Gustavus College Democrats

Spring 2004 Meeting Minutes

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February 12, 2004

Submitted by Megan Buckingham

Attendance: Allan Johnson, Matt Pollari, Eric Nelson, Megan Buckingham, Joel Wenzel Megan Wile, Laura Palzer, Andrew Erickson, Gabe Becker, Elizabeth Harri, Dan Goldstein, Peter Grafstrom, and Matt Klaber.

I. Meeting Time discussed. Decided for Tuesday nights at 7:00 in the 49er Room so that Megan W. has her “Friends” time slot back.

II. NO MEETING NEXT WEEK because there is a DFL get together at Godfathers at 6:00 (Tuesday the 17th) and we’re all welcome!

III. If you’re interested in working swing states over spring break contact Andrew.

IV. Peace conference @ St. Olaf on Feb. 21st

V. Homeless/Poverty lobby day Feb. 17th: Vans from GAC are going up to the capitol in the morning; Contact Bill at the Center for Vocational Reflection for more info. Liz says please, please come – registered drivers for the 15 passenger vans are particularly needed. This is just one way to get involved during Civic Engagement Month!

VI. More lobbying: Tues. 24th is private college day. See Andrew for more info, I guess.

VII. Wanna hang out with a bunch of old people? What better way than to become an election judge? Volunteers needed for next November.

VIII. Ruth Johnson is gearing up her campaign and we are gearing up our support.

IX. Prep for Demfest is getting serious this semester.
Eric is in charge of coordinating our preparations with CDMs

Joel is in charge of calling for speakers: Becky Lourey (although if this one goes through we will need someone to coordinate a daycare center for demfest!), surviving Wellstones?, Jeff Blodgett, Bill Luther, Ruth Johnson, Molly Ivins, Matt Entenza, Buck Humphrey, Mike Hatch, Mark Dayton, Betty McCollum, Walter Mondale, Ted Mondale, Plus Megan W. is going to write a letter to the presidential candidates to let them all know that we wouldn’t mind if they showed up.

X. Q&A is working on a “Gays and Politics” discussion and they want Dems to cosponsor

XI. Gabe and Eric have a mission: Finding out what the heck we can we do with our give-away budget!

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February 24, 2004

Submitted by Megan Buckingham

Called to order at 7:07 by our tardy president, Andrew

Attendance: We forgot to take attendance this week, woops.

I. John Kerry tomorrow at Macalester. Is anyone going?

II. Mixed Blood production on the Bill of Rights – if you want more info email Andrew.

III. Pizza and Politics ideas (although Andrew says the College Republicans are organizing this semester:
1. Gay marriage w/Q&A
2. Space and spending (i.e. Mars)
3. The role of 3rd parties w/Greens? – and lets not forget our friends the Constitutionalists. We could invite their chairperson, Pfgd Jghdtn, to speak.
4. What is the role of the gov’t when it comes to humanitarianism?
5. The religious left (and right, of course) w/chaplains, campus Christian org.s, the CVR?

IV. Prep for DemFest:
1. Peter G. in charge of calling hotels in St. Peter
2. Rooms needed for DemFest!! If you have space in your dorm room email Andrew and let him know how many guests you can take, just for one night.

V. WE’RE BROKE! Although not in the hole, which is good. Hopefully we can get some $ from state Dems for DemFest, but we’ve still got some issues. We have now formed a task force to determine what exactly we can do with our give away money, Treasurers: contact Kirsten Nicklson and Dave Lee. Also, how can we get more money? If you have any fundraising ideas please, please share them with the treasurers (Eric Nelson and Gabe).

VI. Building Bridges: We’re doing a workshop and we need ideas!
1. “Just war.” Enough said.
2. Global Community?
3. Andrew, Me (Megan), Joel, and Gabe in charge of this

VII. No Meeting Next Week!!! Come to the caucuses instead! 7:00 p.m. in the high school cafeteria. Be there or be square, you don’t have to be registered. Plus, there will be info about being an election judge there, and of course we all really, really want to be election judges, right? Hey, more time spent with Grandma.

VIII. Tabling: Tuesday, Peter D. is in charge, and will probably be on March 2. Show up if you want to!!! Plus, email Andrew anti-Bush articles so he can print them and have them for tabling. And Ruth Johnson might come, yay! Andrew and Bjorn will work on the gay marriage article, together (innuendo there implied by Andrew).

IX. End of the year banquet: we actually have $ for this so lets plan it and lets use it!

X. New project: Tye dying cats and selling them to dogs. We’ll be working with ASAP on this one.

XI. Community Action day: we need a project. We’ll be working with Mankato so something for both groups together, maybe we should talk to the CSC – Bill Schoonover.

XII. ASAP again: hate mail to Nader. Interesting, eh.

XIII. The irony of Student Senate budget allotments: Food allotment: $0
Eating Utensils: $20
Anyone else think this is strange?

XIV. Gearing up for next year’s election:
1. Rock the Vote
a. working w/Senate?
b. Going to the HS!
c. Tabling, tabling, tabling
d. Faculty interest?
e. Televised debate: something in the caf.
f. Something on the mall – free hot dogs/veggie alternatives?

XV. T-shirts: Bjorn contact Caleb? Raj’s idea: Bushit

XVI. I think that’s about it, but there was a lot going on tonight so if I left something out email me and I’ll up date the minutes. Wait, NEW TIME STARTING IN TWO WEEKS: 7:30. Later so that our presidents and Joel can show up on time, oh, and Raj too. Maybe we should tell him that it starts at 6:30 so that we can get him there before the meeting is over.

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March 9, 2004

Attendance: Gabe Becker, Allan Johnson, Matt Pollari, Eric Nelson, Bjorn Bjorkland, Megan Buckingham, and Joel Wenzel, Peter Grafstrom, Mark Gonnella, Andrew Erickson, Matt Klaber, Kerstin Hodne, Megan Torfin, Kate Erickson, Laura Lewandowski, and Peter Dahlberg.

I. Items not discussed at the meeting because Andrew is a major dork and he forgot the agenda. So even if you made it to the meeting, make sure to read this part:

  • Ex-governor Al Quie: preaching at 8, 9:20 and 10:30 am at Trinity Lutheran and presenting at 3:30 at First Lutheran about “Riding the Divide” – by the way, Andrew, why is this in here? Wasn’t he a Republican governor?
  • Anyone want to help on Herseth’s campaign? South Dakota seat vacated by Janklow, June 1st is election Day, help in days leading up to it. for more info.
  • Meeting time change: 7:00 not 7:30, in the 49er Room

II. Wellstone Memorial Concert/benefit for a documentary (on Wellstone)

  • “Carry it Forward”
  • free but donations are requested
  • Featuring Folk Singer/Songwriter Amy Martin
  • Sunday March 21, 12:30 pm, Riverview Theater, 3800 42nd Ave. So. Minneapolis.

III. DemFest: DATE CHANGE: NOW April 23-24

IV. Bjorn is short a testicle. Enough said.

V. Pizza and Politics: Role of the 3rd Party March 16th

VI. March 18th: debate on gay marriage @ the police station in Mankato – Ruth Johnson will be there

VII. Shirts: $7.50 for white or $8.50 for colored. Bushit – let Andrew know if you want one

VIII. Safe Zone (Q&A activity) tomorrow from 6:30-9:30 in a banquet room.

IX. Building Bridges: we’re at 2:30-3:10 on Sat. March 20, topic: Building a Democratic Society.”

X. MLK Memorial lecture: Thursday March 11

  • 7:00: Alumni Hall; William Greaves presents and discusses his documentary
  • 3-3:30: D-Center reception for Greaves
  • 3:30-4:30: D-Center informal discussion with Greaves

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March 16, 2004

The meeting this week was conducted at the conclusion of Pizza 'n' Politics at approximately 8 P.M.

I. Peace for Paul concert: Featuring Folk Singer/Songwriter Amy Martin. Sunday March 21, 12:30 pm, Riverview Theater, 3800 42nd Ave. So. Minneapolis. Talk to Meghan Kane or Katie Hoeschen if you want space in the van going up to the Cities.

II. Demfest: April 23-24, to coincide with the CDM Spring Convention. Joel and Peter G. were reminded of their responsibilities.

III. The Democratic National Committee is sponsoring an essay contest to get young people involved in the party. The winners get the chance to speak at the Democratic National Convention in July during prime time. Pretty exciting, eh? Contest flyer (MS Word file).

IV. Building Bridges Conference is this weekend! Go!

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March 23, 2004

Attendance: Gabe Becker, Allan Johnson, Matt Pollari, Eric Nelson, Bjorn Bjorkland, Megan Buckingham, and Joel (“The Body” – my question is what kind of body are we actually talking about here?) Wenzel, Andrew Erickson, Matt Klaber, Kerstin Hodne, Megan Torfin, Megan Wille, Adam D. Johnson, Jess Jacobs, and Peter Dahlberg.

I. T-shirts: If you want one, email Andrew NOW. Bushit. They will cost between 7 and 8 dollars.
II. Demfest:

  • Still need spaces (for CDMs from around MN to sleep)
    a. How many can YOU take? “ Two dudes, one girl.” – Peter Dahlberg.
    . Other takers? Email Andrew.
  • In charge of – Equipment rental: Megan Wille, Advertising: Peter Dahlberg
  • Band: Josh Pine and the Pine Tones
III. P&P: Next up – Religion and politics. Religious right and left.
IV. Guest Audrey: bringing in a speaker, Laura Aelnhofer, from the Sierra Club (Bush on environment and other environmental issues) – can we help sponsor? Sure! Well, we can pay her with knives, forks, spoons and the like at least…
V. Want an internship this summer? See Andrew.
VI. Activism: Bush checks (this will be fun you want to read this part):
Find one stupid thing Bush has done/said and send it to Andrew so we can make signs next week. This is not a difficult homework assignment, kids, he [Bush] provides plenty of material that we can put to great use in this project.

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March 23, 2004

Attendance: Eric Nelson, Gabe Becker, Spence McGrath, Andrew Erickson, Laura Lewandowski, Matt Pollari, Allan Johnson, Peter Grafstrom, Peter Dahlberg, Jess Jacobs.

I. MN for Kerry: Tuesday April 20 in St. Paul:
II. We love Steve Sviggum and his views on 3rd parties: “everyone gets one vote, that’s how a democracy works.” And Bjorn just wants you know that his one vote goes to you, Steve. Apparently Allan’s got two votes, though, and he voted for Bush, twice!
III. Pizza & Politics:

  • Topic: Little Laura Lew: Why she’s so wonderful and how we should worship her
  • Actual topic: Religion in Politics
  • Date: April 27th
  • Gabe: room reservations
  • Peter G: talk to profs./chaplains

IV. 2004 Campaign Training: June 4-7 in DC; more info at
V. Phoning: Eric Nelson is now in charge
VI. T-shirts are a hit! 93 sold and we’re not even to Demfest yet!
VII. Final Banquet: May 7th (Friday)

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April 13, 2004

Attendance: Matt Klaber, Megan Wile, Gabe Becker, Peter Grafstrom, Matt Pollari, Megan Torfin, Kerstin Hodne, Andrew Erickson, Jess Jacobs, Bjorn, Eric Nelson, Brian Fahey, Late Little Laura Lu, Megan Buckingham.

I. P&P: Religion in Politics

  • Peter: talk to chaplains
    “That’s all a woman needs to be happy: a man in her life.” – Peter G.
  • Laura: Where are we on room?
  • How do we get a religious right person to come?

II. Demfest:

  • Rooms? Olin 103? Laura Lu, where are you?
  • Food: Sat lunch: grill
    Sat supper: pizza
  • What sounds good to you guys?
    “BEER!” - Megan Wille
    “Vegans aren’t real people, anyway.” - Bjorn
    “They only count for half a person.” – Peter G.
  • Speakers all maybes: WE NEED ANSWERS
    o If desperate: Donny O, Terry…

III. Day of silence: April 21th, GBLT.
IV. Campaign Training and Job fair: June 4-7th in DC, $300 includes meals, lodging, program
V. Rally @ the capitol for the homeless: Sun April 18th
VI. Kerry Organizational Meeting: April 20th, Lakes and Plains Regional Council of Carpenters and Joiners at 700 Olive St. St. Paul, MN. Sessions from 5:30-7 and 7:30-9.
VII. Phone banking: starting July 1st, every MW 6-9 pm. SDL Headquarters 255 E. Plato Blvd. St. Paul.
VIII. Walk for Democracy: Granny D (Fair and clean elections) – Monday April 19th in Mankato.
IX. Panel on sex offenders: U of M, April 30
· “He wouldn’t have to force her to do anything.” -Bjorn on Megan’s reaction to Andrew’s convicted sex assailant friend.
VII. Interested in Internships?: DFL Caucus (Field Organizer), NARAL (election, organizing and outreach, voter’s guide).
VIII. How do we get on the College Calendar?: the College Reps are, but we apparently just aren’t good enough. Peter D. do you know what we can do about this?
IX. End of the year party: Date: May 8th, Sat. night @ Little Laura Lu’s. Be there or be square.
X. Coming soon to a meeting near you: What are we doing? What is our purpose? What else should we be doing? How are we promoting, following through with what we profess to believe in? All that and more, probably one of the meetings right after demfest is over. MAILING LIST: we really want your input on this! Why don’t you come? What would make you want to come to meetings? We need new voices.

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April 20, 2004

Attendance (18): Allan Johnson, Erik Ruser, Bjorn Bjorkland, Katrina Kleinwachter, Megan Wille, Andrew Erickson, Megan Torfin, Kerstin Hodne, Matt Klaber, Matt Polski, Tom Dolan, Matt Pollari, Kate Erickson, Peter Grafstrom, Joel Wenzel, Gabe Becker, Peter Dahlberg, Laura Lewandowski.

Andrew called the meeting to order at sometime after 7

I. DEMFEST is happening this weekend:

  • Josh Pine and the Pinetones stopped by to talk about performing on Saturday. We had talked about 12-1 but changed it to 5-6.
    o Need sound equipment (4 amps or a PA), Green M&Ms.
    o If nothing else they can do an acoustic set around our cotton candy machine.

II. We forgot about Demfest for a bit and talked about other things:

  • Kerry contact needed on campus. Peter Grafstrom volunteered?
  • Kerry fundraises on May 3rd. Cost is $35 for students. Nobody seemed interested in forking over the money. But Matt Klaber might be able to get you in.
  • Andrew received some information on being a campaign organizer in New Hampshire. If you are interested, contact Andrew.
  • Pizza ‘n’ Politics:
    o No room yet for the 27th. But we will have it at 6 pm. When the room is known you will be informed.
    o In case you forgot, the topic is Religion and Politics.
    o Peter G. hasn’t talked to the chaplains like he said he would.
  • Tomorrow is a Day of Silence to recognize the harassment, discrimination, and silencing of GLBT students in schools. Matt Klaber passed around blue cards that can be carried around tomorrow to explain why you are keeping silent.
  • Bjorn informed every one of the CDM officer elections happening this weekend and urged people to consider running for office. Check out for more information on available positions.

III. Back to Demfest:

  • CDM needs to know which rooms will be used this weekend. So far we have:
    o Friday Night – one of the banquet rooms.
    o Saturday – SSC 101 and possibly 106 & 107 @ 2 if needed.
  • We need lodging for the CDMs coming this weekend. A sheet was passed around for people to write how many people they could host. More room is needed. IF YOU HAVE ROOM TO HOST SOMEONE WE NEED TO KNOW! Email Andrew if you can host anyone and didn’t sign up at the meeting.
  • Help is needed setting up and taking down. Once again, contact Andrew if you can help.
  • We have a cotton candy machine. Bjorn thought the money would have been better spent on escorts.
  • Advertising – Kate Erickson fulfilled her quota by making a meeting this semester. She is taking care of advertising. If anyone can help make signs, contact her or Andrew. Signs and table tents will be made.
  • Joel will be walking around with a sandwich board.

FINALLY, everyone who has one should wear his or her Bushit shirts on Friday. Also, tell EVERYONE about Demfest!

Meeting kind of dissolved at about 8 pm.

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April 27, 2004

Attendance: Andrew Erickson, Laura Palzer, Katrina Kleinwachter, Megan Wille, Peter Dahlberg, Matt Klaber, Bjorn Bjorklund, Eric Nelson, Gabe Becker, Spence McGrath, Megan Buckingham, Johan Eriksson.

I. P&P: Something seemed to be missing, what was that?...Oh, yeah, Republicans!
1. For all those who were caught up in the emailing frenzy two weeks ago (and of course for all the rest of us who woke up one morning to find our inboxes overflowing…) here is the opportunity to discuss these issues in person. We want to define what we stand for, what are we doing, why? What should we change, what are we doing right? If you have an opinion on this topic, particularly if you don’t frequent meetings (*cough, Adam Barrett* - no, really, we want to hear what everybody has to say and we want to do it in an environment that is conducive to open and respectful discussion and reflection) or if you have yet to voice your perspective on this topic than this is the meeting for you! Come one, come all!
III. Paddle for the Presidency
1. Non-partisan
2. July 26-8
3. Purpose: decrease youth political apathy, meet candidates, register people to vote and oh-so-much more!
IV. Bruce Bjork
1. Anybody able to help this semester?
2. Lit drops (see the email that Andrew sent around)
V. Earth Smart Evening
1. Thurs. April 29th
2. Holiday Inn Mankato 5-7 pm
3. Kim Carlson (KARE 11’s “Earth Smart Consumer”)
4. Rolf Nordstrom (Expert on Sustainability)
VI. “Uncovered: The Whole Truth about the Iraq War”
1. Thurs. April 29th
2. Shown at North Kato Police Annex behind North Kato library
3. Discussion after
VII. Kerry stuff:
1. Phonebanking: M-F 6-9 pm; Sat 10-3; Where? I don’t know, you’ll have to ask Andrew.
2. Fundraiser: Monday May 3rd at Mpls. Convention Center
VIII. Senate District 23 (which is us) DFL meeting
1. Sat. May 1st, high noon
2. Alliance of Friendship Center in Gaylord
IX. Help Rebecca Otto Door knock:
1. This week and next (for more info see Andrew)
X. Help Steve Simon lit Drop
1. May 1-2, 12:30 pm
2. St. Louis Park: 3000 Raleigh Ave., corner of Raleigh and Minnetonka Blvd., across the street fro City Hall
3. call 952-920-1611 for more info
XI. Frontline: Something about Bush always evoking religion
1. This is Raj’s contribution to the P&P on religion
2. Thurs. on PBS

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May 4, 2004

Attendance: Eric Nelson, Peter Grafstrom, Matt Klaber, Matt Pollari, Spence MGrath, Megan Wille, Andrew Erickson, Katrina Kleinwachter, Allan Johnson, Peter Dahlberg, Megan Buckingham, Joel Wenzel, Bjorn Bjorklund.

I. Internship Opportunity 28A (Cannon Falls, Goohue, Lake City, Red Wing, Wabasha, etc…)
II. Kerry intern/campus contact? Did Peter Grafstrom say he was doing this? If anyway knows someone at another MN college who would be willing to be a JK contact please contact Peter.
III. Help for special election in SD: Stephanie Herseth, June 1st – interest expressed by Eric Nelson
IV. Walk for Wind – Memorial Day weekend, walking from New Ulm to Mankato
V. PAR-AY! Saturday, 1:00 at Little Laura Lew’s. RSVP to Andrew
VI. Thank your Treasurers! We actually have more money for next year that we got this year, and it’s for important things like food and not so much utensils.
VII. Big question for the day:
Who are the GAC Dems and what are we doing?

  • “We’re just people who sit around all the time talking about Kerry and how great he is.” – Eric Nelson
  • Matt K – We should be doing more campaigning (on campus); Next year- permanent position, “standing subcommittee” – person in charge of campaigning. Also, more personal contact with more removed members.
  • BIG ISSUE: Do we want to push the Kerry issue?
    o Yes, we have to. CDMS and College Dems = we are a part of the DFL and we support their candidates, including Kerry. This does NOT mean that we all personally love Kerry or his agenda, but come fall we do support him (and for that matter the other Democratic candidates).
    o We can’t just be anti-Bush, we’re going to have to step it up and be pro-Kerry.
    o Katrina: there is a difference between internal and external communication: ie. We may not love Kerry but our front is support.
    o Progressive/Liberal: great for off-season discussion, but during the election crunch-time we must support the candidates. Part of our mission, our purpose is to examine our priorities, to encourage discussion, to shape GAC Dems and the Democratic Party, but we have four months every two years that have to be dedicated to election issues.
    o In retrospect Bjorn Bjorklund admits: “I really didn’t have anything intelligent to say.”
  • Strategies for the fall
    o Work with other liberal/progressive campus organizations: Targeted literature
    o Tabling, FOODJ! Theme per week – table every week with a different target each week.
    o Raj’s big idea for the night: Let’s get a DONKEY for the student activities fair. Now let’s just see the Republicans get an elephant. – Spence is in charge of donkey-duty
    o Letters to the editor – Megan W and Andrew’s new paper
    o Going to the HS to register kids
    o Raj’s capstone for the evening: “We support not a personality but a platform.” Plus, he wants to go door knocking at Patrick’s (he’s just brimming over with good ideas tonight!)
    o Absentee ballot advocacy – (for students traveling abroad) we need to get on that this spring.
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