalf of the great state of California, I thank you for the honor and the privilege to be here. Let’s get right down to business.

We are here because we love our country, and we firmly believe in the American ideal that our country should work for everyone. That ideal is written into our laws, the rules of the road that create a level playing field in this country. Those are the rules I became attorney general to uphold. And those are the rules Mitt Romney would have us roll back.

He would roll back the rules that protect the air we breathe and the water we drink. Roll back the rules that protect the health and safety of women and families. Roll back the rules that prevent the kind of recklessness that got our economy into this mess in the first place.

Well, we’ve all seen what happens when you roll back those rules. What happens are rows of foreclosure signs. What happens are mountains of family debt. What happens is a middle class that’s hurting. That’s what we’ve seen in towns across California and across this country.

Read the rest of Harris’ speech, after the jump…
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Posted on Wednesday, September 5th, 2012
Under: 2012 presidential election, Democratic Party, Democratic politics, Kamala Harris | 5 Comments »

Tom Steyer’s speech to the DNC

Tom Steyer – co-founder of Advanced Energy Economy, co-senior managing member of Farallon Capital Management and chairman and funder of California’s Yes on Proposition 39 campaign – addressed the 2012 Democratic National Convention tonight in Charlotte, N.C.

Prop. 39 would require every company to use the so-called “single-sales factor” method to calculate their taxes, based on their sales within California. Companies could no longer choose the “triple factor” method, in which half the tax bill is based on California sales and half on property and employees here, allowing firms headquartered elsewhere to pay less. The loophole currently costs the state about $1 billion per year.

But Steyer, 55, of San Francisco, was in Charlotte to talk about President Obama’s long-term economic and energy plans – and to get in a few digs at Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney:

Hello, California. Hello, delegates. Hello, everyone else from America! I’m Tom Steyer. I’m a businessman, a professional investor, and a proud Democrat. I think Mitt Romney and I share the same income bracket— although I guess we’re never going to know. But the reason I’m here tonight is that Mitt Romney and I don’t share the same vision for the future, especially when it comes to energy. You see, this election is a choice—a choice about whether to go backward or forward. And that choice is especially stark when it comes to energy.

Take Mitt Romney’s approach. Governor Romney would do nothing to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and much to increase it. He would gut President Obama’s investments in clean energy. He wants to keep giving four billion taxpayer dollars to oil companies every year—the very same oil companies pouring millions into the outside groups backing his campaign.

Or we could follow President Obama’s long-term plan for the future for an economy fueled by a safe, secure, sustainable energy supply. During the last several years, we’ve seen tremendous progress on new technologies that can make us energy independent and create thousands of jobs. This is about investing for the long haul, not for a quick-and-dirty buck. This is about taking control of our destiny by doing what Americans do best: out-innovating, out-thinking, out-hustling our competitors. And President Obama has put us on track to do just that—making investments for the long term.

Read the rest of Steyer’s speech, after the jump…
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Posted on Wednesday, September 5th, 2012
Under: 2012 presidential election, Democratic Party, Democratic politics | 1 Comment »

Assembly Speaker John Perez’s DNC speech

Fresh from the end of a contentious legislative session, California Assembly Speaker John Perez, D-Los Angeles, addressed the 2012 Democratic National Convention tonight in Charlotte, N.C.

http://youtu.be/72Y9g5TGRz0

Good evening Democrats! I am so honored to join you tonight.

Certainly, this close to the election much of our attention is focused on the nuts and bolts of victory—how we’ll prevail in the swing districts and battleground states. But this convention gives us the chance to discuss something much more important than how or where we fight. It gives us the chance to reflect on the question of why we fight.
And the answer to that fundamental question can be summed up in one word — opportunity.

Opportunity is why we fight. Across the country, there are parents who want nothing more than the opportunity to have a job, and the ability to put food on the family table. We fight for them.

In too many states, even some folks who have a job wake up every morning in fear that they will lose that job simply for being gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. We fight for them.

On our nation’s campuses, students are seeking the opportunity to go to college, earn a degree, and find a career that will unleash their potential. We fight for them.

Women are fighting for the opportunity that comes with equal pay for equal work, and the respect that comes with having control of their medical decisions. We fight for them.

Inmigrantes de todo el mundo llegan a los Estados Unidos buscando una oportunidad para darles una mejor vida a sus hijos. Nosotros luchamos por ellos.

Read the rest of Perez’s speech, after the jump…
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Posted on Wednesday, September 5th, 2012
Under: 2012 presidential election, Assembly, Democratic Party, Democratic politics, John Perez | 1 Comment »

Rep. Barbara Lee’s speech to the DNC

Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, has just finished her speech at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.; as a member of the party’s platform drafting committee, she was tapped to speak in delivering that platform.

Here are her remarks as prepared:

I am so pleased I had a role in drafting this remarkable document. It embodies the values we hold dear as Democrats and as Americans. And it sets forth our great President’s vision for our future where together we will reignite the American Dream for ALL.

Because the reality is: four years ago, the American Dream had slipped out of reach for too many. And it had turned into a nightmare for millions.

President Obama changed our course. He invested in our future and put men and women back to work rebuilding our roads and bridges. He raised educational standards, invested in early childhood education and worked to make higher education more affordable for everyone. He invested in clean energy and enacted the broadest tax cut in history — reducing taxes on the middle class to near historic lows. He saved the American auto industry. He produced historic health reform. And he put forward a balanced deficit reduction plan that will put us on sound fiscal footing.

Today, our economy is growing again.

Our platform states that America faces a clear choice: move forward as a nation where everyone has the chance to get ahead, or go back to the same failed ideas that created the crisis in the first place. We will move forward, not backward.

Follow after the jump for the rest of Lee’s speech…
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Posted on Tuesday, September 4th, 2012
Under: Barbara Lee, Democratic Party, Democratic politics, U.S. House | 12 Comments »

Barbara Lee to present platform at convention

Rep. Barbara Lee, along with Newark, N.J. Mayor Cory Booker and retired U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Claudia Kennedy, have been tapped to present the party’s platform to the 2012 Democratic National Convention on Tuesday, Sept. 4 in Charlotte, N.C.

Barbara Lee (Dec-2010)This is the first time that Lee, D-Oakland, has been asked to speak at a Democratic National Convention, and it won’t be lost on anyone that one of the House’s most outspoken liberals is helping to present the party’s statement of core values.

“As a member of the Democratic platform drafting committee, I’m excited about presenting the 2012 platform,” Lee said Friday. “It is a strong document that clearly illustrates the contrasts between our party and the party of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan and sets out the vision of how under the leadership of President Obama we can and must move America Forward.”

Lee won’t be the only California presence at the convention’s podium: Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is the convention’s chair, and California Attorney General Kamala Harris also is scheduled to speak.

Posted on Friday, August 24th, 2012
Under: Barbara Lee, Democratic Party, Democratic politics, U.S. House | 8 Comments »

McNerney will skip convention, Garamendi unsure

Add Rep. Jerry McNerney to the list of Democratic elected officials who won’t attend the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., this September even as they try to retain their seats.

But it seems he has a pretty solid reason.

“The Congressman won’t be attending the convention, as it conflicts with his son’s wedding,” spokeswoman Lauren Smith said today.

McNerney, D-Stockton, is being challenged in the newly drawn 9th Congressional District by Ricky Gill, a recent law school graduate from Lodi whom the National Republican Congressional Committee named one of its Young Guns – a well-funded, well-organized up-and-comer taking on a vulnerable incumbent.

But Gill spokesman Colin Hunter said Gill hasn’t yet decided whether he’ll attend the Republican National Convention in Tampa this August; he declined comment on McNerney skipping Charlotte.

Various national media outlets have been building a list of Democrats avoiding the Charlotte convention, often from districts where President Obama’s approval ratings are low. Likewise, some Republicans who might benefit from distancing themselves from the GOP are avoiding Tampa.

It’s unclear whether Rep. John Garamendi, D-Walnut Grove, will go to Charlotte. Garamendi is challenged in the newly drawn 3rd Congressional District by Colusa County Supervisor Kim Vann, another of the NRCC’s Young Guns.

“A decision has not been made yet,” Garamendi spokesman Donald Lathbury said today. “We’ll have a better sense of his schedule closer to the convention.”

A spokeswoman for Vann didn’t immediately return a call or an e-mail.

UPDATE @ 1:05 P.M.: Alee Lockman, Vann’s campaign manager, says “no plans have been made as of yet” on whether Vann will go to the GOP convention in Tampa.

Posted on Wednesday, June 27th, 2012
Under: 2012 Congressional Election, Democratic Party, Democratic politics, Jerry McNerney, John Garamendi, Republican Party, Republican politics, U.S. House | 6 Comments »

Post-convention update: Local bloggers

I somehow missed these emails about local blogs amongst the many I received while I was on the road at the two political conventions.

Jeff Nibert, an Obama delegate from Pleasanton, blogged on his convention experiences at   http://kephalos.blogspot.com

You can also read Obama delegate and Tracy resident Lea Austin’s blog at http://www.leaslagniappe.blogspot.com/

If I had it to do over again – dare we even think about 2012? — I would definitely do a better job of promoting the local bloggers. I also suspect that a lot more people will be blogging in four years as the technology becomes more familiar to more people.

Posted on Tuesday, September 9th, 2008
Under: 2008 presidential election, Democratic politics, Political conventions | No Comments »

Post-convention button a work of art

Democratic activist and Obama delegate Kathy Klein of Lafayette designed this button for the Democratic National Convention in Denver in August.

An artist who spends more time on politics than artwork these days, she drew it originally for her favorite presidential candidate, Howard Dean. (See the woman’s throat pin.)

But after she was elected as a delegate for Barack Obama this year, she redesigned it: See the Obama campaign figure on the man’s shirt and the “2008 Denver” on the woman’s blouse.

Klein made only a handful of the buttons. Best of all, she gave me a signed copy. That sure beats all the cookie-cutter stuff they hand out at conventions.

Lafayette artist Kathy Klein designed this button for the Democratic National Convention in Denver in August 2008

Posted on Tuesday, September 9th, 2008
Under: 2008 presidential election, Contra Costa politics | No Comments »

Thursday’s DNC video highlights

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson:

2000 Democratic presidential nominee and former Vice President Al Gore:

And I’ll post Barack Obama‘s presidential nomination acceptance speech as soon as I’ve got a clean clip…

UPDATE @ 9:23 P.M.: Here it is…

Posted on Thursday, August 28th, 2008
Under: Al Gore, Barack Obama, Bill Richardson, Democratic Party, Elections | No Comments »