Rusty Hicks for California Democratic Party Chair Convention Floor Remarks:
I traveled 25,330 miles – going to all 58 counties in 58 days – to get here today.
And while I didn’t get to meet each one of you… the Delegates… I sure tried.
I did it because of who you are… and who I am.
We do the real work. We register our neighbors to vote… and to get them to the polls. We make the phone calls. We knock on the doors. We send the texts, the emails, and the handwritten notes.
During my time in the Los Angeles Labor Movement, I organized that work to elect hundreds of Democrats to public office. Many of you did just as much. And some of you did it in tougher, redder parts of the State.
We did it to make a difference in the public policies enacted into law… in our towns, our counties, our state, and our country.
And in 2018, California showed the nation what winning looks like… like 7 Blue Wave Members of Congress and we took the house!
So, when those we helped to elect… uphold a women’s right to choose, protect immigrants and refugees, fight for gender pay equity, and advance the fight against climate change… we should feel proud… take some credit… and hold those who made us promises accountable when they don’t keep their word!
I’ve led my campaign for Chair not by promising things… but by doing things.
I raised the money to register voters in the Central Valley to get rid of Trump’s #1 enabler, Kevin McCarthy, and his sidekick, Devin Nunes.
I formed a task force to develop a zero-tolerance policy to end the disgrace of sexual misconduct in our Party.
I shared how we doubled the number of women leaders in the Los Angeles Labor Movement… how we quintupled the number of young leaders… how 60% of our leaders are now people of color.
I told the story of real people power… how we built more affordable housing and created good jobs… how we protected hotel workers from sexual assault… and how raised the wages of nearly 1 million workers to $15 an hour.
I shared my own story… the story of a single mother who deferred her own dreams to give me a shot at reaching mine… [acknowledge mom] the story of meeting my own father at the age of 11 as he sat in a Texas prison… how his story inspired a second-chance program to place the formerly incarcerated, like Jason Thomas into good union construction jobs.
But, as proud as I am of our campaign, our Party is not a top-down organization. We are bottom-up… only as strong as our grassroots leaders, activists, and organizations.
You – the Delegates – are the leaders… the stewards… of our Party. Through your work and with your passion… you engage and empower more than 9 million Democrats to improve the lives of nearly 40 million Californians.
Today, our work is more important than ever before… a fight that unifies us all… removing Donald Trump in the White House in 2020!
So, while I’m a candidate for “Chair”, it would be my privilege to serve you… the leaders of our Party. Because in the end, it’s about building The Democratic Party You Lead.
I’d be honored to have your vote. And let’s get about the business of building a bigger, better, stronger Party. Let’s get to work!