Minutes of the January 30, 2017 General Membership Meeting

Democratic Club of Claremont
General Membership Meeting
Monday, January 30, 2017 7:00 PM
Napier Room, Pilgrim Place

Welcome: John Forney, President, welcomed 60 members and guests.

Agenda: Add: Endorsement of Matt Lyons for LaVerne City Council.


Merrill Ring, outgoing Vice President - Education presented a program in collaboration with representatives of progressive groups to stand up against and oppose possible actions of the Trump administration. Merrill first described his editorship of "Progressive Democracy", the online journal of The American Institute for Progressive Democracy. He read two selections that he has written that address conservative attitudes about taxes, wealth distribution and inequality (see here) He advocated resistance to Trump's white supremacist-nationalist government.

Next, Joe Cicero of Peace Action described the organization and its successes in reduction nuclear weapons. He urged everyone to contact senators to support US SB 200 and members of Congress to support H.R. 669 to restrict the president from carrying out a first strike.

Merrill then described the locally labeled "sanctuary city" resolution as a "work-to-rule" order in which city employees do only that which is described in their contract. He further urged everyone to sign up as "Muslim" if and when such registry is set up. Another action is for individuals to affiliate with one or more progressive groups. Barbara Aswad then spoke about her leadership in "Refugee Resettlement Team #2", the work it is doing to settle refugees locally and its needs. She asked for donations, to be made through the Claremont Presbyterian Church. Joe Salas added that some people may need to be placed in homes if a government search is initiated. Another progressive action was explained by Merrill and Ivan Light: that of the establishment of an internship with duties of tracking the voting record of Darrell Issa so as to turn him out of office. The internship will be named to honor past member Nathaniel Davis, a career diplomat. The intern will be assisted by members of the DCC who commit to the 2 year tracking project. Another progressive concern named was the continuation of the water purchase. Finally, two matters referring to children and youth were discussed: 1. Proposition 57 with its juvenile trials and labeling of "non-violent offenders" such that police departments are urging local communities toward stricter sentencing and 2. A preliminary draft of a resolution read by Mel Boynton:

California Education Resolution

Whereas the United States is ranked 17th among nations in the quality of our education system by the World Economic Forum (page 357, The Global Competitiveness Report 2016-2017) and

Whereas California is ranked 40th of 50 states, scoring a C- or 69.6, in the Education Week "Quality Counts 2016: State Report Cards Map" and

Whereas the California Democratic Party 2016 Platform: Education includes "California is still near the bottom, nationally, in per pupil spending. In order to ensure continued improvement in California's schools and correct years of underfunding we must prioritize the extended funding of K-12 and community colleges." http://www.cadem.org/our-california/platform/2016-platform-education and

Whereas Democrats have a substantial majority of both the California State Senate and State Assembly and a sitting Democratic Governor,

Therefore, be it resolved that California Democratic leaders will work to prioritize stable and adequate funding, as well as accountability, for the improvement of public education.

MSA (Andy Winnick/Debi Evans) the motion to adopt the resolution on funding for education in California was unanimously approved.

Business Meeting

President John Forney read his report asserting that these are not normal times and each of us has to get and stay active.

Ivan Light was presented with a certificate from John to honor Ivan's long service to the club.

New members and guests were asked to stand up and be recognized.

UDH: A representative said that the Pasadena office is now open year round and offers services to area groups.

Larry Schroeder, current Claremont City Council member, spoke about his candidacy and the issues facing the city.

Murray Monroe, candidate for Claremont City Council, spoke of the issues he would like to take up.

Matt Lyons, candidate for LaVerne City Council, spoke of his candidacy and brought information about the "Woman of Distinction" award, asking for nominees to be made from our club. Note: member Marilee Scaff was honored last year.

MSA (Carol Whitson/Sandy Hester) members unanimously approved the endorsement of Matt Lyons for LaVerne City Council.

MSA (Mel Boynton/CarolWhitson) members unanimously approved the endorsement of Larry Schroeder and Murray Monroe for Claremont City Council.

Carol Whitson, Treasurer, reported a balance of $2771.

MSA (Carol Whitson/Sandy Hester) the Minutes of November 28, 2016 members meeting were unanimously approved.

Election of Officers: Mel Boynton, Chair of the Nominations Committee, presented the slate of candidates: John Forney, President, Gar Byrum, Vice President - Education, Murray Monroe, Vice President - Membership, Carol Whitson, Treasurer, Carolee Monroe, Recording Secretary and Gayla Sanders, Corresponding Secretary for election by acclimation. MSA(Andy Winnick/Debi Evans) the motion was unanimously approved. Sandy Hester turned over the Membership folder to Murray and membership dues categories were given.

Gar Byrum, Sandy Hester and Merrill Ring told of actions and groups that are responding to issues. These include ACLU, grant writing, a club internship and Claremont city council meetings.

Debi Evans, Political Strategy Chair, listed several scheduled demonstrations and events:

  • February 5 - demonstration against the Dakota Access Pipeline in Los Angeles
  • February 18 - Immigrants Make America Great Again march in Los Angeles
  • February 18 - fundraiser for Keith Ellison in a Claremont home
  • March 5 - International Women's Day March and Rally at LA City Hall - noon
  • April 15 - Trump Taxes March in LA

MSA (Debi Evans/Joe Salas) members unanimously approved sponsoring ten CHS Young Democrats Club members at the Keith Ellison event.


  • February 10 luncheon - noon at Darvish restaurant - Tim Wendler will discuss actions and unity
  • February 27 meeting - 6:15 pm at Napier - Supervisor Solis will talk, hearty snacks available

John Forney presented the Agenda for a Prophetic Faith series.

The meeting adjourned at 8:50 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Carolee Monroe, Recoding Secretary