Editor’s Note: On Jan. 14, the Central Committee of the Democratic Party of Sacramento County (DPSC) will elect a new Board Chair to a two-year term. Sacto Politico invited essays from both candidates. This is Andrés Ramos’s. Click here for Tracie Stafford’s essay.
The Democratic Party is at a crossroads. 2020 is in the rearview mirror and though it was a tough year, the silver lining is we defeated Donald Trump. But while we rightly celebrate taking back the White House, we need to recognize that there was no blue wave down the ticket. Democrats lost seats in Congress and at the state and local levels. And the divides within our party have continued to grow. As we turn the page on the Trump era, we need to shift our focus to unifying our party and working together to win back seats up and down the ticket, from Congress to school board.
To do that, we need leadership with the skills and vision to reform the Democratic Party and achieve its full potential. That’s why I’m running for Chair of the Democratic Party of Sacramento County (DPSC), our local unit of the party. I’ve spent the past 10 years working within DPSC in various capacities — as parliamentarian, controller, and campaign services director. With my years of experience working for the party and on numerous campaigns, I know how to move the levers of power to make the DPSC an effective tool for progressive change.
As Chair, I will work to:
Unify the party. We’re a big tent party and too often fight each other, especially after a primary battle. The Chair should be a mediator working to bring us together, ensuring everyone gets a fair process, and leading by example by treating others with respect.
Professionalize the party’s operations. DPSC is a volunteer-run organization, and the Chair needs to promote a collaborative work environment, be willing to get in the trenches to ensure the work gets done, and implement achievable protocols and procedures.
Advance our policy platform. We should work with our elected officials and community-based advocacy partners to enact progressive policy. We need to lead with our values.
Win red-to-blue seats and defend Dem-held offices by doing long-term strategic recruitment, training, and campaign planning. We need a compelling message that gives voters something to vote for — our message can’t just be that Republicans are worse.
Support our Democratic clubs and members. We need to support our rank-and-file activists who do the work in their club and community, especially in the unincorporated areas of our county. DPSC should provide more resources, training, and mentorship.
Outreach to diverse communities and build partnerships. The party too often takes our base, especially communities of color and organized labor, for granted. The Chair needs to partner with our diverse constituencies to ensure they have a seat at the table.
On January 14, the DPSC will elect our new Chair. I’m proud to have the support of our outgoing Chair and our two previous Chairwomen. If I’m fortunate enough to be elected, I will work to fulfill the trust placed in me by working every day to make the Democratic Party the successful and effective organization that we need it to be.
Andrés Ramos is a resident of Sacramento and an attorney who specializes in legislative drafting. He has been a leader in various local campaigns, including successful efforts to enact by-district elections in local municipalities and school districts.