We had an all-star cast of experts for the November general meeting of the La Mesa-Foothills Democratic Club, to talk about where we go now that the election is done. Speakers were:
- Michael Smolens, longtime political columnist for the San Diego Union-Tribune
- Kyra Greene, executive director of the California think tank Center on Policy Initiatives
- Ric Epps, political science professor at San Diego State University
- Cynara Kidwell, California political consultant and data analyst.
- And moderating was Evlyn Andrade, a member of the La Mesa-Foothills Democratic Club board and veteran campaigner.
The meeting was the evening of Wednesday, Nov. 4, but it was already looking like the Presidential election was done. Still, as panelist Ric Epps noted, that outcome was “bittersweet.” He said, “It says a lot about this country that it could be this close.”
– The hypocrisy of democracy in the US, where so many people are deprived of the right to vote by voter suppression.
– What do we say of people of color, given the racism inherent in the US?
– Why we need to look for better candidates.
– Liberal closed-mindedness.
– The Democratic Party’s inherent weakness on messaging.
– Whatever happened to Russian meddling?
– California: A deep blue state, but voting on the propositions often didn’t feel that way.
– How Uber, Lyft and other gig economy companies’ successful lobbying on Proposition 22 is an example of the need to control money in politics.
– What do local Congressional races say about the blue wave in California and San Diego?
– What’s the future of the county, and the county Democratic Party?
– The coming Latino wave.
– Why San Diego County needs to address wage theft.
– How police oversight might still fail.
– What San Diego Democrats learned about campaigning in the time of COVID-19, and how that lesson might be applied in future, more normal elections (with comments from Will Rodriguez-Kennedy, San Diego County Democratic Party chair).
Also, Michael Smolens asked us to clarify one point: Cynara Kidwell said during the meeting that the Democrats could still take the Senate, and Michael said that was impossible. He followed up to say that he was incorrect about that and Cynara Kidwell was correct; the Senate was (and still is) within reach for the Democrats.
And mark your calendars for next month’s meeting which is Dec. 2 in the evening. We’ll have a holiday party on Zoom, with musical entertainment. And we’ll also be doing our traditional charitable drives, so if you see any sales on socks and canned goods and such, scoop ’em up!