“There’s a lot of different conferences within the convention where we’ll address different issues that are pertinent to the state and the country,” said Ronald LeVick, the Burnet County Democratic chair. “There’s a lot of work to do.”
The Texas Republicans gathered in May to hammer out the state platform, elect delegates for the national convention and enjoy their time together. (Read story here.)
Now, it’s the Democrats’ turn.
Burnet County is sending 15 delegates to the state convention, while Llano County will have eight.
“We’re as open and transparent as we can be,” LeVick said of the state convention and the Texas Democratic Party’s business.
LaVick explained that, during the convention, delegates as well as other Democratic Party members will attend a variety conferences that address many issues. These are often referred to as “caucuses.” While one of the main objectives of the convention is to formalize the state platform, LeVick said party members will continue to work on it over the two main days (Friday and Saturday).
“Some resolutions have already been submitted, but resolutions (to get an item included on the platform) can be still be submitted,” he said. “Of course, the resolutions will be checked to make sure they’re not something just unusual.”
This is LeVick’s third convention, his second one as a member of the Burnet County delegation. During previous conventions, LeVick said he’s enjoyed the way the party works on issues that affect people.
At one convention, party members addressed what they saw as improper use of the ad valorem (property) tax system.
“Basically, what was happening is these large corporations would get lawyers to challenge their property taxes and try to get them reduced,” LeVick explained. “The problem is the appraisal district would have to pay for the corporation’s lawyers if (the appraisal district) lost.”
Texas Democrats, he said, wanted to change it so corporations would have to pay its own legal fees whether they won or lost.
“We think corporations would be more reluctant to bring these challenges if they knew they had to pay their own lawyers,” LeVick added. “Those are the types of things we’ll look at, things that affect us all.”
LaVick said the convention also is a chance for Texas Democrats to come together behind presumptive Democratic party presidential nominee Hillary Clinton as she gears up for the general election on Nov. 8.
When the state convention wraps up, Democrats will begin looking toward the national convention in Philadelphia on July 25-28.
The Republican national convention is July 18-21 in Cleveland.