This post is about politics, kind of. It’s probably more about who is informed about local issues and events.
It all started when I found myself in the waiting room at Jiffy Lube with someone who was having a telephone call about the upcoming election. No one wants to eavesdrop - - at least I don’t - - but in this case it was unavoidable. I was surprised that the the race for Democratic Central Committee came up.*
Honestly, who sits around talking about the race for Democratic Central Committee? I would hazard a guess that there are more people actually running for Democratic Central Committee than there are people in Columbia/HoCo who understand and/or truly care about this particular race.
Okay, I’m joking here, but look:
Here’s one slate:
Here’s the other slate:
Then there are individual candidates running independent of any slate:
Felix Facchine, Dhruvak Mirani, Collin Sullivan, Rich Corkran, Maureen Evans Arthurs
So, assuming you are a Democrat, you get to vote for twenty of these people. Ideally it should be ten men and ten women and I’d love to know what’s going to happen if the world of policitics ever gets caught up with comprehending what it means to be non-binary.
Today’s challenge: how do you decide which twenty?
Bigger challenge: what does the Democratic Central Committee even do? From the HCDCC website:
The Howard County Democratic Central Committee (HCDCC) is the county branch of the Maryland Democratic Party. Twenty Central Committee members are elected from three legislative districts to a four year term in the Gubernatorial Primary election.
HCDCC members must be committed to the Democratic Party and to its core values of economic fairness and equal opportunity. They should have active and recent experience in various political activities, have actively worked for or managed campaigns, or perhaps have run for office themselves. HCDCC members must support all Democratic candidates in the General Election.
The HCDCC exists to facilitate the election of local Democrats. Working at the county level, committee members train volunteers to help get out the vote, engage the Democratic community in party building activities, and encourage Democratic voters to turn out on Election Day.
How many people in the general public know this? And how many people will see all those names and just get overwhelmed and not vote in this section at all? Or just fill in boxes at random?
Apologies to those of you who already know this stuff, but, most people probably do not.
In this election two very different slates have been formed that represent different factions within the local Democratic Party. And slates are kind of like clubs, in that you have to be invited to be in one. This does not mean that the two candidates running independently aren’t necessarily qualified. If simply means that they: 1) weren’t asked to join a slate or 2) were asked but wanted to run independently of that particular slate’s political bent or ideology.
Still with me? How many people do we think are informed about just the amount I’ve stated so far?
These two slates have very different goals. For them this race is a kind of battle for the soul of the local Democratic Party. I’m not going to go into that at length here (although I certainly could in a future post if people clamored for it) but I have a gut feeling that most of the people who will be voting in this election will not be familiar with any of this.
Yes, I know that’s what door knocking is for. Not everyone answers the door, you know.
I joked with the telephone caller at Jiffy Lube that many people are still going online asking if there will be fireworks for the Fourth of July even though information about this has been all over the internet for weeks. And how many people put their trash out on a slide week even though slide weeks are widely publicized and have been happening for years?
So how is a race that many people don’t truly comprehend with over forty candidates going to play out? I suspect that one particular slate coming through intact is highly unlikely. So we’ll end up with a Democratic Central Committee made of of an assortment of strong minded people who may feel ideologically incompatible with each other. Kind of like putting a bunch of cats and dogs in a sack.
Maybe that’s a good thing? Maybe local Dems will have to work through what separates them in order to fulfill the mission of their office?
I just don’t know.
*Nothing confidential was related in this phone call, in case you were concerned.