Category Archives: 2020 election

Progressive Democrats endorse YES on Benicia Measure D, Cannabis – also weigh in on State Props

The votes are in!!!

PDB members cast their votes last week on Benicia’s non-binding referendum, Measure D, as well as several of the State Propositions, all of which will appear on our November 3 ballot.

Following an informative meeting on September 8, members voted on our digital poll here on the PDB website.  The overall position of our members is very evident, with Benicia Measure D and several of the state propositions receiving nearly 100% of the votes. Here’s how the voting went:

PDB Member – Measure D and State Propositions
LOCAL BENICIA MEASURE D – Cannabis State Proposition 15 – Taxes State Proposition 16 – Affirmative Action State Proposition 17 – Suffrage State Proposition 18 – Suffrage
% YES 92.0% 100.0% 92.0% 100.0% 92.0%
% NO 8.0% 0.0% 8.0% 0.0% 8.0%
State Proposition 20 – Law Enforcement State Proposition 24 – Business State Proposition 25 – Trials
% YES 20.8% 50.0% 100.0%
% NO 79.2% 50.0% 0.0%

Note that our PDB vote on state propositions is only advisory.  Local Democratic clubs must follow the positions taken by our California Democratic Party on state propositions.  NONETHELESS and interestingly, Progressive Democrats of Benicia voted entirely in sync with our California Dem Party: YES on 15, 16, 17, 18, and 25, NO on 20, and NEUTRAL on 24.  (PDB took no position on propositions 14, 19, 21, 22, and 23, and we refer you to the Party’s positions.)

For more background and detailed information, see:

Progressive Democrats endorse Steve Young for Mayor, Terry Scott for City Council

By Ralph Dennis, August 18, 2020

In this age of pandemic distancing, the Progressive Democrats of Benicia convened about 50 members and interested parties in a digital ZOOM Candidate Forum on August 11.

Candidate for Mayor Steve Young and candidates for City Council Trevor Macenski and Terry Scott gave opening statements, answered prepared questions and audience questions, and finished with brief closing statements.

Members of the Progressive Democrats voted whether and whom to endorse by an online poll on the PDB website.  Voting was open for a week following the Forum.

For endorsement, PDB bylaws require a vote of 50% plus one of those present and voting.

For Mayor of Benicia – Councilmember Steve Young

Results were overwhelming in the Mayoral race.  100% of the 43 members voting chose to endorse Steve Young for Mayor in 2020.  Congratulations, Steve!  Christina Strawbridge, who declined to attend, received no votes.

For Benicia City Council – Arts and Culture Commissioner Terry Scott

The race for City Council presented members with a wider choice.  Members could vote for up to two to fill the two vacant seats.  Incumbent Tom Campbell, who also declined to attend, received only 5 votes, or 11.6% of those voting.  Planning Commissioner Trevor Macenski received 13 votes, or 30.2% of those voting.  Arts and Culture Commissioner Terry Scott received support from 40 members, or 93.0% of those voting, and snagged our only endorsement for City Council.  Congratulations, Terry!

For more information or to order yard signs, volunteer or contribute, visit:

Obama Endorses Biden in Video, Ending 2020 Neutrality

Obama promises to join campaign trail ‘as soon as I can.’  Endorsement allows Obama to campaign, raise money for Biden

Bloomberg News, by Jennifer Epstein and Tyler Pager, April 14, 2020
Barack Obama speaks next to Joe Biden in Washington, D.C. in 2016.
Barack Obama speaks next to Joe Biden in Washington, D.C. in 2016. Photographer: T.J. Kirkpatrick/Bloomberg

Former President Barack Obama endorsed Joe Biden on Tuesday in a 12-minute video describing his close partnership with his former vice president and urging Americans opposed to President Donald Trump to join together in a “great awakening” against him.

“Choosing Joe to be my vice president was one of the best decisions I ever made, and he became a close friend. And I believe Joe has all the qualities we need in a president right now,” Obama said, speaking directly to the camera.

Much of Obama’s statement is focused on winning over left-leaning voters who may be cool to Biden’s candidacy, with praise of Bernie Sanders, who exited the race last week, and an allusion to Elizabeth Warren’s promise of “structural change.”

He cast the general election as a binary choice between Biden and Trump, making several veiled references to some of the differences between the two candidates’ approach to governing and their personal backgrounds.

“Elections matter,” he said. “Right now, we need Americans of goodwill to unite in a great awakening against a politics that too often has been characterized by corruption, carelessness, self-dealing, disinformation, ignorance, and just plain meanness. And to change that, we need Americans of all political stripes to get involved in our politics and our public life like never before.”

Obama’s endorsement was expected now, just as the general election against Trump begins. He’d long made clear that he would wait for Democratic voters to choose their nominee before getting involved in the race. Biden didn’t wait for the endorsement, however, to capitalize on their relationship. From his campaign launch a year ago onward, the legacy of his eight years in the White House with Obama was at the core of his case.

Obama’s announcement comes a day after Sanders, Biden’s final opponent for the nomination, endorsed him and urged Democrats, independents and “some Republicans” to unite around Biden to defeat Trump.

Obama’s endorsement means that he and former first lady Michelle Obama, the two most popular figures in the Democratic Party, can begin to campaign — and raise money — for Biden. While Biden’s campaign had hoped to hold massive rallies to roll out the support of the Obamas, it is settling for a digital rollout during virus-related social distancing.

Obama remained publicly neutral throughout the primary race, but he offered to share advice and speak privately with any Democratic candidate. Most candidates took him up on the offer. But as the race narrowed, Obama spoke more frequently with Biden, including congratulating him for his victory in South Carolina, and he spoke a number of times with Sanders as he was contemplating the end of his campaign.

The Trump campaign dismissed the big-name endorsement, saying Biden would “embarrass” his former boss.

“Barack Obama spent much of the last five years urging Joe Biden not to run for president out of fear that he would embarrass himself. Now that Biden is the only candidate left in the Democrat field, Obama has no other choice but to support him,” Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale said in a statement.

Obama and Biden remain close friends, a bond that deepened when Biden was grieving over the death of his son Beau in 2015. Their partnership in the White House — in which Biden was given a broad portfolio — is also the model Biden has been contemplating as he begins the process of selecting his own running mate.

— With assistance by Mario Parker