Politics Columns & Blogs

Democratic Party needs ‘monumental cultural change,’ Idaho party leader says

Sally Boynton Brown, the executive director of the Idaho Democratic Party, who is running for national Democratic Party chair. Photo taken Dec. 21, 2016.
Sally Boynton Brown, the executive director of the Idaho Democratic Party, who is running for national Democratic Party chair. Photo taken Dec. 21, 2016. Idaho Statesman

Sally Boynton Brown, the Idaho Democratic executive director vying to become the party’s national chairwoman, Thursday offered a multi-part plan that includes a “monumental cultural change” for the ailing party.

Democrats plan to choose a new chairperson next month. Six candidates, including Jaime Harrison, South Carolina Democratic chairman, are seeking the job.

They plan to participate Friday in the first of a series of four party forums. Scheduled to also participate in the event in downtown Phoenix, starting at 1 p.m. local time, are candidates Thomas Perez, the U.S. secretary of labor; Raymond Buckley, New Hampshire Democratic chairman; Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., and Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Indiana.

Brown offered a plan Thursday with four pillars, involving purpose, partnership, culture and structure, that stressed how the party should build itself from the grass roots.

It is a blueprint that redefines our purpose, and includes the concrete steps that will result in election wins on all levels.

Sally Boynton Brown, Idaho Democratic Party executive director, on her plan to revitalize the national party

“Creating a service-oriented, innovative, resilient DNC for the 21st century will require a monumental cultural change,” she said. “It will require everyone in the Democratic Party to start looking deeply at our own actions, assumptions and judgments.”

That means changes in the entire party structure, governing documents and infrastructure, she said.

“We must become a service-based organization designed to meet the needs of our national institutions, 57 state party organizations, our general membership and every single citizen who needs an advocate on their behalf,” she said.

Brown, an Idaho native, worked for the state party as its field director, communication director and, since March 2012, executive director.

David Lightman: 202-383-6101, @lightmandavid

  Comments