First, thank you to you gentlemen who have kept BlueNC running these many years. I have not posted in some time, and I appreciate this forum still being a place where I can express my take on NC politics.
My take is that the leadership of the North Carolina Democratic Party did little to recruit candidates for the 2022 election. A quick count showed that republicans won 14 seats in the state senate and 29 seats in the state house UNOPPOSED. I may be off by 1 or 2 seats as it was indeed a quick count, and I am seeing red at this moment ... in more ways than one. As a comparison I checked 2020 to see if this was "normal". It is most definitely NOT normal. In 2020 democrats fielded candidates in all senate districts and all but 2 house districts. The state party's prime responsibilities are to (#1) recruit candidates and then (#2) support those candidates. As a result the GOP in NC now is one House vote away from having veto proof majorities for the next 2 years.
I saw something similar happen in 2009-2010. In 2009 the NCDP elected a vapid non-entity as state chair. In 2010 Art Pope bought republicans majorities in the legislature; they gerrymandered the state all to hell, and we have been fighting uphill ever since. Leadership failed then and NCDP leadership failed in 2022. This year in New York, Democratic party leadership is taking heat because 4 federal House seats flipped to republicans. As the saying goes "elections have consequences", especially elections where one party is asleep at the wheel.
New, energetic leadership is definitely called for. The next set of NCDP chairs will be elected in 2023; they will be the party's leaders in 2024, and we cannot afford another election with lackadaisical, laissez-faire "leadership".
I wish I had an answer for the problems you’re talking about, but I’m at a loss. After 20 years of contributing and participating, I’m pretty frustrated and discouraged. And I don’t see many who feel differently.
Thanks for the kind words. I don’t know what the future of BlueNC will be, but we’ll find out before too long.
One of the problems with attracting new leadership is the mindnumbing bureaucracy that controls how the party operates. I don’t know of anybody with a strong desire to make things happen who would put up with the kind of nonsense I see again and again.
Back when I was more active politically ...
about 10-15 years ago, I ran head long into that bureaucracy. It felt like an inertia, a force of staleness that prevented true progressive change. I put a lot of time into being a county chair back in those days. I cannot see how a person could take on the job of being a state chair and then do so little. It's not like NC is solidly blue or red. There are elections that can be won in this state but not if we don't have candidates. FFS.
I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?
I used to think BlueNC had a role to play in the marketplace of political ideas, but I've lost the delusion. Operating effectively in that marketplace requires being an insider with a big checkbook. It also requires patience and political nicety ... not my strong suits.
It's hard to get your voice heard ...
... when dark money is buying the loudest megaphones and drowning out everyone else with misinformation and hate speech.
May be impossible.
I don’t know. Feeling beaten.
I agree, wholeheartedly.
If we missed challenging a few seats, because recruited candidates changed their minds, I wouldn't be concerned. But that (doesn't appear to be) what happened. Going back to the old, bad habits of pragmatism and misguided "resource management" I thought we had outgrown.
I've got more brewing, maybe tomorrow night.
I was told once that there
I was told once that there are some districts in our state that are so conservative that anyone who ran for election as a Dem would subsequently be ostracized by the community. And I can see that happening.
Support for candidates comes from the House and Senate Caucuses, rather than directly from the party. And they limit the number of people they support, most likely because of financial resources. They only support candidates they believe can win, and win in certain districts. We are limited from the get-go.
There are many counties and towns in North Carolina where people are ostracized for being gay, lesbian or transgender.
That doesn't stop them from saying "Fuck that noise" and being out and living their lives the way they want to.
You could say the same thing about people who are Jewish, Muslim, or atheist in the same towns.
Sure, they risk being ostracized or much worse. But they do it anyway because it's a fundamental part of who they are.
If fellow Democrats can't at least show a sliver of that kind of perseverance, being true to themselves, and sense of justice, then NC Democratic Party needs to ask why the hell they're asking for support from anyone in a gender, sexual, ethnic, or religious minority.