Archive for the 'Champaign County Democrats' Category

Weibel and Harrison for County Board

The Champaign County Democratic Party has endorsed C. PIUS WEIBEL (District 7) and SHANA JO HARRISON (District 9) as our preferred candidates in their districts for Champaign County Board in the March 18 Democratic primary election. The endorsement motion from the party’s Executive Board was presented and approved unanimously at the Wednesday, February 22 regular meeting of the Central Committee. No other endorsements in any other races were recommended to the committee.

Party endorsements in primary elections, while routine in much of Illinois, are rare in Champaign County. Discussion of the motion focused on two reasons for the committee to break precedent and endorse these two candidates at this time:

First, this action supports the Champaign County voters who have elected Democratic majorities on the County Board every two years for more than a decade. The incumbents in Districts 7 and 9 engaged in a back-room leadership deal with the Republicans in 2012. Their arrangement certainly suited the individuals involved, but it betrayed the trust of the voters who elected them and their Democratic colleagues elsewhere in the county. The County Democratic Party has a duty to support all Democratic voters and to deter such self-serving maneuvers in the future. We are confident that Mr. Weibel and Ms. Harrison will work with Republican board members to support the best interests of all Champaign County residents, regardless of party affiliation. We are confident also that if the voters choose to elect a Democratic County Board majority, Mr. Weibel and Ms. Harrison will respect that choice, and will work with the Democratic caucus to organize the the board and set its agenda.

Second, we believe Mr. Weibel and Ms. Harrison are progressive Democrats who will more effectively represent their districts. Pius Weibel is an experienced board member with a solid (and bipartisan) record of leadership. Shana Harrison, former President of the UIUC Illini Democrats, works with Champaign County organized labor and understands well the largely young and diverse residents of District 9.

The Party’s by-laws have allowed us to endorse candidates in primary elections since 2006. However, local Democrats have refrained from doing so until now. Many if not most of us prefer that the Party and its Chair never get involved in any primaries, and this is a first for us. Our unanimous decision signifies that we believe the stakes are just too high for us to sit quietly on the sidelines for these two races in this election.

Alvin G. Klein
Chair, Champaign County Democrats

Eric Thorsland Fund Drive Kickoff

Eric Thorsland is running for one of two seats on the Champaign County Board representing District one. He is funding his campaign with donated scrap metals from many of his supporters, making Eric a recycled candidate who is not the incumbent. Eric is having a big fund drive kick off Monday June 2nd at 7:30am at his farm located at 480 County Road 2500 N. Mahomet Il. You are welcome to come meet Eric and some of his supporters then, as we pile the scrap as high as we can to start of Eric’s fund drive.

2008 Democratic Unity Dinner

Please join us! Make your reservation today!

Spring 2008 Democratic
Unity Dinner

Sunday, April 6th
5:00 – Social Hour
6:00 – Dinner Program

Laborer’s Hall
108 E. Anthony Dr., Urbana

$35 with advance Reservation/$40 at the Door

To reserve your seat now, e-mail Matthew Gladney at and tell us how many tickets you’d like reserved. Then either mail your check to Dinner Committee, Champaign County Democrats, P.O. Box 1455, Champaign, IL 61824; or use your credit card on-line at:

Any questions? E-mail Matthew at .

Watch Primary Results with Local Dems!

WHAT: Primary Results-Watching Party
WHEN: Tomorrow, Tues. March 4th, starting at 6:30pm
WHERE: Rock’s in Champaign

Voters in Texas, Ohio, Vermont, and Rhode Island are going to the polls tomorrow, and could determine our party’s presidential nominee in November. Will Obama consolidate his lead, and secure the nomination? Will Hillary stop his momentum and fight on to the convention? We’ll find out tomorrow night when the results come in from these four key states.

Gather with local Democrats at Rock’s to watch the results as they come in tomorrow, Tuesday March 4th, starting at 6:30pm. Rock’s is located in Champaign on Springfield Ave., near the railroad tracks, between First and Neil Street. Join us for good company, food & drink, and MSNBC as we watch the results come in from Dayton to Dallas!

Champaign County Dems Write a New Party Platform

Democrats“The Champaign County Democratic Central Committee believes that in order to fulfill our democracy’s greatest promise, our government must work for the social and economic equity of all people. As the elected leaders of the Champaign County Democratic Party, we endorse the following platform and will urge our representatives in government to work to advance these goals.”

This opening statement introduces the new party platform which has been under consideration for the past few months. After several hours of discussion, the Champaign County Democratic Central Committee achieved concensus on the party platform document at the last committee meeting, held on January 23rd. After making several amendments to the document, they recommended that the platform be presented for passage by the newly elected Central Committee at the Democratic County Convention scheduled for March 5th, 2008.

Historically, the Champaign County Democratic Party adopted a platform every two years at the convention until the 1990′s. With the decision to resurrect the process, Central Committee members were invited to serve on the Platform Committee responsible for drafting a new platform. The Platform Committee held several meetings in October and November and began their work with a review of our own platforms from the 1980′s, along with other county and state Democratic Party platforms. In that process, the committee identified key issue statement in health care and human services, education, economic opportunity, criminal justice and public safety, environment and land use, participatory government, Democratic Party principles and national priorities. The first draft of the document was presented at the November Central Committee meeting and those in attendance provided written input. The document was also sent to all current Central Committee members and incoming new Central Committee members via email to invite their feedback. The Platform Committee reviewed all input and presented an amended document at the January 23rd Central Committee meeting.

There was broad agreement on nearly all of the issues put forth on the final three-page document, which can be obtained as a PDF document, here. Thanks to everyone who participated in this process!

Party with Democrats on Super Tuesday!

Regardless of the election results, Democrats are going to have a lot to celebrate on Super Tuesday! Join fellow Dems after the polls close for the Democratic Victory Party at Rock’s in Champaign. Gather with friends, enjoy food & drink, and watch the results come in from Illinois and around the country (Yes, I asked — they do have MSNBC at Rock’s!).

WHAT: Democratic Victory Party
WHERE: Rock’s (between campus and downtown Champaign, on Springfield Ave., between First Street and the railroad tracks)
WHEN: Tuesday, Feb. 5, 8:00pm – ?

If you have any questions, e-mail Tony at or call at 355-1693. Hope to see you there!

Come See Democrats’ New Home

The Champaign County Democrats have moved to a new Party Headquarters, and you’re invited to check out our new home!  An Open House for the public, the media, and all interested Democrats will be held this Saturday, Feb. 2, from 11:00am to 1:00pm.

The new Dem HQ is located at 110 S. Neil Street in the heart of downtown Champaign.  It’s just south of the intersection of University Ave. & Neil St., across the street from Christie Clinic.

Volunteers put in countless hours of work to make this move possible, and now we want to show off our new digs!  Stop by for a few minutes on Saturday to see the new HQ, enjoy a snack, meet with other local Dems, and maybe pick up a yardsign or two in time for the Feb. 5th primary.

Hope to see you there!

Candidate Forum for Champaign County State’s Attorney

There will be a candidate’s forum for the office of Champaign County State’s Attorney this Wednesday, January 30, 2008.  The forum will be held at 6:00pm in the University of Illinois Law School Auditorum, which is located at 504 E. Pennsylvania Ave. in Champaign.

All three candidates currently running in the February 5th primary are scheduled to attend.  These include:

Ivy & Rietz are running against each other in the Democratic primary.  The winner will face Republican Miller-Jones in the November 4th general election.  Julia Rietz currently holds the office of State’s Attorney for Champaign County.

This candidate’s forum is sponsored by the University of Illinois Law School Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

Newsletter: March/April, 2007

Here’s our print newsletter for March/April, 2007. This issue includes articles on the following:

  • Champaign City Council Candidates
  • School Board Candidates
  • County Board 6 Appointment
  • and more…

Download a copy in PDF.

Hello and Welcome

Welcome to the new web site and blog home for the Champaign County Democrats.

While our illustrious webmaster has already crafted an excellent welcoming post, I wanted to take a moment to 1) thank him for the great job he did creating this site, and 2) say how excited I am to see the local Democratic party embracing the internet in such an interactive way. People are welcome to comment here, regardless of political affiliation (or lack thereof), and lively, respectful discussion is encouraged.

Please, feel free to explore the site, learn more about the local Democratic party, check-out upcoming political events, read the blog posts, and leave comments and/or suggestions. The site will only be as strong as the people who read and contribute to it. Thanks for stopping by.

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