There was a decent sized crowd of about 80 people who gathered at Neighbors restaurant last night in Vienna for a meeting of Our Revolution (Bernie Sanders’ PAC). The main purpose of the meeting was to come together to get a sense of how the organization should move forward in the wake of Donald Trump being elected POTUS.
We started out by breaking down into various groups of 5 to 10 people in order to discuss what topics we believed needed to be brought to the attention of the entire group. At my table, we focused in on a couple issues and thought it was important to focus on things that would be appealing to both voters in Northern Virginia as well as the more rural communities in the Commonwealth. Among other issues, we thought people could potentially unite around protecting Medicare, the fight for a $15 minimum wage, and affordable housing.
When each table reported on what they discussed, it appeared as though we all had very similar discussions — though the exact issues were sometimes slightly different. Overall, it was very telling that these were folks who weren’t giving up on progressive values just because Donald Trump had won the White House.
There was even some discussion about how we can make sure to hold the Democratic Party accountable if it’s not doing enough to stand up for progressive values. The basic message was that people from Our Revolution have to become involved in the Party’s structure (as well as in other progressive groups). One person even played on Obama’s “don’t boo, vote” phrase by saying “don’t complain, take over the committee.”
Since there are plenty of districts that don’t have every precinct or at large seat filled, it would be relatively easy to become more involved in the Democratic Party and potentially take it over. So while you could complain about Democrats in the House keeping the same leadership, or that Hillary didn’t do enough in the swing states, the best message from last night’s message was you have to get involved and be the change you want to see.