In the recent mayoralty race, free floating sentiments for women in government and an ill considered thumb on the scale by the Talbot County Democratic Party in a traditionally nonpartisan election resulted in a triumph of style over substance.
The voters have reached a consensus on managed growth. Affordable housing limps along as a chronic issue waiting for someone to step up to subsidize the difference between market prices and some definition of affordable. Forcing the subsidy onto developers has not been successful.
Modest efforts to address the issue around the edges are encouraging and worthwhile. And David Montgomery had some practical observations about what we might consider as a reasonable commute time.
A fundamental issue for the Democratic Party has always been access to health care. With regard to this pressing issue here, the first woman mayor of Easton it supported has nothing to offer.
The issue of physician shortage and the stalled medical center project was meaningfully addressed by one candidate, Al Silverstein. He has the kind of savy leadership prepared to pursue negotiations with the University of Maryland and perhaps Luminis Health on behalf of Easton. He has experience in other jurisdictions in addressing the problem of physician shortages.
What the local Democratic Party can and should do is concentrate its efforts on working with the parties in the four county Mid-Shore legislative district to identify candidates who can challenge the Republican Party control of our state representation. The current situation is a disastrous one.
With a Democratic state administration and overwhelmingly Democratic legislature, our Republican legislators Mautz, Adams and Hutchinson are in no position to meaningfully represent the interests of the Mid-Shore and less effective than Democratic legislators can be in constituent services.
Working to address the fundamental human needs like access to health care, minimum wage, voting rights, criminal justice reform, reproductive and LGBT rights is what legislators do. Mindlessly supporting candidates on the local level because of identity politics or party affiliation betrays and in this case undermined the values our wonderful party stands for.
Letters to Editor
William Keppen says
I am a registered “Independent” voter, a resident of Talbot County for only three years, who decided to sit this election out, because try as I might to understand which candidates would best represent my views/interests in Easton and Talbot County, their messaging failed to make their views and intents clear. I hope those who were elected understand and lead efforts to lead efforts to balance and serve the needs of Talbot County residents. In my view, growth should be directly linked to resources and infrastructure development, but that’s just me.
Jay Corvan says
We have proven time and again unable to legislate
anything local state or national whatsoever becausebof iddntity politics.
With money profit and corruption of public officials it appears representative government is Close to dead. But let’s not panic because representative democracy has been underperforming for quite some time. Why not try direct referendum for a change and get actual results.
You can’t bemoan a majority vote , a real live Wirking consensus is practically impossible these days , so use democracy’s best friend. Use the vote. Make people show up
Instead of chronically complaining, about party nonsense , of which we are very bored and tired , and we all know is dysfunctional , let’s harness the voter electorate instead of the false and misleading leadership we are saddled with , and let’s actually get something done , even if every issue needs s separate referendum , there would be no ambiguity about voter Opinion. Sure it’s more work for everyone but isvitvreslly ? I’ll bet things would move through the agenda faster with less infighting.
And if leadership continues to stall , rewrite the town charter to include a vote of no confidence provision. Don’t wait for politicians to stall out in office.
Barbara Heatly says
Congratulations to Jay Corvan and Holly Wright for correctly pointing out the “lock” that identity politics can hold at the local level. This is not a popularity contest, it is “real life’ with REAL CONSEQUENCES. We should allow them to remind us of the gifts that a true democracy can provide.