BY ED FELIEN
Please go to your DFL Precinct Caucus on Feb. 27. It’s a matter of life or death for Palestinian children. More than 10,000 Palestinian children have been murdered by U.S. bombs dropped from Israeli planes or from U.S. missiles shot from Israeli bases.
A caucus is a neighborhood meeting of people who identify as DFLers in your election precinct. You can find out where your caucus meets by contacting the Minnesota secretary of state’s office. They will have a complete list of caucus locations on their website: https://sos.state.mn.us/elections-voting/how-elections-work/precinct-caucuses/ . Or call them at 651-215-1440.
Registration begins at 6:30 p.m. The caucus starts at 7 p.m. At almost any time you can offer a resolution for the caucus to vote on and forward to the district convention. Please introduce a resolution calling for an immediate and permanent cease-fire in Gaza and an end to U.S. military aid and complicity in the genocide of Palestinians. The purpose of the caucus is to elect delegates to the district convention.
The district convention will endorse a candidate for the House chamber of the Legislature; vote on whether to forward resolutions from the precinct caucuses to the congressional and state conventions; and elect delegates to the congressional and state conventions.
The 5th District congressional convention will endorse a candidate to serve in the next session of Congress. Ilhan Omar has been a fierce opponent of the genocide against Palestinians. According to Slate, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is expected to spend at least $100 million to defeat Omar and the other six members of the Squad. That’s a tempting piece of cheese, and Don Samuels and LaTrisha Vetaw already look like they are nibbling at the bait.
The state convention will endorse a candidate to run for U.S. Senate. Amy Klobuchar looks invincible, but her last vote (against Bernie Sanders’ resolution to investigate whether there have been human rights abuses in Israel’s military campaign that violate U.S. laws and regulations which would therefore disqualify Israel from further military assistance) should encourage progressive district delegates to run for state delegate so they can vote undecided for the DFL U.S. Senate endorsement. The other item of business for the state convention will be the election of members to the Democratic National Committee.
The congressional convention and the state convention will both elect delegates to the national convention, and national delegates endorse a candidate for president. Because Biden continues to support Israel’s genocidal war against Palestine and has begun a war against Yemen without a congressional declaration of war in violation of the Constitution, we believe progressives should elect national delegates who will vote undecided for president.
The 5th District congressional convention will elect nine delegates to the national convention (more than any other congressional district because we had a higher turnout of DFLers in the last election), four women and five men—the final delegation will be half and half.
In order for progressives’ voices to be heard, we need to speak out. We need to talk to our friends and neighbors about the genocide being committed in Palestine. We need to talk with as loud a voice as we can muster. We need to shout it from the rooftops.
You have the power!
BY CHARLEY UNDERWOOD
Years ago, while trying to stop the U.S. war against Iraq, a fellow peace activist proposed involvement in the precinct caucuses, intending to withhold party endorsements until the candidates pledged to end funding for that particularly horrible war. The effort was called Peace First. Now the U.S. is funding Israel’s military invasion of Gaza, an action called genocide before the World Court. At this point, our own country has sent well over $150 billion in military aid to Israel since 1948, and President Biden plans on billions more. The result of Israel’s invasion has been to basically level Gaza, with around 25,000 dead, including about 100 children per day. Food, clean water, shelter and medical treatment are inaccessible.
Again, we can use our grassroots power to end this conflict, simply by attending the DFL precinct caucuses on Feb. 27, starting at 7 p.m. There you can ask to become a delegate at the endorsing conventions – for Congress on May 11 at South High, and for Senate on May 31 in Duluth. I strongly encourage you to run or elect a delegate for peace. Find your caucus at https://dfl.org/caucus/ and more Congress information at https://dfl.org/caucuses-conventions/cdconventions/. I just cannot stand the thought of more hostages dying, of more children buried under the rubble of their own homes. I encourage you to run as well, or to support a peace delegate. It is your democracy. Use it or lose it.