Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The One Where Some Of Us Try To Prevent The SCDP From Doing Something Stupid And Costly

First, I want you to read this post from my friend Gale Jones Carson, former SCDP Chair, longtime secretary of the TNDP and also a Democratic National Committeewoman.  In short, folks need to read this and pay attention; I will comment further afterward:

The Shelby County Democratic Party will be voting this Thursday nightOctober 13, 2011, to have a Convention rather than a Democratic Primary in March 2012

This is a major problem for several reasons: 
*     The Party would have to have the Convention next month so that they can meet the Election Commission's Dec. 8 deadline for names of the Democratic nominees to go on the March 2012 ballot.

*     Pulling together a Convention in ONE month is not practical -- no rules already established, location, money for public notices that many will not see, etc.

*   Thousands of Democrats vote in every election and normally there's only about 200 to less than 400 people who become delegates for a Convention (about 350 for the 2011 Reorganization Convention) with only 30 plus to about 80 plus people/delegates actually being able to vote for the Party Chairman and Officers.

*     Thousands of people vote in our Democratic Primaries but never participate in Democratic Party Conventions or other events/activities -- this right should not be taken away from them. During the 2008 primaries, 96,430 votes were cast in the Democratic column – President Barack Obama received 68,516 votes and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton received 27,914 votes. This election is used as an apples to apples comparison because if we are to have a Primary in 2012, it would be during the March Presidential Primary in which the same candidate (President O'bama) would be on the ballot.

*     During a Primary, Democratic Voters have 10 days to vote early and participate in absentee voting if needed -- not so with a Convention. These two rights alone are taken away with a Convention.

*     Having a Convention rather than a Democratic Primary is unprecedented in Shelby County.

Democrats all over the Country are complaining that right to vote is being taken away from senior citizens, minorities and many Democrats, how is that different from what the Shelby County Democratic Party will be doing if the Executive Committee votes to have a Convention as opposed to giving all Democrats in Shelby County the right to vote in March 2012?

Hopefully, the Shelby County Democratic Party’s Executive Committee will vote to give ALL Shelby County Democrats the right to vote in the March 2012 Primary.

In addition, there is a precedent for moving the County primary to the date of the Presidential Primary in Presidential years: this has been done since our first County primary in 1996.  It costs the SCDP ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do this.  Repeat, it costs the SCDP ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do this.

Now, in order to hold this convention, a building will have to be rented, costing the SCDP money that it needs to do little things like HAVE A HEADQUARTERS, or SUPPORT THEIR NOMINEES IN AUGUST AND NOVEMBER. Little, unimportant things like that.  Why, then, should there be a Convention (when, in fact, they are going to have to spend money on a separate Convention to pick Obama and uncommitted delegates to Charlotte 2012?) when a primary that has worked in the past can and will work again?

Are you as concerned about this as we are?  GOOD.  Find your Executive Committee member here, and call or email them and tell them to stop this foolishness NOW.

PS. If you don't know what State House District you live in (AND WHY DON'T YOU?) go here to find out.

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