Those few of you who read this blog regularly will recall that I’m a registered Democrat, and therefore one of my missions (should I choose to accept it) is voting for members of the Howard County Democratic Central Committee. I normally pass on this, as in the past I’ve had no idea who any of these people are. However since I’ve been reading a number of local blogs focused on politics and have been doing a fair amount of Howard County blogging myself, I thought it was incumbent on me to bone up on the Central Committee candidates, especially if any of them are especially good (or bad) people to have on the committee.

Comparing the current Central Committee members (officers and others) to the 18 candidates listed on the county candidate list and doing some Google searching, it looks like we have the following:

If any of you out there would like to tell me which candidates I should vote for and why, please add a comment below or send me email. Note that I’ll put the most reliance on recommendations from people I know already, including my fellow bloggers and those who’ve commented previously on my blog.

Some other notes:

  • To the Central Committee candidates: I don’t do political endorsements on this blog, so I’ll be keeping to myself whatever decisions I come to regarding which candidates I’ll vote for.
  • To Jonathan Branch, Abby Hendrix, Clarence Lam, and Ethan Moore: Thanks for having an actual online campaign presence (and special props to Clarence Lam for actual campaign videos).
  • To Rich Corkran: Don’t you think it’s time to update that web site?
  • To Bill Adams, Diane Banner, and Jerry Lozupone: You’re invisible to Google, and thus invisible to me.
  • To local Democratic activists: I’m sorry, my work and family situation prevents me from participating actively in local Democratic party events. A blog post every couple of weeks is about as much as I can manage.
  • To the Western Howard County Democratic Club: Your web site is busted; trying to go directly to the endorsements page gives an error (though the results are still displayed on the main page).
  • To the Columbia Democratic Club: You have a web site and a Facebook page, and didn’t see fit to use either of them to list whom you endorsed? (I got my endorsement information from the candidates’ web sites, for those who had one.)
  • To African Americans in Howard County (the group AAIHC, not every Afri—you know what I mean): Do you have any actual online presence? All I ever see of AAIHC is second-hand information from blogs and news stories.

Sarah - 2010-09-12 23:21

Thanks. I know so little about this. The Voters’ Guide didn’t have too much info on this race (understandably as it would take a lot of space). I hadn’t heard about any of these candidates, and I had no idea what the Central Committee did. After I got home from voting, I signed up for the Howard County and Columbia Democratic email lists but my voting criteria was 100% based on who had an online presence. I haven’t heard of many of these organizations who did endorsements– probably because I’m new here– but knowing who some of these organizations endorsed would have changed my votes, or at least added the number of folks I voted for. Alas. Hindsight is 20/20. Better luck next time. Thanks for this, though :)

hecker - 2010-09-13 01:09

Sarah, I’m sorry I didn’t post something like this earlier; I was reminded of this only when I took out my sample ballot to fill it out. I find the relative lack of online information interesting. It’s like you’re expected to vote for Central Committee members only if you show up for in-person Democratic events. But if that’s the case then why allow all Democrats to vote on this? And it’s not as if it’s just the “young guns” like Ethan Moore or Clarence Lam who know how to do online stuff. I mean, Jonathan Branch has a decent looking candidate web site and he’s 54 years old.

Sarah - 2010-09-13 12:28

Ah, but the responsibility isn’t necessarily yours, though I do appreciate this rundown :)

Jena ( - 2010-09-13 18:29

Thank you so much for this info. I have spent days trying to pull together information on each of these candidates. You saved me so much time!

andrew stone ( - 2010-09-14 02:29

Thank you!! I was looking for someone who had posted info on the central committee candidates!!! At least I know who the incumbents are.For the first time I will go vote tomorrow, without being totally ignorant about the democratic central committee candidates.

hecker - 2010-09-14 02:33

Jena and Andrew: As with Sarah, I’m glad you found this useful. Again, I really don’t know why some local Democratic group doesn’t put together a list like this (unless, as I said earlier, there’s a bias toward Democrats who can show up at in-person meetings).

Jonathan K. Branch ( - 2010-10-19 17:35

Just found your blog Mr. Hecker, and I will be following your blog site from now on. Thank you for the insightful views about the HCDCC. Although I didn’t consider myself a “marginal” candidate, I appreciate your observation that the website and Facebook presence may have assisted me in getting the 12th spot. I am very pleased to be a part of this committee, and look forward to serving the Democrats and citizens of Howard County for the next four years.

hecker - 2010-10-20 00:30

Thanks for stopping by and commenting; I’m glad you find the blog worth reading. Incidentally, I didn’t intend the word “marginal” as a value judgment on the relative worth of HCDCC candidates; I just meant candidates that were close to the line in terms of being elected or not.

Jonathan K Branch - 2010-10-20 01:01

Understood, and I do appreciate and realize that I was “close to the line”.