Our Revolution, the organization that spun off of the Bernie Sanders 2016 campaign, is committed to advancing the progressive platform adopted by the Democratic Party this year. As part of that effort, they hosted a live stream event Wednesday evening promoting Keith Ellison for DNC Chair.
Ellison was introduced by none other than Bernie Sanders himself. When Sanders took the stage, it was clear that many of his supporters were in the room as a “Bernie, Bernie, Bernie” chant could be heard. But Sanders is all business these days and launched right in to a thank you list that included the many grassroots organizations supporting Ellison including Our Revolution, Communication Workers of America, American Federation of Teachers, National Nurses United, Democracy For America, Working Families Party, Move On, Good Jobs Nation, People’s Action, The People for Bernie Sanders, and Free Speech TV.
Sanders stumped for Ellison to loud cheers as he covered familiar topics like income inequality and the need for millions of people to stand together to make democracy work for all Americans, not just the 1%. Sanders touted Ellison’s long resume of fighting on the front lines for progressive values and driving citizen involvement in politics throughout his home state of Minnesota.
These days Sanders is taking a gloves off approach when speaking of the ills he sees within the Democratic Party and spoke to the idea that Dems need to “embrace new forms of energy and new members into their Party.”
When Ellison began to speak, he carried on with Sanders’ message of reform and made strong arguments for the changes he sees as necessary. About half way through his remarks, he used the analogy that “even a good car needs a tune-up” insinuating that the Democratic Party is in dire need of upgrades and modernization in not only their message but their membership. He stated in no uncertain terms that he believes the Democratic Party needs to be a party of the people, for the people, and that he is the guy that can deliver the needed changes. He called for a need to reach into the grassroots and not only enact a 50 State plan, but also a “block by block and precinct by precinct plan.”
Ellison did not mince words saying that the Democratic Party has lost over 900 seats in state legislatures and governorships across the country. He spoke clearly that we know who the Republicans are and who Donald Trump is but he countered with, “Who are we? What are we going to do?” His answer aligns with all grassroots organizers around the nation. He is calling to “organize, organize, organize.”
Ellison closed his remarks with a call for solidarity in the face of a Trump presidency. He urged viewers and audience members to “stand with everybody who is feeling vulnerable right now because one of the things that Trump has uncorked is that hate machine and we have got to resist it, stand up against it. And our best weapon against it is our own solidarity.”
After a brief pause, he ended with, “Let’s remake the Democratic Party, everybody!”
Find the official Our Revolution live stream page and a petition supporting Keith Ellison here.