The campaign against Confederate statues rages on in Maryland, this time out west at a historic Civil War battlefield.
Tag: john delaney
In John Delaney’s words: “The American people are far greater than the sum of our political parties. It is time for us to rise above our broken politics and renew the spirit that enabled us to achieve the seemingly impossible. This is why I am running for the Democratic nomination for president of the United States.”
If it were a group of taciturn mercenaries hired to protect a Wild West border town from a gang of plundering bandits, then it would be pretty cool for Gov. Larry Hogan to be one of its founding members. Unfortunately, “The Silent Nine” is actually a name given by a group of Democratic governors for their nine Republican counterparts who have yet to officially state whether they will be supporting Donald Trump, now that he is the party’s presumptive presidential nominee.
Last year, he was gerrymandered out of Maryland’s sixth district by his own party in an attempt to exclude him from running for Congress there. Now, after defeating party favorite Rob Garagiola in the primary, John Delaney has been named to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s “Red to Blue” program, which zeroes in on currently Republican congressional districts that have a good chance of turning Democrat. Delaney is one of 35 “new, competitive candidates” who will be given “financial, communications, grassroots, and strategic support” by the DCCC.
Though Delaney is going up against 10-term incumbent Roscoe Bartlett, the race is really his to lose, as the district has been redrawn specifically to disenfranchise Republican voters. If Bartlett somehow manages to win, it’ll really say more about Maryland Dems’ incompetence in rigging elections than anything else. If Delaney wins, Maryland’s representation in Congress won’t so much go from “red to blue” as “blue to navy blue.”
This is my favorite moment in partisan politics: right after the primary when two politicians, who just yesterday we’re warning voters of the doomsday scenario that would be brought about by the other’s nomination, backpedal as quickly and completely as they can to present a unified front in the general election. And in the case of the Democratic primary in Maryland’s sixth Congressional district, it’s particularly satisfying.
The nominee, John Delaney, was gerrymandered out of the district by the party establishment in order to clear a path to the nomination for Rob Garagiola (the official choice to unseat 10-term Republican U.S. Rep. Roscoe Bartlett), but ran anyway. And his status as literally “an outsider” propelled him to a decisive victory (well, that and outspending Garagiola three to one). By now, most of the top party members have scraped off their Garagiola bumper stickers and come out in full support of insurgent Delaney as he challenges Bartlett to represent the New, Improved Sixth District — now with more registered Democrats!
I know I harp on gerrymandering alot in my posts here, but that’s only because it is one of the most overt and defiant displays of political corruption available — I can’t understand how our lawmakers can claim to be representing the people as they are blatantly manipulating the system to benefit their party. And with the sixth district, it couldn’t be more offensive if Dems redrew it in the shape of the middle finger, what with the obvious dilution of Maryland’s already embattled conservative voters, and the wonky border that zig and zag to avoid potential candidates’ homes, in the hopes they wouldn’t run.
Don’t get me wrong, more Republicans in the House of Representatives is not something that makes me feel particularly safe, but corruption is corruption.
Late last year, Maryland’s already wonky Congressional district map was made positively psychedelic when it was redrawn to choke out one of the two Republicans in Maryland’s portion of the House of Representatives. But according to the Washington Post, not only was the gerrymandered sixth district intended to give a boost to the absolutely not-in-need-of-a-boost Democratic party, it was actually intended to favor one particular Democrat for the previously Republican seat.
Proving that gerrymandering is still more of an art than a science — and that we don’t exactly appoint our representatives — state Senate Majority Leader Robert J. Garagiola will not simply wake up one day to find himself in the House of Representatives. He will have to face a real contest after all, and from a fellow Democrat, John Delaney, whose Montgomery County home was deliberately excluded from the new sixth district. Apparently, there is no law requiring candidates to actually live in the district they aim to represent, so Delaney is running anyway, and the race for the Democratic nomination is wide open.
Now, I don’t really have a dog in the fight, but I get some small amount of satisfaction from political gamesmanship not quite panning out. I think if I lived in the sixth district, I wouldn’t vote for either Democratic frontrunner; I would try to write in a vote for no more gerrymandering.