Laura Allen, TDW President-Elect and I had the honor and privilege of representing you, Texas Democratic Women, at the National Federation of Democratic Women’s (NFDW) Southern States Regional Conference in Nashville, TN on November 14-15. All of the states represented suffered losses in the mid-term elections—we were not the exception—but our margin of defeat was far greater. In their last legislative session, TN legislators passed a sonogram bill and this legislative session they have the TN version of HB 2 on their agenda. Florida’s state legislature has bills on their legislative agenda which threaten women’s access to health care and are anti-choice in nature. Laura and I were able to share about the successes of Blue Ribbon Lobby Day and rapid response in mobilizing our members along with thousands of other progressive, pro-choice activists during Texas’ 83rd legislative session.
Jay Parmley, Executive Director of South Forward, was one of the keynote speakers and his impression on the mid-terms began with, “You cannot fall out of a ditch. You can only climb out.” Jay elaborated further that he thought Democrats in the southern states had moved away from the message that resonates with our base thus failing to get our base to the polls.
You and I both know that things in Texas are bigger, and I don’t think we fell into a ditch. I believe it was a canyon. We have to begin now to climb out—one step at a time. We have to frame our message so that we pull our Democratic base voters back into the fold.
One of the perks of TDW membership is that you are also a member of the NFDW. Their 2015 convention will be held in Atlantic City, New Jersey on June 4-7, 2015. For additional information you can check out their website at www.nfdw.com.
I have received Elections Activities Reports from approximately 10 chapters and I am truly impressed with all each of these chapters did for our candidates. If you have not completed the report or returned it to me, I am still requesting that information to compile as a cumulative report of all our TDW election activities across the state.
During this holiday season, I hope that you have the opportunity to reflect on the past year—our successes and failures—and make a conscientious effort to positively effect change in Texas politics. We cannot wait until September (Labor Day) to begin mobilizing for 2016.
May this holiday season and New Year bring blessings, light and peace to you and yours.
With Pride, Power and Purpose,
President, Texas Democratic Women