Re-joining the Central Committee

Oakland Cemetery, Big Grove Township, Johnson County, Iowa. Dec. 17, 2016

After an absence since 2010, I re-joined the Johnson County Democrats Central Committee on Thursday, April 6.

My neighbor and long-time Central Committee member Bob Huber moved out of Big Grove Precinct. That left us with zero representation so I stepped up to attend the tedious meetings and do the grunt work of engaging in local politics.

After being voted in, I was asked to say a few words about myself. This is kind of backwards, as the speaking should more properly be done before the vote. I talked about my time as a township trustee and how things were pretty quiet at the cemetery the trustees manage.

Some things haven’t changed about the Johnson County Democrats. In typical style, the slate of delegates to the Second District Central Committee could not be filled at the meeting. That’s another tedious, albeit important political task that needs doing.

My first impression is members of this central committee operate in a political bubble. I’ve not gotten beyond first impressions. With time, I will. If it is a bubble I will decipher and endeavor to pop it. People I met seemed like good people even if protected from the reality of Iowa politics by the liberal slant of the only county to vote for Jack Hatch as governor in 2014.

Our precinct went strongly for Hillary Clinton at the 2016 caucus and friends from that campaign also attended the meeting. A self-described representative of the Bernie movement announced an event. This represents first impressions but there continues to be a party divide between people who supported Sanders’ failed effort to win the Democratic nomination for president and/or Clinton’s failed effort to win the presidency. My advice, if anyone is listening, is it’s time to move on.

Two candidates for governor spoke at the meeting, Johnson County Supervisor Mike Carberry and Davenport Alderman Mike Matson. It is way too early to pick sides in the gubernatorial field. On the plus side, hearing these brief statements is part of attending central committee meetings.

We’ll see how it goes. Here are some tweets I made after the experience. Twitter is a much better medium for political reporting.

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