Democrats Host 'Next Generation Democratic Summit'
D.C. -- More than 250 students and young leaders from 45 states
and territories attended the first "Next Generation Democratic
Summit" today. The daylong summit was chaired by Democratic
Leaders Nancy Pelosi and Tom Daschle and co-chaired by Senator Hillary
Rodham Clinton and Leader Pelosi's "Thirty Something Working
are committed to listening to and working with young people,"
Leader Pelosi said. "We are hosting the Next Generation Democratic
Summit to have an open discussion about the issues that affect you
peoples future and to work together to get young people more
involved. We are pleased to have the talent and enthusiasm of young
Americans across the country who volunteer in their communities
to help make our country a better place."
WWE wrestlers Chris Nowinski and Victoria opened the first ever
"Youth Activism Town Hall" at the Summit. The Town Hall,
moderated by MTV News correspondent Gideon Yago, provided the students
and young leaders an opportunity to voice their concerns directly
to Members of Congress and gave the Members a chance to hear directly
from young leaders. The students and young leaders raised issues
including higher education, the economy, Iraq, and national security.
of Congress also listened to a panel discussion with Jean-Marie
Lawson, a young businessperson from Kentucky, and Andrew Gillum,
a Tallahassee City Commissioner, on how they became involved in
public service, and how they encourage other young people to get
people are an enormous voting block, but they do not vote in numbers
equal to their power," Pelosi told the students and young leaders.
"Only 64 percent of Americans ages 18 - 30 are registered to
vote, and only 42 percent actually voted in 2000. Together, we can
change these statistics. But we need your help to mobilize youth
to vote. By changing the statistics on who votes, we can change
the direction of our country."
of MTV News said: "MTV's goal with our 'Choose or Lose' campaign
is to amplify the voice of the young voter. This year, as we aim
to get 20 million young people to the polls in November, we are
very excited to be working with both parties to engage young people
in the election process and recognize the incredible power they
have. Today's Town Hall was a great forum for young people to express
their voices and opinions on the issues that matter most to them."
Pelosis "Thirty Something Working Group"
Generation Democratic Summit" was a joint collaboration with
members of Leader Pelosi's "Thirty-Something" working
group. The summit will be led by young leaders who are now Members
of Congress: the 13 Democratic Members of the House of Representatives
who are under the age of 40.
the Working Group Members have traveled across the country to share
with younger Americans the importance of civic engagement, and listen
to their opinions and concerns. "Thirty-Something" outreach
to college campuses and other young professionals events have taken
place in Louisiana, Alabama, Massachusetts, Kentucky, Florida, and
More then two in five (43 percent) of young adults say that the
economy and jobs will be the most important to them in deciding
whom to vote for in November, and 38 percent say that they will
choose based on candidates' education platform. Terrorism and the
war in Iraq (17 percent) emerge as second-tier issues. Democratic
Members of Congress led discussions of these issues in small breakout
sessions, and discussed policy proposals to bring down the cost
of college tuition, stop the "outsourcing" of good paying
jobs, and improve education.
Democratic Summit Agenda
and Welcome -- Welcoming remarks by Senators Hillary Clinton (D-NY)
and Tom Daschle (D-SD) and Congressmen Kendrick Meek (D-FL) and
John Lewis (D-GA).
Breakout Sessions -- Join Members of Congress for small group discussions
on public policy issues important to the next generation of Democratic
- Civil Rights
-- Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) and Reps. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and
Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-IL)
- Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) and Reps. George Miller (D-CA), Patrick
- Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Reps. Edward Markey (D-MA), Anthony
Weiner (D-NY), Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR)
- Reps. Kendrick Meek (D-FL), Rick Larsen (D-WA)
- Jobs and
the Economy - Sens. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) and Reps. Ron Kind
(D-WI), Rahm Emanuel (D-IL)
Service (SR-418) - Reps. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Barbara Lee (D-CA),
Tim Ryan (D-OH)
-- Introduction by Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, Address by Congressman
Harold Ford Jr. (D-TN)
21st Century Activism Town Hall
Remarks by Rep. Nancy Pelosi
Remarks by WWE Wrestler Christopher Nowinski
Moderator: Gideon Yago, Correspondent, MTV News
Chavez, Harvard Institute of Politics
- Andrew Gillum,
Commissioner, City of Tallahassee, Florida
- Anna Greenberg,
Vice President, Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research
Lawson, President, Kentucky Young Democrats
- Rep. Linda
The town hall
discussion will focus on what energizes the next generation. Panelists
will include young elected officials, celebrities, business leaders,
and young community leaders who have successfully engaged young
people to become more involved in the policymaking process. Members
of Congress will listen to the panel and the audience to learn how
best to motivate Democratic leaders of the next generation.