The California Democratic Party had its convention in Sacramento this weekend. In addition to electing Daily Kos regular RLMiller to the Environmental Caucus Chair, the delegates adopted policy position resolutions (PDF). There's some really great stuff in there (pardon the all caps — it's that way in the original):
Of course, it remains to be seen how many Democratic elected officials in California actually push forcefully for these policies. But wait, what's that in there, toward the bottom? End drone strikes? And no "grand bargain" on Social Security cuts of any kind? In direct conflict with Obama administration policies and proposals?
- AFFIRM CONTINUING SUPPORT OF CEQA [California Environmental Quality Act]
- SUPPORTING FAIR, ACCOUNTABLE, AND REPRESENTATIVE UNIVERSITY GOVERNANCE
- SUPPORT OF HOSPITABLE DISTINCT PART SKILLED NURSING FACILITIES
- CHARTER CITIES SHOULD PAY PREVAILING WAGE
- RESOLUTION SUPPORTING EFFORTS TO REDUCE GUN VIOLENCE & MASS SHOOTINGS
- DO NOT REPEAL THE VOTING RIGHTS ACT
- CONDEMNING REPUBLICAN EFFORTS TO PROMOTE AND PASS VOTER ID LAWS
- SUPPORT OF THE US POSTAL SERVICE
- MINIMUM WAGE WORKERS’ RIGHTS
- CLOSE THE CORPORATE LOOPHOLE [Proposition 13 property taxes "split-roll"]
- CALLING FOR OVERTURNING OF PROPOSITION 8 BY US SUPREME COURT
- SUPPORTING CALIFORNIA’S PUBLIC SCHOOLS AND DISPELLING THE CORPORATE “REFORM” AGENDA
- MORATORIUM ON HYDRAULIC FRACTURING
- SUPPORT IMMIGRATION REFORM AND PROVIDE PATH TO CITIZENSHIP FOR NEW AMERICANS
- RESOLUTION TO END UNLAWFUL DRONE STRIKES, EXTRAJUDICIAL EXECUTIONS, AND RESTRICT DOMESTIC DRONE SURVEILLANCE
- URGING PRESIDENT OBAMA TO REJECT THE TAR SANDS PIPELINE
- RESOLUTION TO SAVE SOCIAL SECURITY
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the California Democratic Party stands in opposition to the extrajudicial killings and use of drones as described herein, both foreign and domestic, and urges that our policies be structured within the framework of international law, Constitutional checks and balances, due process, judicial review, and transparency; [...]
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, cuts in Social Security should not be part of any deficit reduction program because Social Security does not add to the deficit; [...]See below for the full text of these resolutions.
Even if it's symbolic, I'm very glad to see the California Democratic Party take a forthright and independent stand upon core democratic principles and policies.
RESOLUTION TO END UNLAWFUL DRONE STRIKES, EXTRAJUDICIAL EXECUTIONS, AND RESTRICT DOMESTIC DRONE SURVEILLANCE
WHEREAS, the U.S. government sets a dangerous precedent as it continues drone strikes and extrajudicial killings on people in countries with whom America is not at war, the majority being “signature drone strikes,” where operators fire upon groups of men whose identities are unknown, but who are deemed “targets” based on vaguely defined “suspicious behavior” or “signatures,” including being a male of “military age,” while also utilizing the unlawful and inhumane practice of “double taps,” where rescuers of victims of initial strikes are killed by a second strike; and
WHEREAS, our drone attacks result in the disproportionate killing of 36 to 50 civilians for every one alleged combatant and, given that the Geneva Conventions prohibit attacks that "may be expected to cause incidental loss of civilian life... excessive in relation to the concrete and direct military advantage anticipated" during armed conflicts, and that the extrajudicial execution of any person, whether in peace or war time, is prohibited by International Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law, and knowing that the constant overhead presence of U.S. drones engenders hatred and desire for revenge among the communities under attack by terrorizing the daily lives of ordinary civilians beyond actual death and physical injury- destroying the culturally binding fabric of weddings, funerals, everyday community activities and the lives of children, many who are so traumatized they cannot go to school, and are unable to eat, sleep, play, socialize or function normally, which is a form of physiological torture and collective punishment prohibited by international law, all the while making the world and our nation less safe; and
WHEREAS, the current administration is directing the use of drones on American citizens by
- Authorizing the use of military drones to target and kill alleged terrorists, including U.S. citizens who may not even be involved in operational plots to harm our nation, without recognizing the United States Constitutional guarantee of due process for all people, including those accused of treason; and
- Directing the FAA to create regulations enabling drones to fly throughout U.S. airspace including California by September 2015 for surveillance of individuals or groups in public spaces and in their homes, in direct violation of our Constitutional guarantee to privacy and freedom from unreasonable searches;
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the California Democratic Party stands in opposition to the extrajudicial killings and use of drones as described herein, both foreign and domestic, and urges that our policies be structured within the framework of international law, Constitutional checks and balances, due process, judicial review, and transparency; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we call upon the Congressional delegation and the White House to:
- Make public all claimed legal justifications of present policies and practices;
- Conduct a fundamental re-evaluation and overhaul of current practices by reforming the policies authorizing the use of American military force, both foreign and domestic; and
- Re-institute Congressional authority and oversight with regard to war making powers and federal law Enforcement.
Committee Resolution, Co-Sponsored by: Karen Bernal, Margarita Lacabe, John Burton, Peter Leinau, Rick Tuttle
RESOLUTION TO SAVE SOCIAL SECURITY
WHEREAS, the Social Security program does not add to the federal deficit and, in fact, the Social Security Trust Fund lends money to the federal government through the purchase of government bonds;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, cuts in Social Security should not be part of any deficit reduction program because Social Security does not add to the deficit;
AND BE IT ALSO RESOLVED, the California Democratic Party opposes any effort to reduce Social Security under the guise of budget cuts that would help reduce the federal government deficit.
Supported by Chairman John Burton