The Democratic National Committee acknowledged the overwhelming popularity of Democratic president candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders on Monday with five selections to the party’s platform committee.
According to the Washington Post Sanders was awarded five members to the committee which will write the party’s platform for the upcoming general election. Cliinton named six selections to the 15-member committee on Monday with DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz choosing four members.
The DNC is expected to make an official announcement on Tuesday.
Among those chosen by Sanders is Palestinian rights activist James Zogby, who is already a member of the DNC’s resolutions committee.
“With five good members on the platform-drafting committee,” Sanders said at a campaign event in California. “We will be in a very strong position to fight for an economy that works for all of our people, not just the one percent; to fight to break up the large banks on Wall Street, who in my view now have much too much economic and political power. We will be in a position to fight for a carbon tax, so that this nation can begin to lead the world in aggressively addressing climate change. We will be in a position to fight to have the United States join the rest of the industrialized world in guaranteed health care as a right.”
Typically the selection of the platform committee is made by the DNC chair in conjunction with the winning Democratic candidate for president.
According to the Post:
“The change was made to be inclusive of Sanders supporters after the strong liberal challenge he mounted during a long and sometimes bitter primary. A main complaint of Sanders’s supporters is that party rules and procedures disproportionately benefit Clinton. Some Sanders backers claim the system was “rigged” from the start to exclude a challenger.”
The prestigious committee writes the policies with which the candidate runs, although it is non-binding.
Rep. Elijah E. Cummings of Maryland was named by Wasserman Schultz as chair of the committee.
In addition to Zogby, Sanders named Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota, Author and social activist Dr. Cornell West, author and environmental activist Bill McKibben and Native American activist Deborah Parker.
According to the Post the Clinton campaign’s choices are Wendy Sherman, a former top State Department official and Clinton surrogate; Neera Tanden, president of the Center for American Progress and a longtime Clinton confidante; Rep. Luis V. Gutiérrez of Illinois; Carol Browner, a former director of the White House Office of Energy and Climate Change Policy and former head of the Environmental Protection Agency; Ohio state Rep. Alicia Reece; and Paul Booth of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees union.
Wasserman Schultz also named former congressman Howard Berman of California; Rep. Barbara Lee of California; and executive Bonnie Schaefer.
Each campaign also has a non-voting representative at committee meetings.