Florida Democratic Party Chair Forum – Video from Thurs., Nov. 30

The Florida democratic Party will be electing a new chairperson on Saturday, December 9, to fill the vacated seat left by the resignation of former chair, Steven Bittel.

This is your opportunity to hear from the next leader of Democrats in Florida.
Each of the four declared candidates for Florida Democratic Party Chair participated in a candidate forum:
Alma Gonzalez, Stacey Patel, Terrie Rizzo, and Monica Russo.

Video of the event is available on the Facebook page of the
Miami-Dade Democratic Party
and will be posted as a podcast (CLICK HERE).

President’s Message, Dec. 2017 — Stanley P. Dillard, Sr.


This may seem like a stretch, but why should you attend the ongoing CDD meetings with regard to the amenities, and transfer of ownership of our community from the developer to our residents? Many people don’t seem to turnout, especially minorities who live here. By attending and participating in the hearings, we can be more informed about issues which affect us. It may seem like a small and trivial point, but taking an interest in happenings in our community has the potential of becoming habit, much like voting should be in political elections.

The consequences of not voting are immense with its potential effects on real wages, affordable higher education, accessible health care, Medicaid, Medicare, and housing affordability. However, there is one area we tend to overlook by not voting with regularity, which is not obvious at first. The party that wins elections has the potential to control not just the administrative and legislative branches, but also gains the power to restrict your rights through control of the judicial branch of our government with lifetime appointments; which could affect our children’s and grandchildren’s future for the next 40 years or more.

Donald Trump has nominated more unqualified judicial appointees than any other president so early in his first term, according to the American Bar Association. The ABA Standing Committee has been ranking prospective judicial candidates before they are officially nominated for a position since the Eisenhower administration. Presidents then nominate candidates deemed qualified by the group.

ABA President Linda Klein said that the “ABA the standing committee’s work has done much to instill public confidence and trust in the judiciary”. The committee has reviewed over 600 candidates for federal judicial posts during its existence, and all of whom were deemed qualified for the bench until now, when the ABA ranked Trump nominees Charles Goodwin, Leonard Grasz, Holly Teeter, and Brett Talley as unqualified.

In addition, 91 percent of Trump’s nominees are white, and 81 percent are male, according to an Associated Press analysis. Three of every four are white men, with few African-Americans and Hispanics in the mix, and 19% are female of any race or ethnicity (Women equal 51% of the population). Unlike President Obama, this administration feels that it has no obligation to appoint a diverse judiciary, which reflects the make-up of the U.S. population. You can continue this fiasco by staying home every election cycle, or change it by exercising your right to vote and encouraging like-minded people, your millennial children, grandchildren, nieces, and nephews to vote for Democratic candidates at every level of government, and at every opportunity.

Are we at a time when women in this country finally stand up to sexual harassment, and child molestation by those who either seek or hold high and powerful offices such as: Alabama Judge Ray Moore, and Donald Trump? Would you agree that it’s time for the “Blame the Victim” mentality to end with the women of this country finally exercising their political rights and muscle? The profile of the typical republican voter is older, white and male.

Millennials tend lean democratic/ independent, and voted for democratic leaning independent Berny Saunders. Hopefully, those women and millennials who took to the streets after the election of 2016 to the theme of “Not My President”, show up in large numbers at the polls. Will 2018 be the year of the Millennials and angry female voters? I certainly hope so.

Stanley P. Dillard, Sr.
President, Solivita Democratic Club

A Few Words from Our Scheduled December Speaker, Catherine Price

Hi, Solivita! I look forward to finally making an appearance there at your December 13th meeting.

I am attending the annual convention of the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL). The thing I appreciate about our lobbying organization is that they take a principled stand on a number of issues of importance with healthcare being one of many issues of peace and justice both nationally and internationally. I agree we are living in critical times for many reasons. We need leaders that have a broad understanding of what is happening across the US and the world and have a sound moral and ethical foundation with which to make decisions. Our entire political landscape has become so corrupt that it is hard to know what to do. However, in the midst of this we do need to stand up and be counted.

Healthcare is one of many critical issues facing us – we cannot continue to spend more and more for the care that we all need. Ultimately a single payer national healthcare plan is the only solution – whether we can get there is another question. It is also not just to balance our healthcare budget on the backs of the poor and the low income working people. This issue of taxation is also conspicuously important. Republicans deficit hawks use this issue to bludgeon Democrats and then when they get in they start cutting taxes which in effect creates even higher deficits. Historically the Republicans have raised out debt and Democrats bring it down. We are seeing that yet again. Except now the tax cuts for corporations are going to be partially (but certainly not completely) offset by cuts to services for the poor and even the working class. The Republicans are desperate to pay off their political handlers. They are driving for this. If we give in easily then we as a Democratic Party are complicit in this act. Also, we cannot have bipartisan support for raising military spending and then fight against the cuts to spending for people. Makes no sense. That is an internal debate that needs to happen.

See you in December,
Catherine Price

These bills have been introduced in the House of Representatives while you were distracted by the indictments:

While we are all sidetracked by Trump/Pence vs. the NFL, Trump vs. Puerto Rico, Harvey Weinstein & the Sexual Predators in Hollywood, Russian Hacking of the US election, or the indictment of Trump campaign leaders, it’s worth noting that the following bills have been introduced in the House of Representatives:
1. HR 861 – Terminate the Environmental Protection Agency
2. HR 610 – Vouchers for Public Education
3. HR 899 – Terminate the Department of Education (may end “free” public education as we know it)
4. HR 69 – Repeal the Rule Protecting Wildlife (seriously? Ridiculous to say the least.)
5. HR 785 – National “Right to Work” (this is actually the ‘Right to fire you whenever your boss feels like it” law and would effectively end unions.)
6. HR 83 – Mobilizing Against Sanctuary Cities Bill
7. HR 147 – Criminalize Abortion (“Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act”)

Become a Delegate to the FDP State Convention, Oct. 27-29 at Disney Orlando

Delegate elections will be held on Monday, September 11th during our regular DEC meeting in Bartow. 

FDP 2017 State Convention
The 2017 Florida Democratic Party State Convention will now be held on October 27 through October 29 at a new location:

Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort
1000 West Buena Vista Drive
Orlando, FL 32830

State Convention Room Block
We have secured a special group rate of $199 per night plus taxes. To make your reservations, please use the link below, or call the Disney Group Reservations Phone Team number: (407) 939-4686.

Reservations Link: https://aws.passkey.com/go/FloridaDemocraticParty2017.

Qualification of Delegates
All delegates must be registered Democrats in the State of Florida.

Any registered Democrat may run for a delegate position in the county, where registered.All interested candidates are required to file with their County Chair, Vice Chair, State Committeeman, or State Committeewoman between August 1 and September 11, 2017.

It is the responsibility of the County Party officers to make delegate filing forms available to any Democrat seeking them during the above-mentioned dates.

Delegate Fees
A check for $ 60.00(Adults), $40 (Students) and $75 (non-delegate) shall be paid by each delegate to the Polk County DEC.  This check covers the cost of registration ($45) and a $15 surcharge to defray local expenses related to the convention.  The Polk DEC, in turn, will send one check to FDP for the delegation. 

Election of Delegates 
Election of delegates will take place at the September 11th DEC meeting at 6:15 pm in the County Commission Chambers on the First floor at 330 W. Church St., Bartow Fl, 33830.   

If you have a desire to be a delegate, please complete the attached delegate form and bring the form to our September 11th meeting along with your payment.

Democratically Yours,
Shawn W. Kinsey 
Chair, Polk County DEC
Vice Chair, Florida Democratic County Chairs Assoc.

Here’s How to Help Texans with Hurricane Relief

The stories and images we are seeing out of Houston, Texas this week are deeply troubling. The National Weather Service is calling this storm “unprecedented” and it is clear that Texans are on a long road to rebuilding their homes and communities.

In Florida, we are all too familiar with the hardships that so many in Texas are facing. That is why we are encouraging everyone to help emergency relief agencies however possible.

Here is a list of organizations who could use your support as they help those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

It’s important for all of us to come together to help our neighbors and those in need. Please join us in doing our part to assist those in their time of need.

Florida, Polk County & Solivita Democrats

Don’t Agonize about the Senate “Healthcare” Bill…Let’s ORGANIZE!

This is important! Really easy action…


The Senate Finance Committee Office (202 224 4515) is keeping count of Americans requesting public hearings on Senate ‘healthcare” bill.
Please call & request that Public Hearings be held.
We need more callers. The phone is answered 8:30am – 6:30pm (EST)
Copy / Paste / SHARE Widely — and Please Call!!

SDC President’s Message

If you were asked how frequently you review the Solivita Democratic Club web page, how would you answer? Therefore, I plan to send the President’s Message both via the web page and as a follow up e-mail. The following message  also appears in our Beacon Newsletter.

Trump’s budget actually threatens his voters the hardest!

     Trump’s budget cuts taxes on the wealthy, boosts defense spending, and slashes programs for the poor and disabled – potentially hurting many of the rural and low-income Americans who voted him into office. The plan calls for more than $1 trillion in cuts to social programs with millions of beneficiaries, from farm subsidies to federal student aid. It includes a $600 billion cut to Medicaid over 10 years, slashes the federal food stamp program, and Social Security Disability Insurance. He proposes some of the deepest cuts to agriculture subsidies since Ronald Reagan- nearly $50 billion over 10 years. At the end of the decade, the U.S. would spend nearly twice as much on defense as on other domestic programs. Domestic discretionary spending would be capped below 2004 levels, while military spending soars to $722 billion. It would cripple programs for low-income families ranging from cash assistance to the child tax credit. Nearly $200 billion in cuts will come directly from the federal food stamp program, which helps feed 44 million people each year.
     Lastly, Trump would also slash $72 billion by tightening the rules for programs for people with disabilities, eliminate funding for NPR, PBS, render the Consumer Financial Protection Agency toothless, disable or repeal Dodd-Frank (Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act), and make health insurance unaffordable for 22 million Americans. Does this sound like his policies are “putting America first”? This information is both sobering and alarming, and we cannot as Democrats allow a repeat of the 2016 election in the next 2018 cycle. It is a given that Trump should not have won, but surgical gerrymandering by the Republicans is a prime reason for his win in the electoral college, despite the fact that Hillary Clinton received 2.86 million more votes.
     In order to help us to develop a strategy to encourage more of us to go the polls, would you please either click on the following link, or copy and paste it into your internet web browser to take a survey ?
Best Regards to Everyone
Stanley P. Dillard, Sr. President
Solivita Democratic Club
863-427- 4480

Florida Rights Restoration Coalition to Convene in Orlando, July 20-22, 2017

You are invited to the following event: 


Event to be held at the following time, date, and location: 
Thursday, 20 July 2017 at 7:00 PM 
– to –
Saturday, 22 July 2017 at 4:00 PM (EDT) 
Rosen Centre
9840 International Drive
Orlando, FL 32819

View Map



 Dear FRRC Supporter,

Over the last five years we have worked steadily towards growing capacity among returning citizens, to be a central driving force of the statewide Voting Restoration Ballot Initiative, and to lead the effort in a powerful way. Together, with our coalition partner organizations, we have accomplished what many believed was impossible.

We pulled together an expert, pro-bono team of legal and policy advisors, to develop policy and language that was approved, unanimously, by the Florida Supreme Court.  We led a 100% organic, grassroots petition circulation program, validating over 70,000 signatures to trigger legal review, solely on volunteer efforts; a feat never achieved before in Florida’s history. And, in accordance with industry best practices, we collectively invested in holistic, data-driven research to develop messaging strategy that has reached the hearts and minds of people from all walks of life, propelling collaboration and active engagement from many unlikely supporters, hand-in-hand, with those directly impacted by this issue.

What we have already accomplished is miraculous. I extend my sincerest thanks to the love and commitment that each of you have poured into this effort. Without you, none of this would have been possible.

But we have only just begun. Over the next 18 months, we have two major lifts ahead on our pathway to victory. One, we must lead on educating the public on this issue and garnering more support from our fellow Floridians; and two, we must ramp-up our petition circulation efforts to qualify for the 2018 election cycle.

To kick-off our efforts, I invite you to join us at the FRRC 2017 State Convening, which takes place July 20th-22nd, at The Rosen Centre, in Orlando; please register today!

At the Convening, FRRC members we will be able to experience: interactive participation with the Ballot Initiative Expert Panel; hands-on messaging training that will enrich our Public Education Program; and relationship building and collaborative planning with other FRRC partners from your region. Additionally, all Convening participants will leave with tangible resources to help them achieve their volunteer goals, including messaging, phone banking, canvassing and petition collection toolkits.

Another exciting event will be happening during Convening weekend. Our 1st Annual Champions of Change Gala & Awards Ceremony, honoring FRRC’s Social Justice Champions, on the evening of July 21st, at The Rosen, in Orlando, hosted by Ms. Vivica A. Fox; buy your tickets today!

We need your support now to build our future success. I look forward to seeing everyone in Orlando, July 20th-22nd. It is a weekend you do not want to miss!

Desmond Meade, President

P. S. There are two more opportunities to support the FRRC! You can become a Sponsor for the event or you can advertise in the 2017 State Convening Program Book; stretch your advertising dollar by purchasing an additional ad in the 1st Annual Gala Program Books for a discounted package price!

Women’s History Month takes on new meaning this year.

“PerSisters” Womens’ March in Lakeland

2016 marked the end of an historic Presidential run by Hillary Clinton who, regardless of the outcome, broke many glass ceilings on behalf of all of us getting there.

I bring quadruple diversity to the Senate: I’m a woman; I’ll be the first Asian woman ever to be elected to the U.S. Senate; I am an immigrant; I am a Buddhist. When I said this at one of my gatherings, they said, ‘Yes, but are you gay?’ and I said, ‘Nobody’s perfect.’
– Senator Mazie Hirono
The elections brought some gains.  There are now 21 women serving in the United States Senate (16D/5R)  including three new women of color: Kamala Harris  (California), Tammy Duckworth (Illinois), and Catherine Cortez Masto (Nevada). They join Mazie Hirono (Hawaii), who was elected in 2012.

The number of women in the House also increased, with now 62 Democrats and 21 Republican women, representing 19.1% of the 435 elected Representatives.
The first woman elected to the US Senate was Hattie Wyatt Caraway (Arkansas).
Appointed to vacancy caused by death of her husband, Senator Thaddeus Caraway; elected on her own in 1932 and served until 1945.

The origins of Women’s History Month can be traced back to 1908 New York, and the first Women’s Day organized by the Socialist Party of America in remembrance of the International Ladies Garment Worker’s Union strike that year.

Soon after, International Women’s Day caught on in the United States and across Europe and has been universally celebrated on March 8th since 1915.

In 1980 President Jimmy Carter proclaimed the week beginning March 7, 1982 as “Women’s History Week,” and in 1987, after being petitioned by the National Women’s History Project, Congress designated the entire month of March as “Women’s History Month.”

Today women voters represent 53% of the voting population, but the election of Donald Trump, and the next appointment to the US Supreme Court have put women’s rights, indeed human rights, at the greatest risk in decades.