DemCon2016: Women’s Work at the Convention

Evening Speeches Preceded by Days of Issue Meetings

At a discussion on women and politics, speakers included Hilary Rosen (left), a commentator from CNN; Jane Mayer, an investigator reporter for the <em>New Yorker</em>; Jill Abramson, past executive editor of the <em>New York Times</em>; and Susan Glasser, who led the discussion, editor with <em>Ms.</em> magazine.
Susan Rose

Wednesday evening held extraordinary, moving speeches — especially President Obama’s — at the Democratic National Convention, and I’ll describe the highlights in my next post. But the evening broadcasts don’t begin to show the days, which are filled with caucus meetings, panel discussions, receptions, and advocacy. Women’s organizations meet daily at the convention to present their work to Democrats from all over the country. It is a wonderful menu of choices.

Some examples from the last two days: The Democratic Women’s Caucus is the party’s internal women’s org. Party issues are discussed, and the party stars attend. This week Madeline Albright, Donna Brazile, and Nancy Pelosi spoke. Each encouraged the hundreds of women there to work hard for HIllary. Brazile is a joy to behold as she ran the meeting like an old time revival. I am going to try it next time the Santa Barbara Democratic Women meet.

The Feminist Majority Foundation held a tea, but nothing ladylike was discussed. One of my favorite organizations, FMF is based on the West Coast and in D.C., and the group publishes Ms. magazine. Issues like the ERA [Equal Rights Amendment], clinic defense, and electing Hillary are their meat and potatoes. They endorse candidates.

Planned Parenthood held two events. At the lunch I attended, political stars like Wendy Davis, of pink sneaker fame, Al Franken, and Cory Booker spoke out about the importance of health services provided by PP and reproductive rights. We were given an advance briefing on their political strategy planned for November to elect Hillary.

Emily’s List held a reception celebrating its 30 years. The mission of Emily’s List, an avowed Democratic organization, is to elect pro-choice women to office and raise funds for their campaigns. Their endorsement matters in many high profile elections.

Emerge, half as old as Emily’s List, focuses on training Democratic women. Now in 15 states, they began in Northern California. (I am a board member of California Emerge.). They held several gatherings.

Wednesday ended with an invitation to a panel discussion sponsored by Politico the online news mag. Editor Susan Glasser runs a program within Politico called Women Rule. She led a discussion on women and politics. Panelists included Hilary Rosen, a commentator from CNN; Jane Mayer, an investigator reporter for the New Yorker; and Jill Abramson, past executive editor of the New York Times. The four women debated the 24-hour news cycle, print versus digital, and the current election coverage. It was like eating chocolate.

Just think, this was only one issue area at the convention.

This weekend I will close out my posting with a report on final speeches and Hillary’s acceptance of the presidential nomination.

Susan Rose, a former Santa Barbara County supervisor, attended her first Democratic National Convention in 1960 as a college student. She writes about the 2016 convention this week at The Santa Barbara Independent.


Please note this login is to submit events or press releases. Use this page here to login for your Independent subscription

Not a member? Sign up here.