Not that long ago I gave the HoCoForward slate of candidates for Democratic Central Committee my endorsement. And I endorsed four candidates not on the slate-- Bob Ford, Dave Grabowski, Sue Geckle, and Margaret Weinstein. And I am writing to reinforce those choices.
However, there's a been a bit of negativity recently, within the last couple of weeks in fact, as many of the candidates who are not affiliated with the slate decided to band together on their own, as the "independent" candidates for HoCo DCC.
Obviously, in this light,"independent" is a synonym for "unaffiliated". It doesn't mean "independent" in the partisan sense. Yet, there was a bit of a spat on social media about what "independent" means. I guess the word can mean many things to many people. Here's what it means to me, in this context. It means: someone who is going to act in the party's best interest, to the best of their ability, at all times. Even if that may mean going against the wishes of some Democratic elected official or candidate. It means showing up early and staying late and taking extra time to get the party's work done. It means finishing what you start. It means doing what you say you're going to do. It means setting forth every day with the purpose of doing something that helps build the Howard County Democratic Party.
In that light, I hope that many of the HoCo Forward slate are also "independent". I mean, really, why an argument about this word? Does that mean that "dependent" candidates are OK?
Since this is the season where people are asking me about who to vote for, I thought I would maybe share a little extra information about people who are running for HoCo DCC who I know or have done business with, while of course, reiterating my endorsements of HoCo Forward plus Geckle/Weinstein/Ford/Grabowski. Do with it what you will. It might make you want to support some of these people. Or maybe it won't! Either way is fine. But there's a good chance that a few of the people below get elected.
I do not personally know Alicia Altamirano, Matthew Moylett, Gabe Moreno, or Lewis Saunders. I have met Matt personally and not the others. But I don't know enough about any of them to make an informed opinion. I hope that changes soon.
Jan Oliver is a current member of the HoCoDCC. I have always known her to be candid and incisive in her views on Democratic politics in this county, even taking to task some of our elected officials.
Bill Adams is also currently a member of the HoCoDCC. He has served as the Treasurer of the group and as such has presided over fundraising totals that reinforced my faith in the slate that was elected in 2014.
Rich Corkran has run for State Senate, State Delegate, and is a founding member of the reincarnated Ellicott City/Western Howard Democratic Club. Rich and I haven't seen eye to eye at all times over the years. But he is a good Democrat and his commitment to the party is without question.
Sean Ford is a Young Democrat who has worked for Eric Ebersole and, as memory serves, is also Courtney Watson's campaign manager. He is the type of person who needs to be included among the cadre of Democrats who will step forward to lead in the coming decades.
Josh Friedman. Hoo boy. Josh Friedman is a Democrat. He has served the Columbia Democratic Club with distinction and I believe his values are clearly Democratic. Josh is a person who can say polarizing, controversial things. Personally, I would like to see him work on taking the edge off (did I really just write that?) but at least you know where you stand with Josh. He is unvarnished and unfiltered.
Pravin Ponnuri is also part of the current HoCoDCC. He also ran for the Board of Education in 2016. And that's hard to do as someone currently holding party office. So good for him for standing up. He's also worked hard to connect candidates for local and state office to the Indian-American community. And he's a magician! He makes balloon animals! That's pretty cool.
So I hope that the above helps humanize some of these candidates a bit? The Democratic Central Committee is a thankless volunteer job. And when I was running for it (and winning), there was a perennial candidate named Bushrod Hopkins. Ol' Bushrod was a devotee of Lyndon LaRouche and so always ran for the HoCoDCC as the local mouthpiece of he who felt the Queen controlled the drug trade.
There's not a Bushrod Hopkins in this group of candidates that I'm aware of. Not every one of them will be your flavor of Jello, but that's what happens when you pick 20 people out of over two dozen. Do your best in who you pick. I have brought to you 20 people but if you don't agree, OK. Just pick 20.
Let's be careful out there.
#hocopolitics #hcdcc #mddems #hocodems