Celebrations

MultDems proudly launch the 2020 platform

Multnomah Democrats 2020 Platform includes historic focus on racial justice and abuse of power

“Across the country, throughout Oregon, and within the Democratic Party of Multnomah County, the demand for racial justice is clear. The time is now to bring the demand for racial justice to the surface and for us to take action. Our platform takes that guidance from our racial inclusivity work group leaders. We must all work together for change.”

Lurelle Robbins, Chair of the Democratic Party of Multnomah County

Read the 2020 MultDems Platform: multdems.org/platform

On November 23, 2019, Democrats of Multnomah County approved a new party platform with unprecedented anti-racist articles that are unique to parties anywhere in the nation.

After all the legislative action items had been approved, one more motion was made from the floor. The articles had been arranged in the order introduced. The most recent, Tribal Sovereignty and Historical and ongoing Anti-Blackness in Oregon, were at the end. Danelle Stevens requested revising the order, which was quickly done to honor these new articles. The proposed change passed unanimously. Throughout the room filled with paper, laptops, pizza boxes, and coffee cups, applause erupted.

You can count the number of county parties in the state of Oregon that establish a platform at all.  For the Democratic Party of Multnomah County, the platform convention is a part of an ongoing cycle of collective activism. Built from the efforts of study groups for hot button political issues, the platform speaks of topics and positions from engaged activists.

As with past platforms, the newly approved 2020 platform has articles on climate, infrastructure, labor issues, and justice — 14 articles in all this year as a focus on racial justice came to the fore. Three of the new articles have specific, groundbreaking planks and legislative action to address racism and its repercussions.

“As far as I know, these articles are unique to our party. I don’t believe that any other county or state party has articles on these topics,” said Faith Ruffing, chair of the Multnomah Democrats Platform Committee.

Tribal Sovereignty article possibly unique in the nation

The Portland Metropolitan area is the ninth-largest community of Indigenous people in the United States, with 380 tribal nations represented, including the nine with land in Oregon. Even the county name—“Multnomah”—comes from the Chinookan name for the Indigenous people of the area. Current residents are surrounded by Indigenous culture in both our history and present day, and yet tribal members remain extremely underrepresented in politics.

Multnomah Democrats, led by Ruth Jensen, dedicated an article specifically to improving recognition of tribal sovereignty and disparities that continue because it is not well understood and respected. The political relationship between indigenous tribal nations and the United States government is unique. They are neither a special interest group nor a subset of counties but territories whose relationship with the federal government is defined by formal treaties and trust responsibility to protect Indigenous nations.

Calling for compliance with existing treaties, equal access to justice, and an end to disparities in services, the Platform seeks to enhance self-determination as well as the bonds of culture and family for native people.

Historical and Ongoing Anti-Blackness in Oregon article takes on racist heritage with an eye for healing

Infamously, Oregon entered the Union in 1859 as a “whites-only” state. Through to contemporary times, local and state governments have been complicit in anti-black policies. A group of black Democrats from diverse backgrounds came together to write an article focused on a path forward for this state and nation, with support from other members of the Platform Committee.

Through “unique and faceted” policies, the platform seeks structural change to alleviate the damage to Black Oregonians resulting from Black exclusionary history. The Democratic party of Multnomah County proposes reparations, solutions to disproportionate incarceration, and greater parity in home loans and small business loans.

Inequitable opportunity remains stark. The largest bank in the state of Oregon (Umpqua Bank) gave one single Small Business Administration (SBA) loan to a black owned business in the last ten years. Meanwhile, mega bank Wells Fargo provided less than 3 loans on average per year for the last 10 years.

Abuse of Power article

In addition to these articles focusing on particular groups of Americans, the 2020 Multnomah Democrats platform includes another new article addressing the dangers of abuse of power, particularly as it has ”the highest cost to those of us whose equal rights are still not recognized by all.”

“The new Abuse of Power article speaks to the violence, neglect, and disparities practiced under cover of institutional power. We see it as using racism to increase power, unjust incarceration, and harmful barriers to immigration. It addresses behaviors we see from Oregon to the current White House and will guide our ongoing fight for equity and accountability,” said Beth Woodward, a key author of the Abuse of Power article.

Racial inclusivity work within party raises awareness, drives change

In 2018, the Democratic Party of  Multnomah County chartered a Racial Inclusivity Workgroup (RIWG) to transform the party into a more inclusive group.

“We are learning how racism ranges from the subtle to the overt and we have made a commitment to investigate our own issues with race,” said Robbins. The RIWG organized workshops for party leadership, sponsored affinity groups, and developed a tool for identifying racial bias in policy documents such as the platform, the Racial Inclusivity Lens.

Co-chairs of RIWG, G.M. Garcia and Salomé Chimuku, and several workgroup members were active at the convention and contributed to guiding the direction of the platform. “It is time for this party to recognize racism and work together for justice. We can see that energy in this room,” said Garcia

Nature of platform

With a large, energetic volunteer base, the Multnomah Democrats maintain year-round policy and legislative action activity. All of that activity is organized around the platform. Each article is assigned to a study group of Democrats passionate about the topic. They also monitor legislation and other opportunities to influence policy.

Leading up to the platform convention every two years, the study groups draft updates of each article and solicit input from the Democratic voters of the county.

The culmination of the platform development process was the platform convention. In a day-long meeting, Multnomah County Democrats of all political stripes met face to face and drilled down into the specific wording of each legislative action item.

Jack Hanna, former treasurer and chair of the Pennsylvania Democratic Party and now a Multnomah County resident, participated in the convention for the first time.

“Party Platforms just don’t exist there (Pennsylvania). I am impressed with the time, effort and deliberation needed to create one. I truly enjoyed the convention experience and thought it helped me and all those participating to examine and obtain consensus on the major issues confronting our communities. It’s exactly what our Party should be doing right now,” he said.

After all the legislative action items had been approved, one more motion was made from the floor. The articles had been arranged in the order introduced. The most recent, Tribal Sovereignty and Historical and ongoing Anti-Blackness in Oregon, were at the end. Danelle Stevens requested revising the order, which was quickly done to honor these new articles. The proposed change passed unanimously. Applause erupted throughout the room.

Next steps for the platform

“We think of the platform as the heartbeat of this party. All of our messaging, our lobbying, and our support of candidates is guided by it” said Robbins.

The next steps will be a survey of attendees and county Democrats to prioritize the legislative action items. It will then be delivered to Democratic office holders and will guide our lobbying efforts during the upcoming legislative sessions.

Read the 2020 MultDems Platform: multdems.org/platform

Comparing Democratic Humor and Republican Humor

As Democrats, we own comedy. Let’s just compare.

Republican funny

Richard Nixon saying "Sock it to me."

Democrat funny

Barack Obama saying "Obama out" and dropping the mic.

So join us to flex our laugh muscles as we warm up for 2020! This is a fundraiser for your hard-working county Democratic party, but you will hardly notice.

Comedy, Candidates, and Cocktails on October 12

Comedy and politics go together. The Multnomah Democrats, with the help of some of our funniest friends, are going to celebrate that bond at our second annual Comedy, Candidates, and Cocktails.

The name says it all: along with four great comics, local politicians and will mingle and share the stage at the North Portland Eagles Club [Map]. Doors at 7pm.

Comedy, Candidates and Cocktails flyer. Tickets are on sale now, show is October 12. Hosted by Senator Shemia Fagan. multdems.org/comedynight

“Unfunny presidents only serve one term, if they win an election at all.”

– Senator John McCain, 2008 (How did that work out, Senator?)

Hosted by Senator Shemia Fagan, who is not always exactly strait laced herself.

Donate to Multnomah Democrats

Our party runs on your energy. Thank you for contributing!

Join us for the 2019 Pride Festival and Parade

Share in the celebration of the Portland Waterfront Pride Festival and Pride Parade 2019!

Here it is! On June 15 and 16, we celebrate one of the most important festivals of the year in Portland and, with the 50th anniversary of Stonewall, it is a powerful year to get involved. Participate with your local Democratic Party in the event! Join us for the parade or help staff the booth! If you can, read on about being a parade monitor.

Our booth at the Waterfront Park festival will introduce Oregonians to our policies and to the 2020 Democratic candidates.

Give people the chance to register people to vote! It’s really fun to interact with Pride-goers and important for our party to be present at this party!

Parade goers at Portland Pride festival carrying a sign reading "Love is love is love."

When: Saturday, June 15 and Sunday, June 16.

Staff the booth

Saturday choose one of these four shifts:

  • 9 to noon (includes set up)
  • 11:45 to 3:00 pm
  • 2:45 to 6:00
  • 5:45 to 9:00 (includes clean up)

Sunday choose one of these three shifts:

  • 10:30 to 1:00 pm
  • 12:45 to 4:00
  • 3:45 to 7:00 (includes take down).

March in the Parade on Sunday

Be in the center of it all, and come dressed to show your pride! Gather with us at 10am. The parade goes from 11am to 1pm.

Interested?

Reach out to  or just reply to this email and let us know when you can help out. Please include your shift preference, and if you’ll also be marching in the parade. We will send you a confirmation email and directions to the booth and parade.

Be a Parade Monitor

All parade groups must choose Parade Monitors, responsible for knowing and communicating the parade rules.  Be a monitor to encourage a safe experience for all participants.

Let know if you can be a monitor. We need one monitor for every 25 marchers

Monitor training is MANDATORY, and will be held at Anymeeting.com on the following dates: 

June 11, 2019: 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.
June 13, 2019: 1 p.m. – 2 p.m.

Need Accomodations?

Anyone needing special attention because of a temporary or permanent disability that makes walking an issue to please contact me at either  or (503) 412-9957. Please don’t hesitate to call with any questions or concerns!

Decal on car reading "House Speaker Tina Kotek" and "Disarm Hate."

The Democratic Party of Multnomah County strives to be welcoming and accessible to all. If you or someone you know require ADA or any other accommodations to attend one of our events please contact us to tell us how to make your attendance possible. 

Join us at the Holiday Fundraiser! Saturday December 1st!

Winter Fundraiser Holiday Party!

YOU’RE INVITED

Democratic Party of Oregon Annual Holiday Fundraiser
December 1, 2018

As in the past, the Multnomah County Democrats are pleased to co-host the Holiday Fundraising Party at the 4th Quarter State Central Committee Meeting. We invite you to attend.

Location: Northeast Portland (exact address provided when you purchase a ticket)
Time: 6:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Ticket Price: $35 – includes buffet dinner and all the festivities

JOIN IN THE FUN!

It’s a great evening for a worthy cause as we empower voters and fight for our values, not to mention, keep the lights on!

Purchase tickets at: Holiday Party Tickets

Or, if you can’t attend, but would like to support us, please consider donating HERE.

Raffle items are happily accepted through Tuesday, November 27. The donation form with the details can be found HERE.

Thank you for supporting the Multnomah County Democrats.

Thank you Celsi Sponsors!

Celsi Celebration - We Rise Together!

We thank our sponsors for their generous support:

Senator Ron Wyden
Senator Jeff Merkley
Congressman Earl Blumenauer
Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici
IBEW, Local 48
Friends of Mazzara’s
IATSE Internatonal and District 1
Joint Council of Teamsters 37
Morel Ink/Bill Dickey
Willamette Women Democrats
Lurelle Robbins
Tom Sincic
Lisa Wenzlick
UFCW 555
Shemia Fagan
Steve March
Sherry Andrus
State Representatives Tina Kotek, Rob Nosse, and Barbara Smith Warner
NW Carpenters
State Senator Michael Dembrow and State Reps Alissa Keny-Guyer, Tawna Sanchez, and Carla Piluso
 
Marcia and Howard Schneider
State Representative Jeff Reardon
 

We also thank our generous scholarship donors:

Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian
Mark Ulanowicz
Chip Shields
Laury Girt

Your contributions matter! Away from the thunder of national politics, your local Democratic Party organization is critical to making and keeping our state Blue.

Join the Celsi Celebration and support your Democratic Party.

WHEN

Saturday, March 10, 2018
Doors open at 5:30 pm for everyone
Dinner and Program*: 7:00 – 9:00 pm
*Includes silent auction, awards ceremony, and Keynote address.

WHERE

Hilton Hotel, 921 SW 6th Ave., Portland, OR 97204

Space is Limited!

Buy Tickets Here

Come to the Picnic!

The MultDems’ annual picnic wil be held on Thursday, July 14 at Red Sunset Park, 2400 NE Red Sunset Dr in Gresham.  Come and meet your fellow Democrats – the fun begins at 6 PM with great food and camaraderie.  Feel free to bring a potluck dish to share, or contact John Vandermosten, , to sign up to bring supplies. Multdems will have hamburgers, hot dogs and veggie burgers on the grill.

2016 Celsi Celebration

In this important election year, the Multnomah County Democratic Party is proud to announce our biggest party and fundraiser of the year: The Celsi Celebration!

Named in honor of a super-volunteer and Party leader, Dick Celsi, it’s a time to celebrate good Democrats working to make people’s lives better – and have a good time with Democratic friends. 

Keynote Speaker: Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum

Saturday, May 21, 2016 at the Riverside Golf & Country Club, 8105 NE 33rd Drive in Portland, 6:00 to 9:30 p.m.

Be a part of it: