OPINION - Parker Resignation Highlights Need for Change in Party Bylaws

Fri, Apr 6, 2018

Florida Politics

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                      CONTACT:                    
April 5, 2018                                                              Susan Smith, 813-390-3616
Parker Resignation Highlights Need for  
Change in Party Bylaws   
Tampa - Susan Smith, President of the Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida, has released the following statement:

John Parker did the right thing by stepping down from his positions in the Duval County Democratic Executive Committee, the Florida Democratic Party (FDP), and the Democratic National Committee (DNC). Mr. Parker's racially charged comments during a Democratic Party gathering in Jacksonville last January were divisive and wrong.

The Democratic Party is a coalition of many diverse communities working toward the common goal of a better future for our country and its citizens. The party gains strength from the varied experiences and perspectives among our communities and strives to be inclusive and respectful toward all. Mr. Parker's comments, as reported in the media, were not consistent with the party's values or goals.

The incident in Duval County underscores the need for change within our party. It has long been recognized that county party representation at the state level does not adequately reflect the diversity of Florida's Democrats. Efforts to restructure the state party's governing body have been underway for several years but have met strong resistance from a handful of members in the largest counties, including Duval. Proposed bylaw changes would allow for a much larger and more diverse membership in state party leadership.
We urge the current State Committee Members to approve changes to the FDP Bylaws which will bring the FDP into compliance with DNC rules; will enable FDP business to be conducted on a one-person, one-vote basis; and will expand representation so that it better reflects the diverse life experiences and cultures of all residents of Florida's counties.
The Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida is an official charter of the Florida Democratic Party. 

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