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Wednesday, March 15, 2006

DECs Should Not Be Involved in Primaries

I've heard a great deal about this issue that is coming to light lately. Many of us saw what happened in Ohio, as Paul Hackett was forced out of the Senate race there. In other Democratic primaries throughout the nation, national Democratic campaign organs, from the DCCC and the DSCC, have actively taken sides in primaries and have forced candidates out of races. I personally don't believe these bodies don't have the authority to do this, but then again, I don't know the rules at the national level.

What has frustrated me recently is to hear that local Democratic parties have become complicit in all of this, and sometimes participating in this themselves.

In Florida, no DEC or DEC member should take active sides in primary. Period. I believe this is in the state bylaws, but I haven't confirmed to be sure.

All DECs in Florida, including the larger and better organized DECs, have no place in the affairs of primaries. It would be gauling for me to see DEC leaders try to play favorites in a primary when they barely are getting by in terms of getting their actual jobs done. As DECs are struggling for political RELEVANCE in the state, the last thing they need to be doing is sticking their heads in primary business.

Every Democrat who agrees to run for office should be given a fair chance and a fair shot - and should never be subject to useless and unproductive political games - especially played by people who have no business at all playing it.

If a Democrat looks like a losing candidate, its up to their primary challenger to finish them off. If they're that bad, and the other guy can't defeat them, then chances are they didn't stand much of a chance against the Republican opponent either.

Democrats will make the right decision if given the chance.

Finally, to all DEC leaders and officials in Florida and across the US who feel its their business to meddle in primaries: stop playing political kingmaker - and get back to doing your real job.


Mike said...

Read the whole piece about how a Republican county party turned themselves around, but this is the part that's relevant:

"The principle of endorsing incumbents seeking re- election is important. Republicans elected to local office are far more interested in building a successful Republican Party when they recognize the Party (1) will support them, and (2) provides real, tangible benefits for those candidates it endorses. In addition, a general posture of re-electing Republican incumbents promotes unity, while encouraging would-be challengers instead to seek an office held by a non-Republican, or one with no incumbent running. This maximizes the Party’s ability to increase the total number of offices it holds in the county."

Ray Seaman said...

Thanks Mike.

Excellent point. Not only will a strong county party be able to garner support from existing elected Democrats (who in the past wouldn't come near us with a 6 foot pole), but also stop Democrats from switching to the Republican Party for a chance to get elected.

Also, yes, we need to spread out our candidates and maximize the chances for victory.