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Friday, June 05, 2015

 8:00 PM 

Tate gives final report as chair

In his final report to the party, Mike Tate summed up the Dems' circumstances under Gov. Scott Walker by quoting Winston Churchill: "If you're going through hell, keep going."

"The rise of Scott Walker and the tea party has not just held us back," Tate said, "but left too many families behind."

Tate acknowledged the party's struggles in the past five years, He said the reasons for those losses are complicated and cannot be attributed specifically to turnout or candidates.

"I'm even told that in some places on the Internet," Tate said, "it says this is all my fault."

He said, though, that those struggles have strengthened the state party, which has reached a record 15,000 members. And he highlighted the party's wins, such as sending Tammy Baldwin to the U.S. Senate and re-electing Barack Obama.

He insisted the party is witnessing the rebirth of the progressive movement and is poised to reclaim the Legislature and governor's office.

And the person elected tomorrow to replace him and lead that movement, Tate said, needs the entire party to rally around. He said each candidate — Martha Laning, Stephen Smith, Joe Wineke and Jason Rae — is a "great Democrat."

Tate, 36, closed his final report by thanking the party for the time he has spent as chair.

"Words can't express," he said, "the gratitude I feel for being able to match my love with my labor for the past six years."

  -- By Chris Thompson

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