Bulletin: Union Updates & Officer / Committee Nominations

The Philly DSA Steering Committee would like to express its support of Adrian Rivera-Reyes candidacy, a DSA member who is currently running for an At-Large seat in the City Council race.

We’re two weeks out from municipal election primaries, and one of the more interesting stories of this cycle has been the hotly-contested District 3 race between incumbent Jannie Blackwell and upstart challenger Jamie Gauthier. Blackwell has represented West Philadelphia on City Council since 1992, and her late husband Lucien Blackwell held the seat from 1974 to 1991, meaning that the neighborhood’s in Year 45 of Blackwell family rule. In ordinary circumstances, it’d seem like it was maybe “time for a change.” However, for many West Philadelphia voters, the intrusion of Philadelphia 3.0 into the race has complicated matters.

Philadelphia 3.0 is, as best as the Bulletin can tell, a dark money political organization that seeks to “improve the business atmosphere in the city” (quote from a 2015 interview with co-founder Robert Zuritsky, who’s also the President of Parkway Corp) by investing heavily in “independent-minded candidates” running for City Council. Without getting too far into wonk-talk, dark money groups are both PACs that spend on elections and nonprofits that can take donations anonymously; interested parties can donate to the nonprofit arm and then have the money transferred to the PAC for election spending. It’s a “nimble move,” the Inquirer writes, especially, say, if you were a pro-business donor trying to quietly influence an election in a deep-blue district with a very progressive electorate.

Per Philly Power Research, Philadelphia 3.0 spent over $500,000 on municipal elections in 2015, and they’ve shown no signs of slowing down in 2019 (this writer has received, since the start of April, almost-daily glossy full-page mailers from Philadelphia 3.0, all in support of Gauthier). Does this mean Gauthier is bad? Who knows? Philly DSA certainly didn’t vote to endorse her opponent (other than support for Adrian, we’re neutral in this municipal primary; see below for more details). Her campaign manager claimed in an interview that 3.0’s support won’t affect her policy positions, but her campaign finance report is full of maxed-out $3,000 donations from e-grifter guys who want to use apps to revolutionize the rent-to-own furniture industry (and from Marsha Perelman, mother of Philadelphia 3.0 Executive Director Ali Perelman!), and we have literally no idea who’s paying for all those mailers. Perhaps the only concrete takeaway is that current campaign finance practices are very, very bad.

Statement of Support for Adrian Rivera-Reyes

The Philly DSA Steering Committee would like to express its support of Adrian Rivera-Reyes candidacy, a DSA member who is currently running for an At-Large seat in the City Council race. Adrian is a democratic socialist who has committed to using his office to challenge capitalism if elected. He has voiced his support for many of the programs supported by Philly DSA’s membership, including the Our City Our Schools campaign, and is also an explicit supporter of the Bernie Sanders candidacy. Only a vote of our membership at a General Meeting can endorse a candidate. Even so, we are proud to see Adrian in this race and are excited by the prospect of his election.

We encourage our members to reach out to Adrian’s campaign directly if they would like to support him. We would also like to wish him the best of luck. Follow this link to read our full statement.

This Week in Unions

This is a new feature we’re trying out. If your union does something cool between bulletins, let us know on Facebook or Twitter!

  • The Philly Drivers Union held a rally on Wednesday in solidarity with striking Uber and Lyft drivers worldwide who are demanding better pay. Our Labor Branch was there.
  • Faculty and academic professionals at Temple University were at the bargaining table on Monday for their third day of open negotiations, and, for the third straight session, twenty-plus members of the bargaining unit came to observe. DSA members Andrew Dudenbostel (Labor Branch) and Adrian Rivera-Reyes (at-large candidate for City Council) spoke at their contract kickoff rally.
  • Philadelphia AFL-CIO President Pat Eiding advised unions not to jump out too soon in support of Joe Biden, according to this story in the Inquirer. For us, this is good. It gives us a chance to make the case that labor absolutely has to support Bernie. Join us on May 23 for our Bernie 2020 Open Strategy Meeting to weigh in on how Philly DSA can play a role in that.
  • Finally, the first-place Philadelphia Union won 6-1 against the New England Revolution. Two goals from new signing Sergio Santos on his debut. They’ve got Toronto FC away on Saturday.

PHLDSA 2019 Local Convention

Saturday, June 8 | Liacouras Center | 1776 N. Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19121

Couple of updates on this summer’s Local Convention, which is, as hard as this may be to believe, only a month away. First, we have a venue: the Liacouras Center, just off Temple University’s main campus at 1776 N. Broad St.

Second, leadership nominations are now open and will be open through May 28. At the Local Convention, we’ll be electing new officers and standing committee chairs (Communications, Political Education, Member Engagement, and Electoral) as well as up to six at-large members of the new Steering Committee. Candidates have to apply and must be members in good standing. Email [email protected] with any questions.

Finally, the convention website is up and running. At convention.phillydsa.com, you’ll find the applications for elected positions and 2019 national convention delegates and (after Saturday May 18) the convention agenda, programming, and meeting packet.

Register for Convention!


Norristown Weeknight Medicare for All Canvass

Thursday, May 9 | 6:00 - 8:00 pm | 3107 N Wales Rd, Norristown, PA 19403

Phonebank for Canvass, Bernie OSM, and Local Convention

Monday, May 13 | 6:00 - 8:00 pm | 5110 Hadfield St

Fishtown Happy Hour

Tuesday, May 14 | 6:30 - 9:00 pm | El Bar | 1356 N Front St

BuxMont May Socialist Social

Wednesday, May 15 | 7:00 - 9:30 pm | Blueprint Brewing Company | 1571 Gehman Rd, Harleysville, PA 19438

Night School: Climate Change

Thursday, May 16 | 7:00 - 9:00 pm | Ben Franklin Room, Houston Hall | 3417 Spruce St

Eastwick Medicare for All Canvass

Saturday, May 18 | 12:00 - 4:00 pm | William A Cibotti Recreation Center | 7700 Elmwood Ave

Norristown Medicare for All Canvass

Saturday, May 18 | 12:00 - 4:00 pm | 3107 N Wales Rd, Norristown PA 19403

Marxism and Politics Reading Group

Monday, May 20 | 7:00 - 9:00 pm | Chapterhouse Cafe| 620 S 9th St

Post-canvass Data Entry

Monday, May 20 | 7:00 - 8:30 pm | Penn Bookstore | 3601 Walnut St

BuxMont Socialist Night School: Socialism & Education

Wednesday, May 22 | 7:00 - 9:00 pm | Doylestown Library | 150 S Pine St, Doylestown, PA 18901

Bernie 2020 Open Strategy Meeting

Thursday, May 23 | 6:00 - 8:00 pm | Parish Room, First Unitarian Church | 2125 Chestnut St

New Members Meeting

Saturday, May 25 | 1:00 - 2:30 pm | DIYRE | 4244 Lancaster Ave

Teachers in Debt: Philly Education Debt Workshop #2

Saturday, May 25 | 3:00 - 5:00 pm | West Chester Univ in Philadelphia | 701 Market St

Wissahickon Hike

Saturday, June 1 | 1:00 - 3:30 pm | Meet at 12:50-1:00 at Chestnut Hill West Regional Rail Station


Bylaws Update

The Bylaws Style Commission has submitted its final report and the new bylaws are available at https://www.phillydsa.com/bylaws.

Host a Canvass!

The Philly DSA Canvassing Committee will be running smaller, shorter weeknight and weekend canvasses out of members' homes and in order to do this, we need people to volunteer their houses and apartments as launch locations! If you're interested in hosting, please fill out this form. Please email Vicki at [email protected] with any questions.

Member Survey: Childcare

At our November 2018 General Meeting, the local established a childcare committee in order to implement more consistent childcare practices for the organization. The committee has prepared an initial survey to assess member needs and interests in order to guide their work. Please take a moment to fill out the survey:

Childcare Survey

Committee & Branch Meetings

Steering // Outreach // Pol Ed // LILAC // OCOS // Social // Canvassing // Policy // Labor // Housing // Childcare // Diversity & Engagement // DelCo // BuxMont

Support 👏 Philly 👏 DSA 👏!

Local Dues - support our campaign work and cover everyday operating costs like meeting space // Contribute to Philly DSA PAC - help fund our independent electoral campaigns // Accommodations, Accessibility, Childcare - let us know what you need to stay involved // Moved away from Philly? - update your address on the DSA national database.


In Solidarity,

Philly DSA Bulletin Team


Website: www.phillydsa.com

Inquiries: [email protected]


Join Philly DSA

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