Dismayed by Trump, political activists vie for local offices

Democratic delegate race draws record crowd

Plenty of people probably want nothing to do with politics after last November's election, but for some it's exactly why they want to be more involved.

As a result of the withering presidential contest, the local California Democratic Party chapter is seeing a dramatic surge in citizen participation. The party's 24th Assembly District, which stretches from Woodside down to Sunnyvale, is expecting an unprecedented crowd to gather this weekend as it holds elections to pick new delegates to help guide the party's future platform.

This internal party pick normally doesn't generate much attention, but this year seems to be different due to the recent political turmoil. This time around, a total of 46 people are running for a delegate seat, making it by far the largest group of candidates ever, according to organizers.

"If every candidate just brought 10 friends, then we'd still have more than 400 people showing up," said Steve Chessin, a longtime party activist who serves as the district chapter's executive board member. "You've got a lot of people who weren't involved before this election, and they want to continue with their momentum."

The level of interest in the delegate election surpassed anything Chessin has previously seen, he said. Most past elections would draw maybe two dozen people to run for a delegate seat, he said.

There are several reasons for so much more enthusiasm to get involved this time, he said, and topping the list is the lingering shock from Donald Trump's victory, especially among California Democrats. Many newcomers seem to share an interest in helping the state Democratic party shield California from the national turn toward reactionary politics, Chessin said.

In addition, many supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders' unsuccessful primary bid are redirecting their energy toward local politics. Some of Mountain View's well-known political figures in this group have formed a "Grass Roots Slate" for the delegate race, including City Councilman Lenny Siegel, former council candidates Lucas Ramirez and Ken "Kacey" Carpenter, and former Assemblywoman Sally Lieber.

Other slates have also formed for city-specific delegates and candidates being endorsed by party leaders such as state Assemblyman Mark Berman and state Sen. Jerry Hill.

This enthusiasm isn't unique to the Midpeninsula. Officials with the California Democratic Party are reporting the largest turnout they've ever seen across the state. Party officials reported that about 4,000 people statewide were seeking delegate seats, said Alyson Abramowitz, the lead organizer for the 24th District election.

"There's always a certain amount of enthusaism that comes with the election, but the level is dramatically greater this time -- people have perceived the stakes are much greater," she said. "People are saying they're concerned about not having a democracy anymore. I've never heard that concern before in my life, and I've been hearing it over and over again."

Once picked, delegates are tasked with picking the state Democratic party's leadership positions, shaping the party's platform and endorsing candidates. In total, the 24th Assembly District will elected 14 delegates, evenly split between men and women.

Along with Assembly-district elections, delegates are also chosen by county-specific committees and through appointment by elected officials.

The 24th Assembly District delegate election is scheduled to begin with candidate speeches at 10:30 a.m. at the Hillview Community Center at 97 Hillview Ave. in Los Altos. Candidate statements and more information about the event can be found at


27 people like this
Posted by Withheld Name For Fear of Reprisals
a resident of Rex Manor
on Jan 9, 2017 at 3:20 pm

So...Democracy elects Trump but "People are saying they're concerned about not having a democracy anymore." but they weren't concerned with Obama's executive orders, and especially when the DNC bounced Bernie?

That "level of interest" is probably the same folks who said in voter survey polls they would vote for Hillary and then voted for Trump.

That's politics!

26 people like this
Posted by Trumpists
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 9, 2017 at 3:55 pm

Withheld Name, don't worry, this is a safe space. We know how sensitive and fearful Trump voters are.

I suggest you look at the scoreboard in California and the popular vote. Your boy got demolished here, so there wasn't a dearth of Clinton voters. Thankfully, we have the Democratic party here and the state government to fight back against the incoming administration. Conservatives are big fans of states' rights, right?

10 people like this
Posted by Steve
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 9, 2017 at 4:12 pm

Why bother? California is basically a one party state, and particularly so in the bay area where not being a Democrat is an oddity

3 people like this
Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jan 9, 2017 at 4:22 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

Speaking as a registered independent voter, who is definitely pro business, and wanting our political system to survive, I have great concerns regarding the selective enforcement of laws under the Trump administration.

I consider myself a true conservative, meaning if legislation was properly voted and signed by a President or Governor or ballot measures after properly voted on and certified, they must be equally enforced. No preferential treatment can be allowed for anyone.

But I believe we are about to see the federal government simply operate with no sense of reality. You have all the positions responsible for enforcement of laws being staffed by those opposed to the existence of the laws. This is a clear vulnerability in the U.S. Constitution unfortunately.

The Constitution was written at a time that does not reflect today. This is a very dangerous issue. Remember it was written before the completed expansion of the U.S. in the North American Continent. Life was very simple, the US needed to manage to grow food, create shelter, establish uniform practices of government, and defend against STATE based enemies.

WOW is today's world completely different. It appears we need to rewrite the US Constitution at this time because the language of the current one has been interpreted in so man different ways that it's consistency is starting to be questioned. Just looks at the arguments regarding staffing the Supreme Court today.

I once stated that there was a 50% chance that there needed to be a U.S. Constitution Version 2.0. However, the neccessity seems to have reached 100% now.

The Chinese curse seems to be valid now: "May you live in interesting times".

Boy are these times "INTERESTING".

4 people like this
Posted by MyOpinion
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Jan 9, 2017 at 6:06 pm

MyOpinion is a registered user.

All those Trump supporters who say the Dems are being sore losers just do not seem bothered by the fact that Trump is kissing up to Putin,admires Assange, does not believe intelligence reports and continually issues inane tweets, such as on Jan 6th... "Anna Wintour came to my office at Trump Tower to ask me to meet with the editors of Conde Nast & Steven Newhouse, a friend. Will go this AM." seriously, what is he 10 years old? Why do we need to know this? Maybe he is appointing her to be Director of the Fashion Police. The entire thing is like one big long episoe of SNL.

In case you think that tweet was fake news...I got it straight from the source Web Link

4 people like this
Posted by Hope
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 9, 2017 at 9:02 pm

Hope is a registered user.

I'm still waiting for some one to explain what America will be like when it's "Great Again"

Ask trump supporters and I get no answers or vague ones?

Anybody out there can answer me?

14 people like this
Posted by To Hope
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Jan 9, 2017 at 10:24 pm

It's in the same Hope & Change from the past 8 years.

If you don't already know, no one can explain it to you.

17 people like this
Posted by mari posa
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jan 9, 2017 at 10:51 pm

Democrats, get over it! We, the People, have chosen a Republican president. Get over it! We, the People who voted for him, trust he will be the best president the country has ever had before. Surely, you don't even have to be any good to be better than Obama. Shame on the democrats and other people who instead of supporting our new president they are laying in front of the cars in the highways and getting big posters to attract idiots like them. Get over it! Support our new president democratically elected.

18 people like this
Posted by Trumpists
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 9, 2017 at 11:20 pm

Hey mari posa,

Just admit your guy lost the popular vote and doesn't have the support of the majority of Americans. And the less said about how he did in California, oof, the better.

I'm confident that the conservative respect for states' rights will shine through, and your boy will mess up the rest of America while allowing the great state of California to be a shining beacon of progress and wealth.

15 people like this
Posted by Tony Thur
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Jan 9, 2017 at 11:22 pm

Well said, Mari Posa, I am so glad to hear from the Trump supporters! Enough of silence, Trump was democratically elected. Do the democrats want to reverse the process? Too bad that their liberal mind is being challenged! It is time to have our country ruled under order and common sense. Enough of nonsense! Trump is our president. Let all the People of this great nation support and respect him. Isn't that what the American people suppose to do?

11 people like this
Posted by Robert Berro
a resident of North Bayshore
on Jan 9, 2017 at 11:29 pm

Let us not forget, Democrats, tat Trump lost the popular vote of California. I believe that not only California but the rest of America will thrive under the administration of our democratically elected President Trump. Como on, little guys! Let us give him a chance and support him.

8 people like this
Posted by Trumpists
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jan 9, 2017 at 11:30 pm

[Post removed due to disrespectful comment or offensive language]

2 people like this
Posted by Company, Inc
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Jan 9, 2017 at 11:32 pm

[Post removed due to disrespectful comment or offensive language]

10 people like this
Posted by Trumpists
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 9, 2017 at 11:37 pm

[Post removed due to disrespectful comment or offensive language]

Like this comment
Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jan 10, 2017 at 1:46 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

WOW this subject has a lot of people upset.

I just think its going to be a WILD ride.

Trump seems to replaying the Nixon playbook.

1 person likes this
Posted by Gary Bradley
a resident of Waverly Park
on Jan 10, 2017 at 4:56 pm

Gary Bradley is a registered user.

All that needs to be said is that this election has proven to be a golden opportunity to shower our fellow Americans with support. The trickle-down policies of the Republicans need to be followed up with relief for all Americans. Those of us who can stand up, must, and to Donald Trump, I say, ur in for a fight.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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