Who are these 175 Democrats and which opposing camps do they fall into?
First, let’s take a look at where these 175 come from and see if we can narrow it down further:
- Statewide and federal elected officials;
- County party committee leaders;
- The party executive board members.
Who the hell are these people?
Alright, three groups…maybe we can cram about 58.3 Democrats into each, just to make it easy. Let’s get started.
Montana Statewide and Federal Democrats
- Governor Steve Bullock
- Senator Jon Tester
- Senator John Walsh (?)
- Secretary of State Linda McCulloch;
- State Auditor Monica Lindeen
- State Superintendent of Public Instruction Denise Juneau
- Montana Commissioner of Labor and Industry Pam Bucy
- Clerk of the Supreme Court Ed Smith;
- Candidate John Lewis.
Those are the main Democrats in the state holding key offices. You’ll notice that there’s a chance Walsh can vote, and I think he should be given one, if he wants it.
I’d also expect John Lewis has some say since the Democratic Party is supporting him 100%, as they should be. There’s a good chance he’ll be representing us in the House next year, and his chances just got better today.
County Party Leaders
I could keep rattling names off here…even adding in every person in the legislature. That gets us up to 150 pretty fast.
You can bet most of these Montana County Commission Chairs and Vice Chairs will be voting.
How many people were at the convention in June in Butte? I don’t know, but this group here will make up the bulk of the voting members.
Here we’re getting into regional proclivities and also just people being pissed off – being pissed at not having their voice heard the first time our Senator was chosen being chief amongst them.
This is where that first group of people will have some pull. Tester knows the Hi Line so should be able to marshal those forces to his cause. Bullock has the capital and that group there, although how well under his thumb I’m not sure.
This is where you’ll see something interesting – either the nominating convention being brought forward or pushed as far to August 20 as possible. Both could signal rifts, although in which direction is too much for my experience to speculate upon.
Party Executive Board
- Montana College Democrats
- Montana Democratic Party Public School Educators (MDPPSE)
- Big Sky Democrats
- Montana Democratic Women's Alliance
- Montana Hunters' and Outdoor Roundtable
- Montana Indian Democrats Council
- Montana County Chairs' Association
I’m not really sure who these folks are, I just got the list off the Montana Democrats site. I’ll bet that some of the top-brass in those outfits will have a say in what happens next week, however, so be watching.
I’m a fan of the guy myself, never met him, but would sure like to vote for him this fall. I’d also like to vote for him in 2016, but I’m not sure I’ll get that chance. See, I’m not sure Schweitzer can make it through the national primaries. That’s why I think having him get into this race would be such a good thing.
I know we’d win, but maybe he’d lose. I think he’s kind of like a free spirit that needs to soar, and Washington would cage him up pretty darn quick…and for six years.
I’m not sure he could take that, or resist the urge to jump into the 2016 race from the Senate.
It’s all speculation, but you’ll notice I didn’t put him on my list of long shots yesterday. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.
John Walsh’s Remaining Months
- Draft legislation dealing with PTSD-issues affecting Montana. Have co-sponsors and –signers that carry it through for you. It might be in someone else’s name, but if you play your cards right the press back home will know who did it.
- Continue to beat the drum against reengagement in Iraq. Convince people in no uncertain terms the hell it’s like to go over there and make them realize we can’t spend anymore time over there.
- Work with Senator Tester to get our open lands and forest issues settled through the bills that are already there but can’t seem to find support.
- Do all you can to ensure the person running on the Democratic ticket gets elected to succeed you. Being in the Senate is still quite the mouthpiece, and you can use it to good effect, and in many ways.
I sure hope the Democrats can get together soon and figure out where this nominating convention is and get their candidate chosen quickly.
We can’t have more runaway speculation in the press and on the blogs. We need to have someone we can get behind, someone that can help us direct our restless energies against Daines.
Our Senate seat can still be Democratic come February.