East Bay Civic Leader Gus Newport Will Serve on DNC’s Unity Reform Commission


By Daniel Marans, Huffington Post

Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez announced the complete list of people on the 21-member Unity Reform Commission on Monday.

The panel was created at the party’s national convention in July as a last-minute compromise between supporters of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and those of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who were demanding the elimination of super-delegates from presidential primaries.

One of the appointees is Gus Newport, former mayor of Berkeley, East Bay community leader and Sanders supporter.

The commission will now begin the process of discussing reforms to the party’s presidential nominating process, including hot-button issues like the role of super-delegates and caucuses. It will present its recommendations to the DNC by January 2018.

“At the 2016 convention, Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and national delegates agreed that in order to capture the energy of Democrats from across the country it is critical that we enhance the nominating process that continues to embrace the big tent of our party,” Perez said in a statement. “This includes everyone, from lifelong Democrats to 18-year-olds who cast their first ballot in 2016.”

“A Democratic Party that gives every Democrat a voice in the process will make enormous gains from the school board to the Senate this cycle and it will take back the White House in 2020,” he continued. “We already see this incredible energy in a number of highly competitive races across the country.”

The 21-member commission includes nine members selected by Clinton, seven members picked by Sanders, three picked by Perez, and the chair and vice chair ― selected by Clinton and Sanders, respectively.

Aside from Chair Jen O’Malley Dillon, a Clinton pick, the breakdown of the members selected by Perez and Clinton is not public.

Sanders had also already named his selections to the commission. They are Cohen, the vice chair; former Ohio state Sen. Nina Turner; former Sanders campaign manager Jeff Weaver; former Sanders New York delegate Nomiki Konst; Jim Zogby, founder of the Arab-American Institute; former Berkeley, California Mayor Gus Newport; former Nevada Assemblywoman Lucy Flores; and Nebraska Democratic Party Chair Jane Kleeb.

Once the commission makes its recommendations for reform, it will be up to the DNC to adopt the commission’s recommendations.

The commission’s first meeting will take place in Washington, D.C., on May 5-6. All of its meetings will be public.


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