Keith Ellison's 100 Day Plan

Over the last several years Democrats have lost more than 940 state legislative seats, hundreds of congressional, senate and statewide seats and countless local races. 

The job of the next DNC Chair is going to be incredibly challenging. It will require: juggling raising tens of millions of dollars; unifying Democrats; holding Trump, his cabinet and Republican-controlled states accountable; protecting the right to vote and creating opportunities to expand voting access; laying the foundation for redistricting; and recruiting, training and supporting candidates up and down the ballot. 

This document lays out a framework for the first 100 days for the next DNC Chair. 

ORGANIZING SESSIONS

All across America Democrats are mobilizing, energized and ready to take back our country. We need to harness this energy by holding organizing sessions in every single state so Democrats know what we are going to do to fight back the Trump administration and Republicans on a state and local level. 

These organizing sessions will be collaborative and involve state and local party leaders, elected officials, labor, constituency groups and rank and file Democrats who want an active and meaningful role and voice in the party. We will work with state parties to hold organizing sessions in all 57 states and territories with the Chair and other senior DNC officials personally attending as many as possible . 

We will pick locations across the country of strategic importance focusing on counties or locations where candidates did particularly well or poorly last election, and locations that are municipal or legislative priorities going into 2017.
 

ORGANIZING THE OPPOSITION

The DNC -- working hand in hand with state and local Democratic parties -- will seek to organize and channel the immense groundswell of opposition to President Trump and his policies. 

The Democratic Party and its partners will support these activities and will create new opportunities to stand up against not only the dangerous policies of the Trump Administration but any Republican on a state or local level that makes it harder for Americans to achieve prosperity and inclusion. 

These organizing rallies must involve unifying not only all Democrats, but Americans who are committed to building a world that promotes an economy that works for all Americans, not just the wealthy and corporations, and an agenda where we have liberty and justice for all. 

INCLUSION AND ACCOUNTABILITY

Our party is at its best when it reflects the regional, racial, ethnic and overall diversity of the Americans we represent. We build an inclusive and accountable party by making sure that people have a seat at the table. 

A 3,143-county strategy means that we bring everyone to the table. We will work to ensure that constituency caucuses are fully staffed and we have regular briefings and programmatic updates from the Chair and Department Directors to the DNC Executive Committee and state party chairs.

We will call a meeting of all of the caucus and council chairs to set metrics for evaluating the work that we are doing to ensure we are moving our party in a consistently inclusive and accountable direction.
 

STAFFING

DNC staff must reflect the diversity of America, with an intentional hiring process that creates a diverse applicant pool and candidate selection. The DNC should also value staff with a record of success in state and local parties in particular.

Where possible, the DNC should hire internally, rather than hire vendors or consultants, to build Party knowledge and infrastructure.

We will work to expeditiously place strategic DNC staff across the country to allow more interaction between staff and our candidates and party infrastructure.

We are committed to working with the Vice Chairs, DNC members and caucus chairs and our state party chairs and vice chairs to seek qualified applicants for critical positions and constituency caucuses.

FUNDRAISING

As we travel the country we will focusing on boosting revenue from small and large dollar donations. Both are critical to the future of our party. As we boost donations, we must make sure that people feel like their interests are reflected in the policies of our party.

Our goal is to get one-million individual contributions to the DNC in the first 100 days. We will count donations from $1 to the legally allowable maximum.  

In setting these goals we hope to boost revenues of the Dollars for Democrats, State Party Victory Fund program and work with partners and allies on growing our low dollar universe. We will increase SPP funds to $10,000 a month, expand funds to include Democrats Abroad and territories and guarantee funds monthly.   

We also boost our fundraising by making labor a full partner. That means building meaningful relationships with the labor community as a strategic and tactical partner in the fight for the interests of working people and committing to using only 100% union hotels, venues and vendors when possible.

Finally, we will build our fundraising around programs that hold Republicans accountable, help build a Democratic bench and protect incumbents from Republican challenges and fight to protect and expand voting rights. We firmly believe that talking about our values and our work are the best way to boost donations and we hope to break down the internal barriers in the building between the fundraising and marketing teams and the rest of the operation. 
 

NATIONAL COORDINATED TABLE

We will work to bring the staffs together of major Labor Partners, DGA, DSCC, DLCC, DMO, DAGA, DASS, DCCC, NDCO, Democratic State Treasurers, Conference of Democratic Mayors and any other national committee that works to get Democrats elected. 

Our work must center around how we engage with these and other progressive allies in party rebuilding, including vision and message development, constituency outreach, and grassroots mobilization.

We will work together to develop a strategic memorandum of understanding of what partners need from the DNC and areas where we hope to collaborate on work moving forward.

We will also create the path to study and disseminate best practices for effective field organizing to candidates on all level and work to establish turnout goals encouraging local, state and federal candidates to boost turnout in their seats compared to the last comparable election, with separate goals for new and infrequent voters.
 

INFRASTRUCTURE

The first 100 days requires a substantial investment in quick infrastructure that can continued to be scaled over time and helps us better connect with the grassroots of our party.

Our first priority working with partner organizations is to develop a comprehensive list of every Democrat who is elected to partisan office across the country, their contact information and their date of re-election. We will also work to track down individuals who identify with our party but are elected to nonpartisan office. 

From there we will work to build our state and local toolkit aimed at helping candidates and local and state parties to succeed. That toolkit will be scalable overtime but will include:

  • Planning: Assisting with development of political, field and communications plans
  • Communications: Daily talking points, clips and shareable graphics
  • Research: Rapid-response research on policy proposals that harm working Americans
  • Technology: Expanded tech tools like standard software apps and website templates to ensure Presidential campaign innovations make it all the way down the ballot
  • Fundraising: Knowledge sharing, effective donor models and shared donor research to build effective state-based fundraising programs
  • Vendors: Vendor database with reviews on performance, quality and price
  • Surrogates: Assign dedicated staff to assist state and local parties with securing surrogates for key events


We will continue the excellent work of Interim Chair Donna Brazile and secure the internal technology infrastructure of the party and create a permanent cybersecurity advisory group to stay ahead of future cyberattacks. We will also expand membership to include technologists and policy experts from the business community and government.

We will help better communicate between state parties, DNC members and the DNC by providing a constantly updatable list of all staff working at the DNC and what their core functions of support are. 

Finally, we will make sure that every state party gets a voter file update. We will work closely with state parties and the National Voter File Cooperative to identify opportunities to expand work with national progressive partners.

MESSAGING

We have already been holding Trump accountable on social media, via email and substantial research into his nominees. Our goal over the coming years is to hold every single Republican in the country accountable to the people they represent. Having two way communication from the DNC to partners across the country helps nationalize local fights and localize national fights.

We also need to aggressively remind voters for the Democratic Party and our candidates stand for. That means establishing an accessible and easily digestible version of our platform and disseminating it to county and state parties. 

The DNC can help candidates get their message out by looking at bulk purchasing options, reducing any remaining barriers between the voter file and digital platforms and template pieces for down ballot candidates.