Local Dems brace for Age of Trump

In case you missed it, Sen. Dan Wolf delivered farewell remarks, capping off a six-year run representing the Cape & Islands District….
(story originally published in the Cape Cod Times on Dec. 5, 2016 by Geoff Spillane)

HYANNIS – Local Democrats are wasting no time organizing and recharging in the wake of last month’s state and national elections.

Approximately 125 people gathered at the Mid-Cape Democratic Campaign Headquarters in Hyannis last week in response to the outcome of the 2016 presidential election.

A movement, called “Cape and Islands Stronger Together,” calls itself a group of local Democrats and citizens formed to “stand strong and not give in to fear and division,” according to its Facebook page.

Julian Cyr, the state senator-elect for the Cape and Islands District, won’t be sworn in until next month, but appears to already be the standard-bearer for the region’s Democrats.

Cyr, known for success as a community organizer and implementing grassroots political field operations, was asked to convene the meeting.

“After the election, I received a lot of congratulatory calls, and also heard from a lot of people expressing concern and uncertainty about the national election,” Cyr said. “Trump only won one town on the Cape. Concern about a Trump administration is not just a partisan issue in Massachusetts.”

The group committed to advocate for universal pre-kindergarten for every child on the Cape and Islands and to promote solutions for affordable housing, environmental issues and building a local “culture of recovery” to end the opioid epidemic. The group also pledged to welcome all to the region regardless of nationality, race, religion, gender and sexual orientation.

The meeting was coordinated for local Democrats to discuss “what’s next?” after the election, according to Robin Kampmann Gunderson, of Cotuit, a co-coordinator of the Mid-Cape Democratic Headquarters and one of four local party leaders who founded the group.

“There was incredible passion in the room and a real commitment to working toward Democratic values,” said Gunderson. “We are defining our role as we go along and will gather again after the New Year.”

The group is coordinating bus transportation to take people to the Women’s March on Washington and the Boston Women’s March for America on Jan. 21, the day after the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump.

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State Sen. Viriato “Vinny” deMacedo, R-Plymouth, has been named Legislator of the Year by the Massachusetts Police Association.

The award was presented to deMacedo for his efforts advocating for police officers and public safety in the state. Recent initiatives undertaken by deMacedo include supporting the allocation of $300,000 in the fiscal year 2017 budget for bulletproof vests for municipal police departments and sponsoring mandatory sentencing for individuals who assault a law enforcement officer.

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The Orleans Democratic Town Committee will meet at 5 p.m. Wednesday at the home of Chairwoman Robin Hubbard for a holiday potluck event. Attendees are asked to bring a canned good or paper product for the Lower Cape Outreach Council.

Additional information can be obtained by contacting Hubbard at rlhubbard46@yahoo.com or 508-255-2890.

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The Barnstable Democratic Town Committee holiday party will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Embargo restaurant on Main Street in Hyannis.

Attendees are asked to bring a donation for the MSPCA, including unopened pet food, pet toys and gently used blankets.

– Follow Geoff Spillane on Twitter: @GSpillaneCCT. Items for the Political Notes column may be sent to gspillane@capecodonline.com.

Cindy Caughey

In Good Company Design, Barnstable, MA