Illinois Sen. Barack Obamas presumptive Democratic nomination for president and his list of possible running mates may be at the forefront of the minds of most Democrats as the partys national convention nears, but thousands are focusing on the partys platform and its overall stance going into the Nov. 4 general election.
Such is the case for Sequim native Marco Xavier Hermosillo. While he has a keen interest in how the nomination process will proceed, his role leading up to the Denver convention is to analyze the partys overall platform while reviewing suggested amendments from party leaders such as Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean and from the general public.
For the first time, the Democratic Party is trying to tear down some walls in the platform-making process to better include opinions from a broader base of party members, Hermosillo said. Voters will be able to take part in local ad hoc platform meetings where they can discuss and contribute comment toward the document that embodies the national partys values.
Hermosillo is a member of the Democratic Platform Committee, responsible for fielding requests for change and producing a final draft of the platform for delegates to vote on at the national convention in Denver on Aug. 25-28. Other groups such as the credentials committee and the rules committee will do similar analyses of their subjects.
The Sequim platform meeting will take place at 7 p.m. July 24 at the Dungeness Schoolhouse, 2781 Towne Road. The Jamestown/East Dungeness Democratic precincts are organizing the meeting so local Democrats can pitch-in on the platforms formation.
We started the Clallam County for Obama group and upon his presumptive nomination we received a message from his headquarters that we have local meetings to open up the platform creation process, said Sylvia Hancock. There was very little time to discuss at the county and state conventions, so the idea was to have a local meeting dedicated to platform discussions.
Other North Olympic Peninsula residents joining Hermosillo in Denver for the convention will be Julie Johnson, of Neah Bay, and Lori Macklin, of Port Townsend.
All three Democrats participated in their local presidential nomination caucuses, emerging as precinct delegates. Then, after a county, district and state convention, the two women became state delegates to the convention and Hermosillo was chosen to sit on the 186-member platform committee.
Johnson has sworn her delegate vote to New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton. Johnson is not only a representative of Clallam County and the state of Washington, she is also a representative of the tribes. She is an enrolled member of the Lummi Nation and is married to a member of the Makah Tribe.
Macklin will vote for Obama. She was the organizer of the Obama support network in Jefferson County. She will represent those living in a rural setting in the area as well as those struggling in other countries as a result of Americas trade policies.
Hermosillo grew up in Sequim and assumed an active role in the Democratic Party in Utah after finishing college. He served two terms as the state secretary of the Utah Democrats and is Washington state 24th Congressional Districts state committeeman, meaning he represents Clallam, Jefferson and part of Grays Harbor counties in the states Democratic committee.
It is so exciting to see such a diverse background representing the area and the party, said Hermosillo, who also served on the Utah Hispanic Legislative Task Force and Chamber of Commerce.
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