January 8, 2004
Dear DNC Southern Caucus Member:
The race for our next DNC Chairman is now in full swing.  Having personally spoken with over 150 DNC members over the past three weeks, one thing is clear to me – while we have many challenges ahead of us, we have both the will and the talent to bring our party back to majority status.
For the past four years, Chairman Terry McAuliffe has successfully built a solid base for our national party.  Our financial house is in order and great gains have been made in technology, voter contact and message dissemination.   Our mission now is to take these resources and invest them outside Washington to build our state parties and become a force that can win elections in ALL of our 50 states – not just a few.
We face some serious challenges and some disturbing trends.  In this last presidential election, Democrats lost 97 of the 100 fastest growing counties in America.  We lost married women voters and saw Republicans effectively appeal to the African American community via its churches.  We lost Catholic voters and lost ground with Hispanic and Jewish voters.  The lessons from the past cycle are clear:  we need to recalibrate our message, make needed changes, find our voice, and produce victories.
I vividly remember in 1968 attending a rally for Senator Robert Kennedy.  I was just 12 years old then, and did not really comprehend the complexities of the Vietnam War.  But I did see the diversity in the crowd, felt the electricity in the air, and saw people respond to his positive message of hope.  Kennedy challenged us to think anew and to get involved.  His challenge is our clarion call now, some 34 years later.
I have listened carefully to you over the past three weeks.  And I plan to continue that dialogue into the new year and take your suggestions on how we can bring true change to our party’s operations so that we invest in our human and physical capital where it matters most – at the state and local level.
During the holidays, I shared with you my goals as a prospective candidate for DNC chair.  In listening to you, those goals have not changed, but I have a fresh perspective on them having heard your concerns and aspirations for our party.  They are:
·                    To win on tough territory.  The key word here is WIN.  I come from the Midwest, and ran successfully for Congress six times in a “Red” state.  My congressional district had both suburban and rural voters, and I know what it takes to be successful not just in areas where we already can win, but where we have challenges.  We must take every election to all fifty states – not just a few.  If we do not, we will rapidly become a permanent minority party of the few, not a national party of many.
·                    To have Democrats show we have a strong and clear national security policy.  The 2004 presidential election was conducted in an atmosphere where American families were concerned about their safety and our national security.  That environment favors an incumbent president, and, at the end of the day, we did not convince Americans that our vision for American security was better than President Bush’s failed policy.  The world is different after September 11, and it calls for new and different solutions.  As Democrats, if we cannot make Americans feel safe, we will not win elections.  President Truman said that we could build a smarter, tougher national security policy for America and win the Cold War.  He was right, and we should cede no quarter to Republicans on this issue.
·                    To truly embrace the “Big Tent” mantra of our party.  We all talk about it.  We need to live it, every day – in our message, and in our outreach.  There must be a place in our party for diverse views.  We must respect the opinions of others, and have a party-wide conversation about how we assure Americans that we respect people of faith and connect with their values and their everyday lives.  Inclusiveness and tolerance have always been the foundation of our party.  We must not be contemptuous of those who hold a diverse view.  That is the Republican way, not ours. . 
·                    To build and enhance our state parties.  Elections are not won in Washington, D.C.  Our state party organizations are the backbone of our party, and the key to our future strength.  Congressional majorities and the White House are important, but we won’t get there unless we empower our state parties to win local, state legislative, gubernatorial and other statewide races.  Our state chairs will need someone to stick by them, and invest in them.  I will.
In the next 24 hours, I will be announcing my intentions regarding the DNC Chair race.  I am more convinced than ever that we are at an historic juncture for our party, and that we must marshal the “three m’s” of politics – money, message and mechanics – in ways that focus our resources locally, building beyond our traditional   base. 
I have every confidence that, together, we will build a stronger Democratic party.  We will do this by building on our past success, and by adopting the creative solutions being offered by Democratic Governors, Mayors, and other state and local innovators around America.  And in doing so, we will show Americans that our party is truly the party of opportunity for everyone in this great country. 
Tim Roemer

PRESS RELEASE from Tim Roemer for DNC Chair


For Immediate Release


Ruben Pulido Jr.

Jan. 9, 2005



Roemer Announces Candidacy for DNC Chair
WASHINGTON--Citing a need to welcome more Americans to the Democratic Party, and pledging to destroy the myth that Democrats are weak on security, former Indiana Congressman Tim Roemer today announced his candidacy for Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC).
Roemer said the Party needs to “build a bigger bus” and attract more voters, especially in the South, Midwest and Rocky Mountain states.
“I am from the Midwest, and ran successfully for Congress six times in a ‘red’ state.  I know what it takes to be successful in tough territory,” Roemer said.  “This is key because we must take our fight to all fifty states -- not just a handful.   Otherwise, we could become a permanent minority party of the few, not a national party of many.”
Roemer underscored the importance of demonstrating a strong and clear national security policy.
“In order to win elections, we Democrats must make families feel safe and secure,” cautioned Roemer.  “We should cede no quarter to Republicans on national security.”
Roemer also said that in order to grow the Party, Democrats must welcome Americans who have different views on some issues, but share bedrock Democratic values.  “The Democratic Party must continue with its long-held traditions of inclusion and tolerance,” concluded Roemer.
The DNC delegates will gather in Washington, D.C. from Feb. 10 through Feb. 12th to elect their new party chair.
About Tim Roemer
Roemer recently served on the 9-11 Commission, which investigated how national security flaws allowed terrorists to strike, and proposed reforms to revamp much of our national intelligence apparatus to meet 21st century demands.
Roemer represented Indiana in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1991 until he retired at the end of 2002.  He served on the Committee on Education and the Workforce throughout his tenure and focused on raising standards for K-12 education, and providing more opportunities for students to attend and pay for college.   House Minority Leader Richard Gephardt named Roemer to the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in 1999. After the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, he sponsored legislation which created the 9-11 Commission and played a major role in drafting intelligence reforms.
Roemer holds a B.A. from the University of California, San Diego, Calif., and an M.A. and Ph.D. from Notre Dame University.  He is married and has four children.
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