SCDP – NEEDS OVERHAUL

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Its capacity for defeat remains habitual.

It has lost again with depleting margins and has retained its proprietary sliver of the Statewide Vote…Register 46 notwithstanding.

On its website, under Meet the Chair, is an encomium of a character that is reputed to have done singular miracles everywhere but in South Carolina… with a Gubernatorial campaign loss that is lauded as “falling just 58,000 votes short of sending Vincent to the Governor’s Mansion in Columbia”…in no small measure NO victory in this small State – even if its prefaced by ‘just’.

Massaging loss into praise, for an attempt valiant, has been the consolatory butt -slapping equivalent generously doled out by politicians, whose only new add- on to the dusted off recycled blue print was another line of sloganeering-  ‘Turn SC blue in 22’–  then gave it just as much effort as the ditty took to sling together.

Forgive us, if our orientation remains entrenched in the purpose of the Political Party being the representative for an electorate with similar political views and a desire to hold as many posts as possible in government. That, to us, says there is, inherently, a symbiosis in Party and Electorate because our roles are mutually beneficial to the existence of each other.

We’ve long wondered at the SCDP Rules under State Party Organization and remain curious, like many others, on how candidates are fielded for office – beyond personal desire – the recycling of executive employees and the high profile positions of personnel with household last names.

But that’s for a whole other discussion.

We’ve met the Chair per the website’s insistence and are still in a stage of recoil at his lack of political graces.

Being deplorably cantankerous may be a winning trait for a low level social media troll but to have it unleashed on party supporters, by an elected official who emblazons his contempt with the Party Logo, a symbol of our ideological pride, is defacement of branding & damage to social reputation. That this goes unchecked by other senior members suggests another layer of disregard for what should be functional oversight.

As members who are not in the ranks of Administration, we expect it to exercise the fiduciary responsibility our support should garnish and give us the best -practices product our votes should guarantee.

We’re curious, too, about what the functions of the Executive Director and Chair are and will take this opportunity to ask, again, what are they, given the Party’s track record of running merely as a nominal contender with no remedial tactics or improved strategy from any previous failed cycle.

Not to pin too fine a point on it but it is exponentially frustrating to visit a social media platform, used by the Party Chair, for pertinent updates and find some sophomoric mockery of rivals by this representative whose actions are a reflection of who we are as a collective. Most of us do not want to be spoken for in this way and we expect his overseers to be competent keepers of our Party’s image and by extension, ours.

It’ll be hypocritical not to say that the Party takes us for granted. Most of us come equipped with good conscience, an inner core that activates our civic interests and, thus, steers us to political participation. It’s that conscience that will never allow us to, even, contemplate the other Party, let alone defect to it.

But our loyalty is relegated to expectation so Party officers respond to us as though courtesy is optional. 

The style of Party management creates its own problems. It looks for enemies where there are none. Moreover, it chooses the wrong ones.

It is time to revise, were thinking, how this Party treats its back bone, we, the ordinary members, without whom it will have no purpose. We’re not asking to be privy to closely held decision making methods but we deserve a say in how long an ineffective leader should represent our voting interests. And, this has seeped in to County Parties where Face Book discussions quickly devolve into rancor, when the herd mentality is challenged…

This loss will now thrust us into the spin cycle where we’ll be bombarded with one of the patented analyses…anyone from the catalogue amassed over the years of failure, will do. The fact that the Senate Opponent was unchallenged enough to spend more time campaigning for his peers around the country than he did for himself, here, in South Carolina, won’t make the cut…not with the Party’s occular impairment.

Who wants to be part of an organization with a preference for incestuous feuding over an acceptance of ideas… from us, lesser members?

These election postmortems have become a matter of course… never with the forensic pathology of a political examiner diligently looking for the cause of death. Again, we’ll watch them measure defeat with a shortened yardstick… the one with the ‘barely lost’ metric.

And why not? The appearance of due diligence always works.

Common sentiment is that a vote for a 3rd party is a waste but what’s the difference when voting for the traditional SCDP produces the same result? As we said, the need for an overhaul is critical to the Party’s retaining an appeal that transcends people participating out of mere duty or habit.

With more loss than victories in elections at every level in South Carolina –  except for the hallowed District Six where the incumbent is doing it for the 16th time/ 32 years – there isn’t a right answer to the operations blue print that is reused every election cycle, to its peril, but a range of them.

We’re submitting that the ideas coming from Executive Leadership are merely to satisfy tradition –  ‘turn SC Blue in ‘22 …catchy but the kind of rhyme you’d see on a cork board in a classroom with the teacher’s signature under it…particularly since the Party hasn’t developed the infrastructure for the endeavorEVER.

Add the Cunningham campaign manifesto tax cuts- which must have slipped past the Party’s verification team because it’s 40% proposed cut is thought to be a budgeting faux pas , is flatly incomprehensible.

The point? No four sided coordination to establish the Party’s platform which depends on every plank for efficacy and victory!

There’s a lot that needs to be done here to make the Party competitive. We’ve allowed a cloistered crew to claim that they’re doing the best they could in leadership. Consistent failure proves that wrong.

Our base is too narrow and so is our vision.

Leadership, in caustic admission, confines help to “volunteering to make phone calls, canvass, or serve as poll watchers”…not once thinking that their ineptitude is the proximate problem. And, because ‘bare minimum’ has become the SCDP currency for politicking, we, the voters, are sold a political bill of goods every cycle by those who feign maximum effort then point to historic trends when failure is their result.

And, if we don’t demand better, we’ll get the same players, playing the same game, every cycle because it appears we don’t know better. It’s up to us now to show that we’re not politically illiterate, swayed by anyone’s last name or partial to anyone claiming expertise, when the result is consistent failure. As much as we, voters, need a Party, we have the upper hand. We can hold our noses and vote for another faction or simply not vote.

The point here is that we need to be respected as the critical component of the SCDP, that we are. The practice of an insufferable overseer with an extended bad day and a twitter finger that does more work at diminishing our platform than it does at making us a better Party, should be condemned and openly.

And while we’re doing that, we should leverage our voting mandate to get more of a participatory role in the strategies and tactics we’re told are being engaged in, on our behalf. Register 46, for example, that should have brought in new voters seems not to have done so. Can they tell us how much of a success it was, in numbers, per district?

Running the Party like a private employer of us, the voters, complete with an irate foreman, is not tenable. We are a part of this group because we share a common political goal not because we are looking to be led. Volunteering is neither a reserved gratuity nor a list of duties for the foreman to cite as some weapon of beration. The deal is, your due diligence for our support at the polls, primarily.

The ’22 election cycle has fizzled to an end.…

When the Party stops pretending that it’s structured to be competitive at State level and reaches for assistance past the team that delivers failure faithfully, it may, again, become a place for those of us who want to win.

2 COMMENTS

  1. I can’t even tell you how much I agree with this article. The party has lost its way assuming it ever had found it. I’ve come to believe that the point of the state party is not to win but to raise enough money to keep paying the people in charge…to keep losing.

    I resigned as chair of the Hispanic Caucus in protest of Joe Cunningham. I’m tired of candidates and leadership who rank minority groups’ value by the percentage of votes they bring to the table. I’m tired of candidates who try harder to win over votes from Republicans than they do their own party. I’m tired of leadership who allow candidates to determine the party platform rather than the party platform determining who can be a candidate. I’m tired of party leadership who, instead of hearing and acknowledging the concerns and complaints of its members prefers to mock them on social media.

    I’m exhausted at the progressively worse losses every single election. I gave up trying to explain to the Hispanic community why they should vote for a man who, as a congressman voted against them getting COVID benefits because they aren’t citizens when they were the ones putting their lives on the line while the rest of us were hiding at home. I refuse to support a man who had no interest in the Hispanic community because they only represent 2% of the vote.

    If we have to become more like Republicans to win then we are not winning – we are just still losing and losing ourselves and our dignity in the process. I’m tired of hearing about what amounts to strategic surrender. If we are going to lose either way then let’s lose standing up for who we are and what we believe in.

    Until this party begins standing for what we claim to stand for then I will not associate myself, my name or my affiliation with it. I will be an independent until further notice. I absolutely refuse to promote a party in my community that cannot value my community. #CountMeOut

    • Thanks for your response. The points you make are both profound and appalling.
      There’s an entire community of us disgusted with Administration as usual. We plan to meet regularly or at least conference or zoom call to think of alternatives to this Party that disserves us as a mmater of course.
      Let’s stay in touch. EMAIL: bravbar@yahoo.com TWITTER @bravbar.

      Do share generously and thanks for participating.

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