Wednesday, July 20, 2005

An open letter to Desi and Brad

You've done a terrific job, both of you. You have brought new people into this party and your time is at hand to have a real say in how this party is run.

I presume you've seen the article from Wednesday's Memphis Flyer talking about the upcoming Convention on Saturday; it even shows the picture Desi and Ann Sandberg appeared
in with David Upton back when Howard Dean came to Nashville earlier this year.

According to the article, Upton is quoted as saying that the race for chair is evenly contested between David Cocke and Cherry Davis. I take that to mean that they both have the same potential number of executive committee members committed to voting for each side, provided all delegates show up on Saturday.

However, that does NOT mean that either of them have 34 seats lined up on the Executive Committee, not by a long shot. This, of course, is where you come in. Only you know from your own numbers how many districts you control, and as such, how many potential seats on the new ExecCom you will have. That should give you an idea how Saturday will play out.

I URGE you to pick a candidate (and not necessarily Cocke or Davis) to unite behind. While it's no secret I am supporting Joe Young, if you don't pick Joe, you still need to have one voice to stand behind for the vote on Saturday.

1) If you can elect 20-25 seats on the committee this Saturday, your candidate can WIN. How? With 20+ votes, there's a reasonably good chance that this candidate will come in second, meaning that if Cherry Davis is the leader and your person is second, who do you think the Cocke people will support? Switch those names around and I am willing to bet the rent money that if your person comes in second behind David Cocke, the Davis supporters will flock to her/him rather than see Cocke win the election.

2) OK, what if our candidate DOESN'T finish first or second, smart guy, what then? Well, that's when things get interesting. Frankly, you will have the balance of power at that point. USE IT. You may even consider having your folks PASS on a second vote; if no one gets to 34 votes, they will have to push back the election to the next scheduled meeting on August 4.

However, if you've gotten this far, you didn't need me to tell you that. Good luck, and let's have fun on Saturday!


Anonymous said...

Right now the coalition has the largest possible block on the executive committee. But imagine on Saturday, they are reduced to third behind Chism and then Cocke. But Kuhn gets elected EC chairman. Is that to high a price to pay for the coalition?

Anonymous said...

Right now I hear that chism will pull his
votes in the direction of Matt if he feels that Cherry can't front it for him.
Thats what some x-leaders want anyway.

Anonymous said...

coalition has nothing in:

They are hoping for a strong showing but may not get it in:

Praying for miracles in:

Wow, amazing how things change and end up remaining the same old same old. Chism vs Ford.

L. said...


therefore Coalition=Toast

LeftWingCracker said...

Great posts so far, folks, keep it up.

However, it's not difficult to figure out from which camp the last one came from.

All along, the Cocke camp (though not necessarily David himself) has tried to put this as a THEM versus US situation, meaning that if you support ANYONE other than David Cocke, you're supporting Sidney Chism's folks.

Which, of course, is why I'm not supporting either. I find the other posts fascinating, though.

As for dear old 93, my speculation from viewing the list is Coalition 10, Cocke 7; however, if any of the Coalition waffle, that could change, and that's what the Cocke side is counting on.

Matt (not Kuhn) said...

It is interesting that the Shelby County Democratic party was faced with a new scenario. Because their are new players, the system doesn't know what to do and it therefore went back to default. Ford faction vs Herenton faction. The coalition has almost neutralized itself. If it gets 6 to 8 people on the EC, they will be lucky. Chism may have 22 plus the 8 of the coalition and maybe Talut has 3. 33 total. Cocke will then have 34. The Chism guys working inside and Upton hitting from outside successfully split the coalition. Saturday will be incredible theater. Maybe TV crews will be there so I can see it on the 6 pm news.

Laura said...

Down 'n' Dirty
Local Democrats trade punches and split hairs as the chairmanship contest heats up.
Quote about coalition:
"This group constituted somewhere between a quarter and a third of the elected delegates."
25% of 67= 17
33% of 67= 22
Note to the coalition: Even in a perfect world you could only max out theorectically at 22 executive committee members. Did you over estimate your own strentgh?

Diedre said...

Hello Leftwing Cracker,
Can you get a hold of the email sent out by the coalition that showed the results of the straw poll. I heard Joe won with people expected to be on the EC, but lost in the general delegate vote? I'd like to see how close it actually was. If the convention goes bad like some here seem think it will, there will probably be a lot of finger pointing.

LeftWingCracker said...

I'll do my best!

if someone out there who has my email address has this information, please shoot it to me.

You know, it's always the posters and the readers who make a blog successful, and y'all are terrific!

As Dean Martin used to say, keep those cards & letters comin' in, folks, I read every one!

takebackamerica said...

I am loosely affiliated with the MDIA folks as I was loosely affiliated with the Women for Kerry folks - why? Because I hate George Bush and his ilk and almost everything he stands for. So I thought I would try to get involved to see if I could put my money where my mouth is and help the cause. Kerry's campaign was the first campaign I have worked on since the late '70's - and I saw many people in the Kerry campaign and at the earlier convention in June who were in the same boat. Then the TN Waltz biz happened, which, no matter how it plays out, makes the Democrats look bad, confirms many folks' notions of what is wrong with the local Democratic party (that it is in-bred, corrupt and ineffective - which by the way, is the impression that many people got trying to volunteer during the last campaign cycle and previous campaigns). Now watching this whole convention thing go down - reading this blog and the Flyer - it appears that the "factions" are willing to go down with the ship, slinging mud all the while. While "Anonymous" sounds like someone who has labored in the vineyards long and hard, he/she also sounds like someone who typifies the kind of attitude that keeps other folks out of local politics who might otherwise get involved to help the party and the country - partisan, somewhat angry and nasty. Guess that's politics, and I guess the choice for those of us who don't have much stomach for it, is to leave it to the in-fighters or suck it up and do the best we can. Reading all of this, I think I might have to leave it for the in-fighters. Or at best, remain "loosely affiliated". It is a shame that we Democrats don't seem to be able to muster any kind of discipline a la the Republicans to get something done in an orderly way - as an ignorant outsider, it seems to me in light of the Tennessee Waltz scandal, bringing in someone new and unaffiliated with the "factions" might send a healthy message. But, like I said, I'm just an ignorant outsider.

Jon Carroll said...

{Ducking all of the flying rhetorical bombs}

LeftWingCracker said...

The ANON post is one of the great comments posted to the blog today, and I know what this person is talking about, because I've been on the inside. I just emailed it to my list, in fact.

You get that far inside on a campaign when decisions are made on the fly and your only focus is about staying on message and countering your opponent's attacks and all of a sudden you find yourself in 24/7 campaign mode, neverending. That's the problem we have today, right now, with regards to the fight over the ExecCom and the chairmanship; the hardcore have run off everyone else who might consider getting involved, and we have to get these folks back and keep them in the party.

People who are that far in, as I was (and will be again at some point) need to step back and get some perspective on how the public perceives the SCDP. I think ANON NAILS it.

Becky said...

The straw poll that I and the other Coalition delegates and alternates participated in was meant to be propretary information. That doesn't mean that someone won't "give it up" but that someone is not me. I will, however, tell you that the information you have that Joe Young had the most votes among the delegates seeking a position on the comittee is wrong.

LeftWingCracker said...

Becky, someone (not me, because this is the first i've seen of it) has leaked to Jackson baker..

Matt (not Kuhn) said...

Are there theories as to why Matt Kuhn came out as the "consensus candidate" right after the first debate. He wasn't around for the caucus. Who told him to run and why? That seems like the biggest question of this year's SCDP restructuring. What was his motivation? Is he going to drop out since people think he is tied to Chism. Is he even tied to Chism?

Anonymous said...

Here is a dailykos type poll.
Did the Coalition endorse Kuhn because of:
B-Chism steered them into taking his group's beating
C-Sink Cocke's candidacy
D-loyalty to his Mom

Anonymous said...

A - Principle

Anonymous said...

I like Matt, but he his tied to Chism. His mother is a long time supporter of Gayle Jones Carson- who is a major Herenton/Chism player and Matt himself work for Shep Wilburn - who also has ties to the HC "faction"
Some of those people posting are dead on- if you'll notice - no one's talking about Joe Young- the only candidate who truly has no ties. Many in Democracy for America lobbied for his candidacy for that very reason and were turned down flat by the Leadership of MDIA -- who, lest you be fooled, had this plan in play all along. - Hence why they are led by Norma Lester, another major Chism player.

Anonymous said...

Matt has worked with a broad spectrum of politicians and has shown he can work effectively with all "factions," - from Ford to Chism, Wharton, Tanner, etc. That is EXACTLY why Matt is an ideal CONSENSUS candidate to unify and revitalize the Shelby County Demcratic Party. That is the POINT of his candidacy - UNITY.

What happened to the concept of the will of the MAJORITY - votes in a DEMOCRACY are decided by the MAJORITY; ALL Coalition delegates and alternates had a vote. The VOTE supported Matt Kuhn, not Joe Young.

As for Joe Young having no ties, take off your rose-colored glasses. Who introduced Joe as "her" candidate - Kathryn Bowers. This hardly makes Joe Young the "only candidate with NO TIES." Think again!

Anonymous said...

Maybe you should remove your rose colored glasses. Matt=Chism. The Coalition ran two candidates -one with African Americans and one with white Dems. They waited it out and when a "consensus" emerged - they threw in together- in dramatic announcement form (which I bet was written two months ago) You don't think Chism was promised a slot for Cherry Davis in exchange for that coup. GROW UP! Matt has no experience running Shelby County wide politics- which I think we can all agree is politically unique- other than his association with Shep Wilburn- which really is not a ringing endorsement of his qualifications. I know some people think that's what is great about him - but . . . well if you like the sacrafical lambs to the wolves scenerio - so be it. When it all goes to S---, I guess he can turn to his old buddy Chism for advise.

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