There’s quite a bit of buzz around the upcoming election for Democratic Central Committee. There are 30 candidates for twenty seats. 16 are running as a slate called HoCo Forward. If you want to learn more about the slate, they are having a meet and greet event today at four pm at BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse. If I get my Sunday chores done and get my act together, I’ll be there.
What I want to talk about today is an issue which came up for me during the last election. It’s my understanding that the goal of the Democratic Central Committee is to get Democrats elected, and that they are honor-bound to support all local Democrats who are running. So what do you do if you have someone running who has demonstrated poor judgment, or dishonesty, or a lack of responsiveness to constituents, or questionable ethical practices?
Quite bluntly, what if there is a bad Democrat?
I think everyone knows that I’m a Democrat. No surprise there. And I admit that I am much more upset when I find the occasional Democrat who violates what I believe to be core values of my party. It’s true. I get much angrier. I truly believe that Democrats shouldn’t be like that and I feel that candidates/elected officials who fail to represent the best of what our party espouses let me and all Democrats down.
I do not support the tribal practice of “Democrats are my people and therefore even a bad Democrat is better than the alternative.”
Now I have seen a lot of pontificating online recently where local progressives are putting Republicans on the spot for being the party of Trump and, therefore, not to be trusted. “What are you doing to change the direction of your party if you are a Republican who does not endorse the policies and actions of Mr. Trump,” the question goes.
It’s a valid question, although I’m a bit concerned about its almost weaponized use in a non-partisan race like the BOE. But that’s another blog post altogether.
Here’s the thing. If we are to accept that line of questioning as valid, then we must also accept questions about what Democrats will do faced with a bad Democratic candidate. And by bad I do not mean inexperienced, an oddball, well-meaning but long-winded, or generally okay but unlikely to get elected. I mean, what will the local Democratic Party do to reject truly bad Democrats? How do we work to make our party better?
It seems to me that we are great at asking the other guys uncomfortable questions. How do we answer this one? If we want people to place their trust in us when they go to the polls, don’t we need to prove we are trustworthy in the choices that we make?
That’s a question I will be asking candidates for Democratic Central Committee.