The Hawaii for Bernie campaign is making a transition from a loose network of unofficial supporters into an official and structured campaign. I have been appointed by the national campaign to be their authorized representative in Hawaii. But the running of the campaign has to be a shared responsibility, a collective effort and we need your active participation
Please read through the notes from our membership meeting, held Tuesday, Jan 5th at the Makiki District Park in Honolulu.And think of which activities you would like to help with. We can win Hawaii for Bernie. We just need to Plan Our Work and Work Our Plan..
NOTE: This is an outline shared with people attending the meeting. The black letters were the original text. Comments in blue were added after the meeting. In reading through these notes, you will undoubtedly think up some good ideas to bring to the next meeting or to share on the Facebook pages.
Hawaii for Bernie, Oahu Meeting
January 5, 2016 5:30- 7:00 pm Makiki Library
Purpose of meeting to bring together people already working, but to come up with more structure, better coordination, communication, sharing of information. Hope to establish committees or “work teams” plus a “coordinating council” or a “steering Committee.” Set up regular meetings for BOTH core group and membership.
We failed to have a few of the most active Oahu-based Sanders supporters at the meeting. We need to do a better job of publicizing meetings in advance. Not just Facebook, but emails as well. We did set up a “tech committee” to help pull together and manage a statewide supporter data base. They had a follow-up meeting last night.
A meeting for the “steering committee” is set for Wed., Jan 13 at 6pm at UH Manoa Campus Center room 308. It is opening to all Sanders supporters. I think we are going to have to re-conceptualize the name and function of this mid-sized group. We do need to engage as many supporters who are able to help with planning and execution of the many tasks for the campaign. But we also need a much smaller group to serve as the steering committee, capable of making decisions quickly.
We have not yet set the date for the next membership meeting, but it will be in a late january.
Reminder, Oahu has over 2/3 of the votes, but is NOT the same as the State. Need to strengthen ties, share info, between islands. Conference call, email list, etc.
This remains a challenge. For now, we need to ask each island to form their own coordinating council and pull together Sanders volunteers on their island into a island-wide network. On large islands, like Hawaii and Maui, this may be hard to do with in-person meetings. Or they may have to divide the island into regions. But we need to have island (or county) level organizations capable of communicating with and organizing the Sanders supporters while remaining in contact with the state organization.
Alan Crammate of Maui has been conducting a statewide conference call. That is a helpful means of communication, but it would be swamped if too many people were to be on the calls, so we will have to see when and how best to use conference-calling.
2 1/2 months to March 26 Caucus and Precinct meetings
What to expect at the March 26th meeting:
Presidential Preference Poll (aka “caucus”)
Precinct meeting, electing officers/delegates, district meeting
We now have available an online “Bern Advisory” tool to help voters find their precinct and state house district. Please check it out:
It also provides an outline of what to expect at each step, from the March 26th Presidential Preference Poll vote (also known as the “caucus”) to the precinct election of officers and state/county delegates to the state convention.
Once the party releases the list of March 26th meeting locations, we will also publish that.
How you can help at the meeting: help the party? Help the campaign: vote monitors, observers
This was skipped over. We need election monitors for the campaign at each district/precinct meeting to help vouch for the accuracy and security of the PPP vote. In addition, Sanders supporters should volunteer to help at the March 26th meeting. They will need help with set-up and clean up after. They may need parking attendants, people to help with sign-ins, directing people to their precinct meeting, registering voters and signing up new party members. We need to encourage volunteers for these functions.
We need to use the two and a half months to pull together a well-organized campaign
Reports on What Work is Now being Done
List activities: signwaving, Farmers Markets, Voter Registration, Phone-banking into early states, clipboarding opportunities
Hear from those doing the work. What help do they need, what have they learned, how to expand the work?
We had very brief statements from people who had been engaged in these activities. We need to figure out how we can provide resources and volunteers to support and expand these activities. We had Liam Clive, a staffer with the national campaign who is presently living in Kaneohe, give an enthusiastic account Voter ID phone-banking into the early states. The UH group has also been holding phone-banking parties.
What additional work needs to be done to build a campaign?
Data management: form a team to develop policy re access/use, gather contact
information and manage the data
Compiling a statewide data base of Sanders supporters is CRUCIAL. This, combined with MailChimp, will allow us to send out email blasts to all Sanders supporters in a given area: statewide, by county, island, region or House district. Every group that has names of Sanders supporters has to understand the importance of pooling that info. For now, we do not yet have access to the national campaigns list of Sanders supporters living in Hawaii. Hopefully, that will be rectified soon. Meanwhile, we must compile and improve our own list.
We set up a committee to work on that and they met last night.
ONE IMMEDIATE THING: please encourage every Sanders supporter in the state to go to:
This will be the official website for the Bernie campaign in Hawaii. They can input their contact information there. People MUST understand, we need everyone legal VOTING address, not just emails, mailing addresses, etc.
Email Blast via MailChimp
The Hawaii for Bernie MailChimp account taps into our supporter database and allows us to send targetted emails. Local campaign groups will be able to use it to contact Bernie supporters on their island or in their constituency (e.g., Students for Bernie). If you are organizing a signholding along a highway, you will be able to send an email to all the Bernie supporters who live in the area to get them to help. Same for a house-party, etc.
Up until now, people have been digging into their pockets to pay for flyers, signs, paint supplies, t-shirts, buttons, stickers, etc. For awhile, we will have to continue with people taking their own initiative, to pay for projects they decide upon. But as we transition into the official campaign, we will be standardizing our financial record-keeping as well as fundraising. We are waiting for guidance from the national campaign, but Dan Curran did volunteer to serve as our treasurer.
Flyers, T-Shirts, bumperstickers, buttons, clipboards, banners, yard signs, downloadable files for printing
We hope to get shipment of more of these essential supplies from the national campaign. Some recent shipments from the national campaign to individuals have been VERY SLOW, despite more money being paid for expedited shipping.
On t-shirts, some individuals have fronted money to have t-shirts with a local design printed in time for the Oahu MLK Day parade. They will need donations back from people who would like a shirt.
House parties or Meetups
We did not go into this, except in passing. But we need to pull together volunteers in different regions of the island to build the network and recruit volunteers. Debate parties can serve as an excuse, but, as we know, there are only a few of those and they last for hours, making the organizing of volunteers difficult. So we need other reasons. The format might include a short Bernie video, then an explanation of the campaign, How to Vote for Bernie in Hawaii, getting people to register to vote and to join the party, also to gather names and contact info to plug into our database.
We need to develop a small pool of people able to give short presentations and answer questions at these house parties. I can make myself available, but we have others able to step forward and serve this function.
Debate Watch Parties?
The UH Student Group will be sponsoring a Debate Watch Party on Sunday January 17th. Details to be confirmed.
MLK Day Parade—very important opportunity: clipboarding, wear shirts, distribute handouts, get recruits during staging, parade, afterwards, tabling at Kapiolani Park
The Oahu campaign sees this as an excellent opportunity to inform a sympathetic population of the presence of a Sanders campaign in Hawaii, to collect the names and contact info of supporters, to pass out info and recruit volunteers. Also to distribute t-shirts and bumperstickers for a donation. We developed a quarter-page handout specifically for the MLK Day activities.
Opening Day of the Legislature
There will be a large gathering of environmentalists, Hawaiian justice activists at a rally held in the Rotunda of the state Capitol on opening day. We will be clipboarding to gather names, giving away the small stickers as we hope hundreds of people will enter the offices of legislators as they do their office visits and the legislators and there staff will see a flood of Bernie stickers on the people.
Wednesday evening SCC meeting for those interested in watching, and learning about, the internal governance of the Hawaii Party
This meeting is not for everyone. But a subset of the Bernie supporters will want to learn more about how the Democratic Party operates. Attending this meeting will help acclimatize our supporters to the party leadership and vice-versa. Come and learn and begin to get comfortable dealing with the Party. It is not so mysterious and not so scary. If you find you need to assert yourself within the Party, it is helpful to learn the players.
Other Upcoming Events as opportunities for clipboarding?
“Clipboarding” is well-suited for the special circumstances of Hawaii caucus system. It consists of wearing a shirt (or button) so the people KNOW you are a Bernie person as you approach. You ask if they have heard of Senator Sanders. If they seem open or supportive, you show them the “FOUR EASY STEPS” handout so they can understand how, and when, to vote for Bernie in Hawaii. If they seem supportive, you ask if they would like to sign up as a Bernie supporter. If they seem sufficiently open to Bernie, you give them the handout. But don't waste it on those who do not seem like a likely prospect.
Clipboarding can be done at public events or locations. Hawaii has about 660,000 registered voters. Most of whom are vote Democratic. So if HALF the voters are Democratic-inclined, and we assume support for Bernie in Hawaii is at least at the national level among Democratic voters, then there are at least 100,000 voters in Hawaii who are already pro-Bernie. Here is the math:
660,000 registered voters ÷ 2 = 330,000 Democratic registered voters x 30% = 100,000
The highest turnout in a previous Hawaii presidential caucus was 37,400 in 2008 for the Obama-Clinton race. Obama was a Favorite Son of Hawaii, so the caucus meetings were swamped. We will NOT have a turnout that large this year. The turnout here will depend upon what is happening nationally. If the race is close, it will be higher. But we can plan for a turnout in the range of 20,000, plus or minus. If we are able to turn out 15,000 Sanders supporters, we will win the Hawaii Caucus decisively.
So our job is not to convert Clinton supporters (or argue with Trump supporters), but to shake the trees for the “low-hanging fruit.” We have 100,000 pro-Sanders voter waiting to learn HOW and WHEN to vote for Sanders in Hawaii. Hence, the key elements of our campaign are the FOUR EASY STEPS and collecting their names and contact info for our database.
Becoming a delegate to the State Convention— why is this important?
This conversation was skipped over in the interests of time, but needs discussion.
Becoming a Delegate to the National Convention
There was not much discussion on this directly, but I did go over the breakdown of the delegates. I have attached that chart to this report.
Need for outreach to a DIVERSE audience: How to target various constituencies to broaden our reach? The campaign needs to reach out to a wide range of constituencies. Both because we are bound to do Affirmative Action under the Rules of the DNC. But also because it forces us to stretch our “comfort zone” to try to recruit among a variety of ethnic and demographic groups.
I have attached a chart of the Affirmative Action Targets for various, identifiable groups within the Democratic electorate. People need to understand the AA dimension of runnign a successful, and fair, campaign. The Oahu group was quite diverse. But there are still some groups we will need to do conscious outreach to.
Questions, Comments, suggestions
Closing: Need to continue taking individual initiative, creativity. But also to create a statewide infrastructure to provide support.
Next membership meeting:
We had been unable to confirm a reservation for a meeting place in time to announce it. But we will be setting a meeting for late January, sometime after the MLK Day parade. (Maybe we should announce it on the handout for the parade?
Here is the group at the end of the meeting. There are 43 people in this picture. There had been about 60 people earlier.
Here is a handout from the meeting:
HAWAII’s NATIONAL DELEGATES
Dem Gov. David Ige
US Senator Brian Schatz
US Senator Mazie Hirono
US Rep. Tulsi Gabbard
US Rep. Mark Takai
State Party Chair ___________
State Party Vice-Chair___________
National Committeewoman Jadine Nielson
National Committeeman Russell Okata
25 Pledged Delegates (“Pledged” means these seats are allotted according to the
March 26th vote and the delegates are bound by that vote)
16 District Level Delegates
8 Delegates from the First Congressional District
8 Delegates from the Second CD
6 At-Large (Statewide) Delegates
3 PLEO Delegates (“Party Leader or Elected Official”)
AFFIRMATIVE ACTION TARGETS
The campaigns and the Party are required to do outreach to all sectors of the Democratic voting base in the state. The goal is to have a delegation which looks somewhat representative of that voting base. Towards that end, the Party studied recent voting patterns, consulted with pollsters and came up with these “Demographic Targets.” These are goals, not quotas.
Today January 5th
January 17th Democratic Debate
January 18th 8 am staging, March Begins at 10am Assemble at Magic Island Parking Lot
Sanders supporters will be marching with the Democratic Party contingent.
Parade ends at Kapiolani Park, where we will table and clipboard. There is a rally and booths.
January 18th MLK Celebration at Church of the Crossroads in the Evening
January 20th Opening Day at the Legislature, Come, wear Bernie shirts
January 20th Late Afternoon Democratic Party State Central Committee Meeting
Location: Lyon Associates,45 N. King St, #501 UPSTAIRS
March 26th, 1 pm Caucus Meeting Presidential Preference Poll starts at 1 pm, followed by precinct organization meeting and election of officers and delegates.
Late April, Early May-- County Conventions
Pre-Convention Committee Meetings
May 28th -29th Democratic Party of Hawaii State Convention, Waikiki
July 25th-28th Democratic National Convention, Philadelphia, Inside and Outside Activities