Convention News — Raging Against The Machine

Following months of preparation, two of Rhode Island’s more progressive politicos — Rep. Aaron Regunberg (D-Providence) and former Rep. David Segal (D-Providence)* — have been taking an active role this week in shaping the future of the Democratic party.

Edward Fitzpatrick writes about Regunberg’s efforts on the Rules Committee to eliminate the much maligned superdelegate system in today’s ProJo.

Regunburg’s proposal didn’t make it to the convention floor on Monday, but he said delegates did agree to a compromise proposal aimed at binding about two-thirds of future superdelegates to the results of state primaries and caucuses.

“What we got in the rules committee was not a total victory,” Regunberg, D-Providence, said by phone from Philadelphia on Monday. “But I feel good about the partial victory. It is a significant step closer to the one-person, one-vote principle that our political system is based on.”

In a recent email update Regunberg stated, a “unity commission” will be formed that would “dramatically limit the role of convention superdelegates” and make recommendations for the 2020 primaries. This followed 12 hours of organizing and negotiating. Twelve hours! That is my definition of hell and I’m so glad there is someone willing to do it so I don’t have to. So big props to Regunberg for his herculean efforts — he also credits the efforts of the “many committee members and grassroots groups (shout-out to Demand Progress, led by RI’s own David Segal)” for getting to this compromise. (Steve Ahlquist has more at RI Future.)

So what has Dave been up to while Aaron was slogging away in meetings all day? Hanging out and acting all cool with guitarist and committed anarchist Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine. They oppose the TPP and have been organizing to stop it.

The TPP is an awful trade deal that threatens Net Neutrality, ends protections against Wall Street recklessness, and allows corporations to sue the U.S. government in secret tribunals to overturn laws passed by Congress.

But the corporate lobbyists pushing this deal have a secret plan to push it through Congress during the lame-duck session after the election, when it’s too late to hold politicians who vote for it accountable.

Hillary opposes it. Bernie opposes it. Most congressional Dems oppose it. And yet the delegates to the Democratic National Convention have blocked opposition to the TPP in the party platform.

Segal is not done with this battle and has a plan. “To stop the TPP and raise awareness about how bad this deal really is, we’re organizing a concert series called “Rock Against the TPP” with Tom Morello from the band Rage Against the Machine. Will you make a donation to help bring the tour to as many cities around the country as possible?”

*Segal is also a co-founder of The Providence Daily Dose and I have no idea whether he and Morello have actually done more than chat on the phone.

**Tom Morello’s Prophets of Rage is also touring this August and September. Maybe there is some overlap? Dunno.

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