Now that the primary results have been certified by the County Registrar as of April 24, 2020 , we are going to be welcoming newly elected members to our Democratic Central Committee here in San Bernardino County for the 2020-2024 terms!
Democratic Central Committee member of the largest county in the country, with
our new members, you represent over 422,500 Democrats across San Bernardino
County either as an elected official, DNC Member, Statewide Caucus or
Organization Chair, CDP E-Board Representative, or as the highest finishing
Democrat in your primary race. This is an extraordinary time for new and
re-elected members as we go into the next phase of our election year – and your
voice in our party will be crucial to our efforts to support and elect
progressive Democrats up and down the ballot and defeat this president in
next few weeks we will be reaching out and working with you to get you ready
for our first meeting together – our organizational meeting. This first meeting
includes our ceremonial swearing-in, election of your Assembly District Central
Committee members, and nominations for Executive Board officers for the
2020-2024 terms. As our country and communities continue to grapple with the
affects of COVID-19, we will keep you all updated on a scheduled date, and any
changes to our regular schedule.
As difficult as isolation and social
distancing have been, we can only imagine how much worse things would be
without the technology that keeps us all connected. Nothing has exploded
more than Zoom, the teleconferencing and video conferencing software that was
ubiquitously adopted at the beginning of the pandemic. In fact, as a
result of how common Zoom usage has become, we, as a board, have seen a
significant push from users to switch to Zoom meetings over the past few weeks,
but like many organizations (the Federal and State Courts, Google, SpaceX,
NASA, and multiple Governments, to name a few), we have an obligation to
evaluate the security of using such a service and/or alternatives. This
obligation increases exponentially, when we are considering having meetings to
amend our bylaws, swear in members, and elect a new Executive Committee.
So far, Zoom has not proven to be
sufficiently secure to hold such fundamental meetings. Security issues
for Zoom are nothing new. In the summer of 2019, Zoom had a security on
Mac OS that could turn personal computers unknowingly into servers that could
allow strangers to look into your webcam. More recently, Zoom allowed
would-be attackers to bypass email confirmation requirements for meetings by
copying the ID tag in a meeting URL. And, of course, there is Zoom
bombing, where attackers could gain access to meetings randomly. But even
these are not the worst security issues.
Currently, Zoom continues to
misrepresent its encryption protections (claiming to use AES-256, when in
reality they use the outdated AES-128) and continues to route a significant
amount of traffic through China. Accordingly, the use of Zoom for
internal political discussions must be done with the understanding that our
calls are subject to warrantless searches by the Chinese government.
Altogether, these may not be reasons
for not using Zoom, but they are reasons for us to pause. Zoom meetings
as a solution put us in unpalatable positions. One option, for example,
is to limit participation to members of the SBCDCC, while muting the rest, but
then our meetings would be construed as not open to the public. Similarly,
putting password protection on the meetings would create the same
limitation. Notably, even if we were to conduct online meetings, the fact
that any of our members may not be prepared or able to call-in or receive
notice, would make us abandon some of our members at a time when we should be
Finally, in addition to the
questions of security, the EC must also consider logistic questions and access
for anyone who is impaired or financially unable to participate. Keep in
mind that members of our central committee reasonably relied on the fact that
none of our meetings were being held online, and making a radical change to
that policy must take into account every member’s rights. This is
particularly true, when it comes to our election process.
The State CDP has recommended that ALL
business meetings be cancelled or continued to a future date or conducted
remotely. To date, we have chosen to continue the meetings, but we have
not made a final decision due to the fluid nature of the pandemic circumstances.
The EC continues to consider all of our options.
We will make recommendations that
resolve the significant security problems with electronic communications (Zoom
in particular), serves all of our members, takes the current pandemic into
account, and recognizes that no one should have to choose between being a
member of the SBCDCC and their health.
Bernardino County Democrats have continued to lead our state on the issues that
matter to Californians and the American people. From healthcare, to income
inequality, housing, criminal and economic justice reform and so much more, the
work we will do together over the next four years will help shape the future of
our county and our country. When
California succeeds, the Nation Succeeds.
of the elected Executive Board, welcome new members and welcome back returning
members. We look forward to our continued work together, collaborating with
you, and working towards our shared goals.
Chris Robles, Chair
Mark Westwood, 1st Vice Chair
Jim Gallagher, 3rd Vice Chair
Carol Robb, Treasurer
Mario Alfaro, Parliamentarian
Sean Houle, Sgt at Arms
Joe Britt, Corresponding Secretary