Virginia Democrats have been debating the proper role of party resolutions at least since the 1964 Richmond Mosque convention, at which the party voted to endorse LBJ (over the objections of the Byrd Organization). I generally discussed the history of the DPVA resolutions process in a post a while back. Current concerns include the number of resolutions to be considered, how they are presented, and what happens to them after they are adopted.
One approach would be to institutionalize the practice of having the State Central Committee’s Standing Committee on Resolutions adopt a Platform every gubernatorial election year – starting in 2017. The Party generally adopted platforms during the Governor’s election year in connection with state conventions held from 1981 to 1997. In 2001, we began the practice of nominating our Governor candidates by primary (an excellent idea), and in 2001 and 2005 the SCC Resolutions Committee adopted a platform at the fall meeting, after considering comments from our candidates. (See DemRulz References Page for prior platforms.) Once adopted, the Platform would be available to all on the DPVA website. This approach yields a document that sets forth publicly and concisely the DPVA’s views on critical issues. That way, we don’t have to keep revisiting issues that we already addressed, and we can consider the most important new issues at the quarterly Central Committee meetings. (And also post those on the DPVA website.) Adoption of a quadrennial platform should reduce the number of resolutions and ensure a focus on the most important pending issues, while making sure that everyone’s voice is heard and avoiding arbitrary restrictions.