February 15, 2008
that the Democratic Primary
is Over, Where do we go from here?
Now that the vote
totals are coming in from the vote on Tuesday, February 12 (with a
total to date for me of just under 10,000 votes, with percentage of
9.3% of the vote), I am giving some thought as to possible next steps.
I think it is of utmost importance to keep the pressure on our
representative, Chris Van Hollen, on certain issues, especially the
issue of ending Congressional funding for the war and occupation of Iraq,
and bringing the troops home NOW. As I see it, I have three (or
perhaps 4) options. Let me lay them out for you. If you
have any thoughts about this, I welcome your input, as I think all of
this through. This will not be an internet poll. But I do
invite you to just send me an e-mail, if you wish to share your
thoughts with me on where we should go from here.
- I could just
congratulate Mr. Van Hollen on his victory, and keep urging him from
the sidelines to take a stronger leadership position on ending
Congressional funding for the war, and bringing our troops home.
- I could file to be
an official write-in candidate in the General Election. This is
actually a very easy thing to do, in terms of procedure. There is no
filing fee. It would give me a platform from which to continue to
debate the issues with Mr. Van Hollen.
- I could support
the candidacy of Gordon Clark, the Green Party candidate for the 8th
Congressional District. I consider Gordon to be a friend, and I
like what I have seen of his campaign so far.
- O.K., I said there
would be three options, but maybe there really is a fourth.
Write-ins seldom win, so my running as a write-in could well amount to
little more than giving me a platform on which to continue to talk
about the issues. From that platform, I could continue to
advocate for peace and social justice, and provide some gentle and
friendly competition to Gordon Clark, as well as Chris Van Hollen. If
Gordon develops a strong campaign on the issues that he and I both
support, I could then shift to supporting his candidacy. For that
matter, if Chris Van Hollen were to emerge from his role as timid
follower and assume new leadership in getting us out of Iraq,
I could shift my support to him, at that point. Option 4 actually
gives me some flexibility to address any change in Van Hollen’s
positions that might emerge in the course of the campaign.
am leaning toward Option 4, but I invite your input. Send me an
e-mail, if you have any thoughts on this.
Finally, I want to
emphasize that although election calendars and
ballot access rules do inject a certain level of competition into the
process among activists with different party affiliations, ultimately
we need to be thinking about working together—all of us voters for
peace—be we Democrats, Republicans, Greens, Libertarians, or
independents. We need to develop some new strategies to use the
electoral process to support peace candidates—regardless of party