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Party Regulars, Street Join Forces

In These Times has a pair of articles spotlighting the working relationship between the Democratic party and progressive activists. Adam Doster's "Dancing Into the Majority" provides an encouraging look at how "once alientated" activists are finding creative ways to work with the "party establishment." Says Doster:

...more and more progressives who refused to support spineless Democrats and instead backed unsuccessful third-party candidates have come to understand the pragmatic necessity of working within the Democratic Party.

Doster focuses on the innovative efforts of groups like the Progressive Democrats of America, Code Pink, the Aurora Project and the Party in the Street, as well as MoveOn, to work in coalition with the Democrats. His article explains the problems and pitfalls the groups have experienced in working with the Democratic Party, as well as the accomplishments. Doster's piece should be of interest to a broad range of progressive activist groups seeking new paths of cooperative action with the Democratic Party.

While Doster focuses on activist organizations, Connor Kenny's ITT article "Hello, Iím a Democrat: Meet the netroots activists who have moved online and into political office" shines a light on four of the nation's most energetic progressive activists: Mario Champion; Chris Bowers; Anna Brosovic; and Jeremy Horton. Notes Kenny:

In coming years, netroots activists will be moving up from local party positions to state and national ones. And, while they are more progressive than the party as a whole, first and foremost they are committed Democrats who want to win, and who are willing to put in the money and the time to make it happen. Though their outsider identity may sometimes cause them to break the door down rather than ask for a key, they want to help.

Taken together, the ITT articles paint a promising picture of the Dems' future, energized by an infusion of netroots and grasssroots activists, determined not only to win stable Democratic majorities, but to elect diverse candidates of stronger character and heightened commitment.