Friday, January 02, 2004

Speaker of the House Denny Hastert running for precinct committeeman -- we've got to do this too.

Steve Neal found a great tidbit in today's column in the Sun-Times here -- Speaker of the House Denny Hastert is running for precinct committeeman.

We progressives have *got* to do this. We have just got to start running for local party positions.

In Chicago, the local party position is ward committeeman (and it is kind of B.S. that there aren't precinct committeeman positions in Chicago, as that would make it easier to build local party organizations that actually reflect the neighborhoods, instead of shipping in precinct captains from other parts of the city, as often happens with shipping in Southwest Side people to work North Side lakefront precincts).

I was happy to support John Fritchey's campaign for ward committeeman of the 32rd ward which includes parts of Bucktown and Wicker Park. But he cut some deal with Alderman Ted Matlak, so both Fritchey and Matlak withdrew their petitions for ward committeeman, leaving the incumbent, Terry Gabinski, the only candidate on the ballot this March for ward committeeman. I think John wanted to ensure that Matlak didn't become both the committeeman and the alderman, so in that sense, we can call it progress. But I would have liked to ask people to vote for John.

Anyway, we should wage write-in campaigns in these uncontested races for ward committeeman. If Speaker Hastert thinks it is worth his time, then it *must* be a smart thing to do.

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