Democrats' progressive wing is gearing up for a platform battle on Israel at the party convention.

A loose group of radical Democrats has urged Democratic primary voters to vote “uncommitted” or other ballot alternatives nationwide to oppose the president's Israel policy.

Progressives received almost 100,000 votes for “uncommitted,” or 13.2% of the vote, in Michigan's February primary. It earned their movement two convention delegates. In Democratic primaries, a similar protest vote won uncommitted delegates in Minnesota, Hawaii, Washington, and Missouri.

At the convention, expects 26 uncommitted delegates and three delegates for Jason Palmer, an unknown candidate who won the American Samoa primary. However, Biden has gained more than 3,300 delegates, making the platform struggle over Israel an uphill, two-step battle.

In fact, campaigners aren't guaranteed a table place. By appointment, Biden's team will dominate DNC standing committees like the platform-writing one. Once a DNC member, Arab-American activist, and Sanders strategist, Jim Zogby claimed, “The fix is in.” All Platform Committee members will be chosen by the campaign and White House.

Zogby, who has led minor platform language disputes over Israel, is not optimistic that activists will accomplish much this year. In 2016, Sanders had enough delegates to provoke a showdown, and Zogby believes the “Uncommitted” movement will keep its few delegate slots.

Others on the left are more optimistic and believe they may influence the platform by putting outside pressure, if not internal, to push the Biden camp to avoid a public conflict.

Increasingly, congressional Democrats, even close friends of the president like Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., are open to withholding military aid if it launches a big ground offensive into Rafah.

The DNC discussed including same-sex marriage wording in 2012 before President Obama explicitly supported it, however he did so before the convention. In 2016, Sanders used his large delegate base to pressure Hillary Clinton on climate change, student debt, and international trade deals, creating the parties' most radical platform. 

By assembling Unity Task Forces of Biden and Sanders surrogates in 2020, the Biden team avoided a platform debate by producing draft party platform wording signed by both sides. These ideas outlined a more radical policy agenda than Biden had presented in his primary campaign. 

A source close to the White House said Biden's 2020 agenda was designed to unite the party after a bitter primary. Biden has decisively won renomination, and the insider emphasized that the party platform usually reflects the president's policy.


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