- Democratic National Committee
Democratic National Committee Founded 1848 Headquarters Washington, D.C., U.S. Key people Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Chairwoman Website democrats.org
The Democratic National Committee (DNC) is the principal organization governing the United States Democratic Party on a day to day basis. While it is responsible for overseeing the process of writing a platform every four years, the DNC's central focus is on campaign and political activity in support of Democratic Party candidates, and not on public policy. The DNC was established at the 1848 Democratic National Convention.
The Democratic National Committee provides national leadership for the Democratic Party of the United States. It is responsible for promoting the Democratic political platform, as well as coordinating fundraising and election strategy. Shortly after his inauguration, Barack Obama transferred his Obama For America organization to the DNC, along with its 13 million person email list, as restrictions prevented him from taking it with him to the White House. Renamed Organizing For America, the organization also controls the BarackObama.com domain and website and is expected to work closely with Obama's New Media Director Macon Phillips, who will manage the WhiteHouse.gov – formerly Change.gov – website, though Phillips' duties technically fall under the White House umbrella, not the DNC.
The DNC's main counterpart is the Republican National Committee.
The CBA is responsible for articulating and promoting the Democratic platform and coordinating party organizational activity. When the President is a Democrat, the party generally works closely with the President. In presidential elections it supervises the national convention and, both independently and in coordination with the presidential candidate, raises funds, commissions polls, and coordinates campaign strategy. Following the selection of a party nominee, the public funding laws permit the national party to coordinate certain expenditures with the nominee, but additional funds are spent on general, party-building activities. There are state committees in every state, as well as local committees in most cities, wards, and towns (and, in most states, counties).
The chairperson of the DNC (currently U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida) is elected by vote of members of the Democratic National Committee. The DNC is composed of the chairs and vice-chairs of each state Democratic Party Committee, two hundred members apportioned among the states based on population and generally elected either on the ballot by primary voters or by the State Democratic Party Committee, a number of elected officials serving in an ex-officio capacity, and a variety of representatives of major Democratic Party constituencies.
The DNC establishes rules for the caucuses and primaries which choose delegates to the Democratic National Convention, but the caucuses and primaries themselves are most often run not by the DNC but instead by each state. All DNC members are superdelegates (i.e. unpledged delegates) to the Democratic National Convention and can influence a close Presidential race. Outside of the process of nominating a Presidential candidate, the DNC's role in actually selecting candidates to run on the Democratic Party ticket is minimal.
The chairperson is a superdelegate for life.
In the 2001–2005 election cycle, the DNC and its affiliated committees (which includes numerous local committees and committees formed to coordinate expenditures for specific districts or races) raised a total of US $162,062,084, 42% of which was hard money. The largest contributor, with US $9,280,000 was the Saban Capital Group, founded in 2001 by Haim Saban, who also founded Fox Family group. Fred Eychaner, the owner of Newsweb Corporation, gave the second highest amount of money to the DNC and its affiliates, US $7,390,000. The third largest contributor was Steve Bing of Shangri-La Entertainment, who gave US $6,700,000.
In 2006, the DNC raised a total of US $61,141,823, all of it hard money. Most contributions came from small donors, giving less than $250, who accounted for over 80% of total dollars raised in the first half of 2006. The three largest individual contributors were law firm Hill Wallack ($100,000), development firm Jonathan Rose & Co. ($100,000), and investment firm Bain Capital ($53,400).
The DNC also relies on the monthly contributions of over 35,000 small-dollar donors through what is known as the Democracy Bonds program, set up by Howard Dean in the summer of 2005.
In June 2008, after Senator Barack Obama became the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, Dean announced that the DNC, emulating the Obama campaign, would no longer accept donations from federal lobbyists.
Current DNC leadership
- National Chair: Debbie Wasserman Schultz
- Vice Chairs:
- Mike Honda, U.S. Representative from California
- Linda Chavez-Thompson, former Executive Vice President of the AFL-CIO
- Donna Brazile, campaign manager for Al Gore's 2000 presidential campaign
- Raymond Buckley, President of the Association of State Democratic Chairs, Chair of the New Hampshire Democratic Party
- Treasurer: Andrew Tobias, businessman, author, and financial self-help guru
- Secretary: Alice Travis Germond
- Executive Director: Patrick Gaspard
- Communications Director: Brad Woodhouse
In addition, a National Advisory Board exists for purposes of fundraising and advising the executive. The present chair is Elizabeth Frawley Bagley, former U.S. Ambassador to Portugal.
DNC National Chairpersons
Chairperson Term State Benjamin F. Hallett (1848–1852) Massachusetts Robert Milligan McLane (1852–1856) Maryland David Allen Smalley (1856–1860) Vermont August Belmont (1860–1872) New York Augustus Schell (1872–1876) New York Abram Stevens Hewitt (1876–1877) New York William H. Barnum (1877–1889) Connecticut Calvin Stewart Brice (1889–1892) Ohio William F. Harrity (1892–1896) Pennsylvania James K. Jones (1896–1904) Arkansas Thomas Taggart (1904–1908) Indiana Norman E. Mack (1908–1912) New York William F. McCombs (1912–1916) New York Vance C. McCormick (1916–1919) Pennsylvania Homer S. Cummings (1919–1920) Connecticut George White (1920–1921) Ohio Cordell Hull (1921–1924) Tennessee Clem L. Shaver (1924–1928) West Virginia John J. Raskob (1928–1932) New York James A. Farley (1932–1940) New York Edward J. Flynn (1940–1943) New York Frank C. Walker (1943–1944) Pennsylvania Robert E. Hannegan (1944–1947) Missouri J. Howard McGrath (1947–1949) Rhode Island William M. Boyle (1949–1951) Missouri Frank E. McKinney (1951–1952) Indiana Stephen Mitchell (1952–1955) Illinois Paul M. Butler (1955–1960) Indiana Henry M. Jackson (1960–1961) Washington John Moran Bailey (1961–1968) Connecticut Lawrence F. O'Brien (1968–1969) Massachusetts Fred R. Harris (1969–1970) Oklahoma Lawrence F. O'Brien (1970–1972) Massachusetts Jean Westwood (1972) Utah Robert S. Strauss (1972–1977) Texas Kenneth M. Curtis (1977–1978) Maine John C. White (1978–1981) Texas Charles T. Manatt (1981–1985) California Paul G. Kirk (1985–1989) Massachusetts Ron Brown (1989–1993) New York David Wilhelm (1993–1994) Ohio Debra DeLee (1994–1995) Massachusetts Christopher J. Dodd1 (1995–1997) Connecticut Donald Fowler (1995–1997) South Carolina Roy Romer1 (1997–1999) Colorado Steven Grossman (1997–1999) Massachusetts Edward G. Rendell1 (1999–2001) Pennsylvania Joseph Andrew (1999–2001) Indiana Terrence R. McAuliffe (2001–2005) Virginia Howard Dean (2005–2009) Vermont Tim Kaine (2009–2011) Virginia Debbie Wasserman Schultz (2011-present) Florida 1 General Chairperson
List from http://rulers.org/usgovt.html#parties
- ^ Party History. Retrieved on February 17, 2007.
- ^ Melding Obama’s Web to a YouTube Presidency – New York Times
- ^ New York Times Source
- ^ "Public Funding of Presidential Elections". Federal Election Commission. 2005-02. http://www.fec.gov/pages/brochures/pubfund.shtml#General. Retrieved October 29, 2006.
- ^ Top Soft Money Donors: 2002 Election Cycle. Retrieved on February 17, 2007.
- ^ Scream 2: The Sequel. Retrieved on February 17, 2007.
- ^ 2006 Top Contributors: Democratic National Committee. Retrieved on February 17, 2007.
- ^ 2006 Democracy Bonds. Retrieved on August 2, 2007.
- ^ "DNC fined for illegal 1996 fund raising", CNN.com, Sept. 23, 2002.
- ^ Rhee, Foon (June 5, 2008). "DNC bars Washington lobbyist money". The Boston Globe. http://www.boston.com/news/politics/politicalintelligence/2008/06/dnc_bars_washin.html
- ^ Doug Heye (October 9, 2009). ""OPED: Obama Should Decline the Nobel Peace Prize"". Usnews.com. http://www.usnews.com/blogs/doug-heye/2009/10/09/obama-should-decline-the-nobel-peace-prize.html. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
- ^ ""Nobel reaction battles"". CNN PoliticalTicker. October 9, 2009. http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2009/10/09/nobel-reaction-battles/. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
- ^ Lawrence Kestenbaum. ""A Database of Historic Cemeteries", accessed July 17, 2006". The Political Graveyard web site. http://politicalgraveyard.com/index.html. Retrieved December 29, 2010.
- ^ http://www.democrats.org/news/blog/breaking_news_debbie_wasserman_schultz_elected_dnc_chair
- Democratic National Committee
- The Charter & Bylaws of the Democratic Party of the United States (PDF)
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