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A Steele Democrat Looks Back

The ugly, last-ditch efforts by Republicans Bob Ehrlich and Michael Steele to win over black voters in Prince George's County were "over the top," "foolish," "counterproductive," and "an unnecessary attempt to confuse voters," says one of the five prominent black Democrats who switched sides to endorse Steele in the final weeks of the campaign for U.S. Senate.

But David Harrington, a Democrat on the Prince George's County Council who broke with his party to endorse Republican Steele in his losing bid for the Senate that Ben Cardin will now assume, says he has no regrets about crossing party lines.

Harrington tells me he was angry when he saw the flyer that sought to trick black voters into thinking that Kweisi Mfume and County Executive Jack Johnson had endorsed Ehrlich and Steele.

But Harrington says the dirty trick does not negate his rationale for stepping out to embrace Steele. "My goal was in trying to raise issues and get attention for Prince George's County, to get parity with other jurisdictions. We should get our share of the resource pie when it comes to hospitals, schools and government jobs."

Harrington readily concedes that he and the other Democrats who endorsed Steele "are the subject of conversations in Prince George's County," but he contends that he's not finished in politics or even scratched from the list of politicians who might seek higher office in the county:

"If Marion Barry can survive his episode and win landslide elections, we can survive an endorsement to raise some issues," Harrington says.

The council member does grant that this week's vote means a long stay in the desert for Maryland Republicans, whose notion that they could win statewide if only they could grab a third of the vote in Prince George's proved to be a chimera.

Is Harrington fooling himself? Is he really toast in an increasingly Democratic state? His one hope is that the county council can now assert itself as a more powerful player in its relationship with Jack Johnson--something that voters made easier Tuesday by approving charter amendments restricting the county executive's authority.

Still, even with those changes, Harrington and the other Steele Democrats have some explaining to do, and the Dems who control the pursestrings in Annapolis are going to have long memories on this one.

COMING UP at 12:30 this afternoon: The results of Tuesday's You Be The Pundit Election Day Prediction Contest. Come on back and see how you did.

By Marc Fisher |  November 9, 2006; 7:56 AM ET
Previous: Election Day Shenanigans | Next: You Be the Pundit Contest Results

Comments

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Marc: All I can say is that Prince George's is damned lucky Mr. Brown, one of their own, is now Lieutenant Governor. Otherwise, after that fiasco of an endorsement of Steele, followed by the incredibly stupid pamphleteering by the Republican Party, no one in Prince George's would be getting his phone calls returned by Martin O'Malley for the next four years.

As the old joke says: "What do you get when you cross a wild boar with an Irishman?"

Answer: "A pig that can hold a grudge."

Posted by: Jack | November 9, 2006 8:37 AM

Those Democrats who crossed party lines to endorse Steele will realize that we (Prince Georgians) do have a long memory. None of them can get my vote for dog catcher. I wrote my Councilwoman, Camille Exum, I let her know that I thought she was endorsing Steele for the wrong reasons. I asked her pointedly, would she endorse a White Republican from Prince George's County? I did not get a response but at least she knows that her and the rest of the Steele endorsers were smart enough to see through the rouge.

Posted by: Harry | November 9, 2006 9:02 AM

We are building our house in PG County and selling it and getting the h*** out. What a mistake it was to have any idea that there was a vision in the county to move forward. We are moving to NoVa as soon as we get rid of that house. I am shocked by the arrogance of these people on the County Council - I won't even stick around to vote them out - they don't deserve the taxes on our middle 6-figure income.
The county will never change with these attitudes on the county council.
If they think they won't be held accountable for their shenanigans, they have a surprise coming around the next time they are up for election - people WILL remember, especially after the nasty tactics that Ehrlich and Steele used - who would imagine that one their own would give them so little credit. What an insult.

Posted by: star11 | November 9, 2006 9:06 AM

As a resident of Montgomery County, I can sympathize with PG's complaint As a yellow dog Democrat, I feel that whatever happens to the "Turncoat Five" will be well deserved. The PG and Montgomery state delegations must work together to jointly receive more state aid for our increasingly urbanzed populations. This has not been the case in the past but must be so in the future.

Posted by: A Hardwick | November 9, 2006 9:12 AM

It is amazing that these 5 council members were dumb enough to fall for the Steele line while the people --particularly PG county African Americans -- were not so stupid. Could thye be more out of touch with their constituency? Do the honorable thing and resign or enter rehab for a bad case of terminal stupidity.

Posted by: jmsbh | November 9, 2006 9:18 AM

So many shifts...

First, this group says that the endorsement "was less about Michael Steele and more about the Democratic Party taking us for granted."

And now it's about getting parity with other jurisdictions and PG's piece of the pie?

This was a temper tantrum. PG Dem leaders won't get attention from state and national party leaders by endorsing Steele. They'll get scorn. This little fit probably hurt PG County more than it helped.

I'm sick of these clowns. It's time to throw these bums out.

Posted by: Flavobean | November 9, 2006 9:24 AM

Of course our people ar free to say wha twe want them to say. "Still, even with those changes, Harrington and the other Steele Democrats have some explaining to do, and the Dems who control the pursestrings in Annapolis are going to have long memories on this one."

Another place I do not agree with Fisher.

If a block of voters votes with the same party all the time it will take them for granted and the other party will never do anything for them.

Posted by: Gary Masters | November 9, 2006 9:28 AM

What's up with Harrington's mention of Marion Barry's name and Barry's "episode". He sounded as if it's perfectly ok to do wrong because there's a good chance that you can bounce back. Does Steele and his cohorts think that people will forget what happened? They people of Maryland aren't stupid or naive.

Posted by: sm | November 9, 2006 9:34 AM

I look forward to the day that the WaPo can write an article about Prince Georges County without referencing the skin color of the majority population. Unless the Newspaper wants to start calling ALL jurisdiction by their majority race. Who here knows who the 3 white democratic council members endorsed, or the lone hispanic council member or how about the white state senators that represent the county? [cricket noise, cricket noise]. Why are their endorsements not mentioned?

Back in the 80's, did the WaPo call PG "predominantly white Prince Georges?"

Enough with the labels.

Posted by: white or black | November 9, 2006 9:38 AM

I'm a Montgomery county resident who watched the PG county/Steele courtship very closely since many of my family and friends live in PG. Harrington and the other black PG Dems that endorsed Steele played right into the hands of the dirty tricks Republicans with the false voter guides. It makes them look foolish that they would endorse a Black candidate that would resort to exploiting homeless black men to handout misleading election information to black voters. And they accuse the Democratic party of not treating them right? Given our history with fighting for the right to vote in the 1960s and voting mishaps in the black community in the last 3 national elections, the Republican party has a long way to go in terms of making inroads with black voters, particularly when they use these tactics. I don't feel sorry for Harrington and the other PG Dems. They are self-serving politicians that will have to deal with the consequences of their politically expedient decision to back Steele. I hope their PG county consitutents hold them accountable-my family certainly will!

Posted by: Anonymous | November 9, 2006 10:07 AM

I'm a Montgomery county resident who watched the PG county/Steele courtship very closely since many of my family and friends live in PG. Harrington and the other black PG Dems that endorsed Steele played right into the hands of the dirty tricks Republicans with the false voter guides. It makes them look foolish that they would endorse a Black candidate that would resort to exploiting homeless black men to handout misleading election information to black voters. And they accuse the Democratic party of not treating them right? Given our history with fighting for the right to vote in the 1960s and voting mishaps in the black community in the last 3 national elections, the Republican party has a long way to go in terms of making inroads with black voters, particularly when they use these tactics. I don't feel sorry for Harrington and the other PG Dems. They are self-serving politicians that will have to deal with the consequences of their politically expedient decision to back Steele. I hope their PG county consitutents hold them accountable-my family certainly will!

Posted by: Anonymous | November 9, 2006 10:08 AM

I live in DC, not Maryland, and I am not registered with any party, so I am just an observer. However, if I lived in PG, and was a Democrat, I would not, in the futue, vote for any of those PG councilmembers who publicly crossed over. In fact I'd ask them to officially crossover and become Republicans. I'm Black and the thing that bothers me about this, even though I don't live in PG , was it NEVER was about positions that Cardin took, in fact he probably was 90.9% in agreement on political positions with those in PG County. It was all about Cardin's skin color, and that of Michael Steele, even though Steele, and certainly his party are no where near as in sync with Black voters in gereral and PG voters in particular. Had the Democratic White councilmembers publicly crossed party lines to vote for a White candidate, based on race, which no matter how they want to spin it now, is why the Black PG councilmembers supported Steele, those same Black PG Councilmembers would have tarred and feathered those deserters. At the end of the day, again as an outsider, it appears they all took a sip of the Wayne Curry Kool-Aid, a guy who has always been flirting to be a Republican anyway, and let him convince them Steele had a chance to win. You would think elected politicans would have some politican savvy, and so how they thought Steele as a US SENATOR, would be able to help on COUNTY issues is beyond me. Its going to be really interesting to see how this plays out the next two years as both the Maryland legislature and constituents who voted for Cardin in 2-1 margins, could be very vindictive over what they did.

Posted by: Christopher | November 9, 2006 10:08 AM

The five should be stripped of their public offices and their pensions. Endorsement of the racist GOP is unforgivable.

Posted by: PG Voter | November 9, 2006 10:20 AM

Christopher:
Your analysis was perfect. You should report for the Post. Seriously. What you described is exactly the logic behind their decisions. These "crossovers" were simply hoping to ride unlikely coat-tails. It was a long-shot gamble that might have had big payoffs for their resepctive political careers. However, they misread their own constituents' lack of gullibility, so their bet didn't work. In the end, though, they risked nothing. They're all serving in their 2nd term as council members (we have 2-term limits in PG). It's not like they can face voter wrath again. And none of them are serious contenders for County Executive.

Posted by: To Christopher: | November 9, 2006 10:24 AM

They're toast.

Posted by: PG | November 9, 2006 10:46 AM

I just wonder what campaign Steele might use if he decides to run for an office again. He bashed both parties in his ads and spoke of how he was "going to change Washington". Yet, he played right into the dirty politics that is typical of Washington. But we didn't notice that, did we?

Posted by: We're Not Stupid | November 9, 2006 11:15 AM

Vote the racist turncoats out!

Posted by: Betty | November 9, 2006 11:19 AM

Am I the only one on this msg board that saw the "We R Not SLAVES to the Democrats" signs peppered along the roads in Mitchellville/Bowie on election day. That got my bloid boiling - is this their backhanded way of calling us slaves. I had previously written my council person in the "Turncoat 5" to let him know that he had lost my support and I went as far as to write my own name in as a write-in candidate against him during Tuesday's election.

Posted by: Keisha | November 9, 2006 11:21 AM

Why did the PG County 5 insist that the Dems were not putting any African Americans at the top of the ticket, when the Dem nominee (now incumbent! yay!) for Lt. Gov. was African American?

Isn't the Lt. Gov position also a potential springboard to the Governorship? So why the seeming disrespect from the crossovers?

Posted by: AA Co | November 9, 2006 11:34 AM

The "We R Not SLAVES to the Democrats" signs were all over St. Barnabas and Silver Hill Rd as I went to work Tuesday morning in Suitland. I was absolutely livid to see those signs in 2006. Adios Steele and Erhlich.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 9, 2006 11:42 AM

I'm surprised that Rufus hasn't chimed in on this. He claims to be a PG Democrat, yet 95% of his posts insult Democrats. You'd think he be on here defending these clowns.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | November 9, 2006 12:04 PM

The GOP and Steele greatly underestimated the people of Prince Georges County. Do they really think that someone would entirely ignore the issues and vote for someone simply because of his race? What decade are we in here? The dirty tricks (the slave signs, the misleading literature passed out by homeless guys from Philly) failed because the basic assumption behind them is that the voters are stupid.

I couldn't believe the "Turncoat 5" endorsed Steele. No, wait, yes I could. Wayne Curry has long been out of step with the citizens of the county. Remember when he was advocating breaking up the park land along the Patuxent for "executive housing development"? Those among the "Turncoat 5" who are still in office have dug themselves a deep, deep hole.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 9, 2006 12:06 PM

I lived in PG county, graduated from Bowie HS and went to the U. of MD, so I have a history of not only watching, but voting, for fairness, advancement and true representation for all citizens - including African American candidates. Mr. Steele was Lt. Gov. for 4 years. The last minute endorsement by Wayne and his gang was so transparent that I was thrilled to see that about 70% of African American voters in Prince George's county didn't fall for it. It's the issues far more than the color of the candidate. Get it? Now go away.

Posted by: Craig | November 9, 2006 12:26 PM

I live in Montgomery County, and wasn't aware of the "We R Not SLAVES to Democrats" signs. That was one final ridiculous twist to the election. Less than a month ago Steele threw a tantrum when Steny Hoyer referred to him as a "slavish" follower of the Bush administration and then the GOP puts that crap up? The flyers also backfired as they got Kweisi Mfume back actively involved in the campaign, recording robocall phone messages emphasizing that he supported Cardin.

In any event, African American voters are smarter than many gave them credit for, voting largely on party and issues, not race or personality. (And I'm white, if that matters.) The only positive thing I can think about the Prince Georges' 6 (including Wayne Curry) is that their action should keep Democrats cognizant of the need to actively respond to their African American base.

Posted by: MHK919 | November 9, 2006 12:29 PM

The "Turncoat 5" are lucky we do have term limits in Prince George's but I do think one of them will run for higher office in the future. We will let them know that we are not as dumb as they thought. On point about Wayne Curry, he is a Republican who plays the role of Democrat.

Posted by: Harry | November 9, 2006 12:31 PM

Harrington and the rest of the goofballs on the County Council are the same ones who just voted themselves a 20% pay increase. They have succeeding in raising some issues all right -- just how dumb he and his fellow members are, and not deserving of that pay raise they gave themselves.

Posted by: PO'd PG Voter | November 9, 2006 12:36 PM

I worked for Steele and Ehrlich in Montgomery County. The idea that Cardin and O'Malley and Democrats in general are going to do anything for PG County is laughable. How many years have elapsed testing that theory?

The reason blacks as a group have little to show for years of political support is that they keep voting for the party of government and not the party of enterprise. I talked with many Hispanics, Asians and other minorities. I could sense that they knew that vying for government largesse is futile and that the only way to succeed is to grow the pie. Trying to gain government patronage is what you do in Haiti, Iraq or Zimbabwe. It does nothing for you in the US.

So good luck. As a former PG resident, I can guarantee that PG will be complaining as loudly 4 years from now as they are now.

Posted by: Genghis Khan | November 9, 2006 12:49 PM


I have no problem with using one's electoral power to be a power broker. But it should be done in a sophisticated manner. This was childish and petty. Fortunately,the Democratic party is forgiving. I can't speak for voters these folks have to answer to, however....

Posted by: RJean | November 9, 2006 1:44 PM

Harrington and the others exposed themselves to be purely ignorant. If they thought this was a savvy move to enhance themselves or the county of Prince Georges they are foolish. To stand with a man that has exhausted his political options is doubly foolish. To put you eggs in one basket and not think of the potential negatives if the vote does not go your way is another sign of ignorance. If the issue is getting PG its due from Annapolis, you need to call out the PG delegation to the state legislature first, not jeopardize the parties stake in the national arena. If PG is not getting its share, the PG state delegation is not doing its job. Next you go to the Congressman or Senator for your area [Wynn], who leaves a lot to be desired as well, and push for the pork. [what did Steele promise them?] Lastly, PG needs to be innovative as well. PG is the last frontier within the beltway and what are they attracting economically to build the tax base. That's your job Harrington! So maybe you need to do better. Frankly, these folks, if they have not done it on their own, need to be destroyed politically. I would love a recall petition. The bigger insult is the vague reasoning for this move. what it boils down to is they did not have a plan or a thought out agenda, more stupidity. I am black and have unequivocally stated dont vote based on skin color but on position. I cannot accept my elected rep being so ignorant, self serving and myopic in perspective. In PG you are not operating from a minority perspective. You are the majority. Did he not realize his stand represented me! Does he not know what his constituency is or represents? He is the representative of us, and nothing without us. He took too much liberty in this move to stand there and make that statement as though they represented 50 percent of PG. To stand with a man who's vision and agenda that is so divergent than your party simply because he is black, and I must say Black only when he wants to be, is crazy. I think the reference of Marion Barry epitomizes the mind set we are dealing. I think Harrington's career is over, and this is surely his last term if nothing happens sooner.

Posted by: OKNOW | November 9, 2006 2:01 PM

When we were voting in the primary we had the opportunity to look at all the candidates running for Democratic seat on the general election. It was WE THE PEOPLE that made the choice to have Ben Cardin run as the Democratic nominee. What were the fab 5 thinking they were going to do by endorsing Steele? They certainly couldn't change the record that I looked at when I decided to select Cardin over Mfume as I saw that he'd worked harder at crossing party lines to get things done? Steele in my opinion has a record of not showing his support for the people by the lack of his voice to stop Erlich from hurting those of us with kids in college or about to go to college, those of us that must pay the exorbitant increases in natural gas prices to heat our homes or the stupid move to try and sell flood plains to developer friends. I hope that the good citizens of PG county will remember these individuals during the next election cycle and make their opinions known.

Happy this election is over. Now how do those of us that live in Montgomery County get Robin Flicker to stop wasting our time and our recycling space with his election fliers year after year?

Posted by: SBRichards | November 9, 2006 2:01 PM

The whole thing makes me so angry I can't even put together a decent post on this. Ther reference to Marion Barry just makes the situation worse - Harrington really doesn't know when to stop - a 'mea culpa' would have gone over much better and perhaps he might have saved his job, but as it is, these five will pay with their jobs.

Posted by: star11 | November 9, 2006 2:13 PM

To get rid of Robin Flicker you have to build a new arena in downtown, that is move just like the Washington Wizards did.

Posted by: to SBRichards | November 9, 2006 2:16 PM

I am a Prince George's County resident - have been for most of my adult life. I love my county and I'm proud of the way the people responded to the attempt of these crossover Democrats to present their own self-serving goals wrapped in an issue that affects both parties. I was insulted by the comments of Wayne Curry and the support for Steele by the other council members. To suggest that the Democratic Party is any worse than the Republican Party when it comes to politics of black Democrats is a bad joke. Both parties are pretty bad at it. And Mr. Curry leads the bad pack.

What these six attempted to do was shameful - all in the name of blackness. How soon they forget that a vote for Steele is a vote in support of the administration that left thousands of black people on the streets of New Orleans to die post Katrina.

But then again, these 6, especially Mr. Curry would probably say that the mistreatment of the Katrina survivors was about class and not race. Mr. Curry, Mr. Dean and their co-conspirators are truly in a class by themselves.

Posted by: PG County Dem | November 9, 2006 2:24 PM

...they're toast!

Posted by: I smell something burning... | November 9, 2006 2:28 PM

Who were the 24,000 people in Montco dumb enough to vote for Robin Ficker????

Posted by: tiredofRobin | November 9, 2006 2:29 PM

Just a thought or two on this issue. It appears to me, and many others, that those PG Democrat politicians who publicly endorsed Mr. Steele's candidacy obviously took their Black/African-American constituents for granted, assuming we would blindly follow their leads as opposed to carefully examining the issues and voting our conscience. This is based on the tone of their statements at the press conference announcing their endorsement. Would they have crossed party lines and endorsed a White Republican candidate? Accordingly, instead of urging the careful scrutinization of the issues, they made a leap of blind faith and urged their minority constituents to follow their leads. They claimed that the Democratic Party has taken the Black/African-American vote for granted, and therefore we should cast our ballot for Mr. Steele, a Black Republican who, for all of his claims of being independent, was bankrolled by the Republican Party. For no other reason!! Not because they presented a better plan! As it turns out, they took us for granted. They insulted their own people, and hopefully this will not be forgotten should any of them run for office in the future. Also, it is not without notice that Mr. Curry, no longer an elected county official, appeared to be a leader in this effort. IF there was any sincerity about their conviction for Mr. Steele, why, then, did they allow themselves to be portrayed as following Mr. Curry's own selfish political ambition. Or did they drink the kool-aid from the ruthlessly ambitious Mr. Curry's vat? You blew it!

Posted by: Anonymous | November 9, 2006 2:38 PM

Steele try to play both sides. Playing Mr. Conservative to the white Republicans while also trying to turn up the race card with blacks. Of course, I brand Mr. Steele as an anti-black racist who reincarnated the southern redneck type of polictics in dealing with black people. SHAME ON HIM and all who supported him.

Posted by: DCin Bowie | November 9, 2006 2:46 PM

I live in Prince George's County and what these people did was so insulting to the residents. I am so glad that the residents proved that they are smarter than these turncoats. Hopefully, they will be on the unemployment list soon and then get a job making $5.15 an hour.

Posted by: Dot | November 9, 2006 2:58 PM

The Dems in PG made the same mistake Bush made all along: Political arrogance. They took the population for granted and felt that it would follow them blindly. The people of Prince Georges County are much better educated on the issues and politics in general than they (The Shameful Six)realized.

I did not know about the "slaves" signs but Steele played himself. His selective embrace of his heritage and hopes (that others would ignore the fact that his campaign offered nothing tangible to the blacks he was wooing) ultimately did him in. Good riddance to him and the Shameful Six!

Posted by: What In The World? | November 9, 2006 3:03 PM

I hope all of this opens the eyes of all PUBLIC SERVICE OFFICIALS (local, state, national). Voters will vote on the issues that affect them, not on skin color, like-ability, or out of spite for a political party. The way to get the Democratic party to respect African-American voters isn't to endorse or vote Republican in some sort of hissy-fit/temper tantrum. You do it by speaking out and allowing your voice to be heard. Holding all politicains accountable. In addition to using your power as tax payers.

In politics there are no permanent friends or no permanent enemies only permanent interests. Publics officials are on notice.

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter.
~ Martin Luther King Jr.

Rebuttal for Genghis Khan's Posting:

Genghis Khan: "The reason blacks as a group have little to show for years of political support is that they keep voting for the party of government and not the party of enterprise."

LandoverMDVoter:I am not sure what you mean but PG county is the greatest concentration of Africa-American wealth in the Country. My own personal opinion I can care less about what party it is - as long as it is focused on the people. History has shown us that the Republican party is about "big business" and "less gov't" and not focused on the people. That idea of "less gov't" is misleading. What it really means is less gov't responsibility. Privatize everything. Put all control in the hands of big business. I will never support that kind of thinking. I am all for free enterprise but not at the expesive of the people. Currently in this country the Corporations and Lobbyist are the ones getting there interest met by waving around big checks. What you should realize is that this is affecting all of us as more and more of the U.S. is failing as more and more Corporate greed continues to fester. The concept of a making "dollar" over the health and well being of a human being it sad. Where is the so called Compassionate Conservatism in that?

Posted by: LandoverMDVoter | November 9, 2006 3:11 PM

I was so glad to read these posts and to also voice my complete disgust with Steele and the way he tried to sway African American voters in PG County at the last minute with his "Make the Dream a Reality" (a clear reference to Martin Luther King) posters outside of my polling place, Kingsford Elementary on Enterprise Rd in Mitchellville. Let me not also fail to mention the pamphlet handed to me by one of his campaign volunteers as a walked into the polls that basically likened Steele to Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglas. I was like..."WHAT?!?!?!?" The whole page was a tirade on how discrimanotory and racist Maryland was during slavery and still is today. A blatant attempt to get my vote based on skin color. I believe one of the slogans on the page was "In '06 Help a Brotha Up" I could respect Steele's opinion even though I didn't agree with him but he lost my respect after I saw that. As for the council members that endorsed him, they should now be embarrassed. It's one thing to stand with someone whom you agree with, it's another to endorse them based on race! Guess what folks.....THE VOTERS WERE NOT FOOLED BY THE BANANA IN THE TAILPIPE!!!!

Posted by: Twinkie821 | November 9, 2006 3:12 PM

Out of the Turncoat Five - I am writing Harrington and my council member. I think everyone should write Harrington for his Marion Barry comment. You could never be Marion! Even in your most illuminated moment. You're messing it up for everybody!

Posted by: LdMay6 | November 9, 2006 3:33 PM

I think voters in Maryland really dropped the ball. We had a chance to elect someone who would not have just helped Maryland, but who would have changed the entire national political dynamic.
If Mike Steele had won, he'd be on the short list for VP or even President in just a few years. We would have had a homegrown talent on the national scene. He would have been able to shakeup DC and "conventional politics". The GOP would have started to pay more attention to the black vote, and the parties would have begun to compete for it. Instead, the black vote remains monolithically and unchallengingly Democratic. Seriously, if Michael Steele, who is moderate and for affirmative action, can't make a dent in the black vote, the Republicans might as well give up on it. The Dems can continue to take it for granted.
Anyway, we really missed our shot to influence the national scene and to change conventional politics. Instead, its more of the same with Cardin.

Posted by: brainy smurf | November 9, 2006 3:33 PM

Out of the Turncoat Five - I am writing Harrington and my council member. I think everyone should write Harrington for his Marion Barry comment. You could never be Marion! Even in your most illuminated moment. You're messing it up for everybody!

Posted by: LdMay6 | November 9, 2006 3:34 PM

The citizens of PG should be proud of the way they voted. I am white, and voted for Mfume in the primary, and was dissappointed that he lost to Cardin. I feel very strongly that blacks need more representation in the higher offices of our state. Mfume is certainly qualified. Let us all hope that the the Democratic party will seek out and support black candidates in the future.

Posted by: banneroos | November 9, 2006 3:47 PM

I can't believe how foolish the Steele Dems were, 'turncoating' is not a wise idea in an election where your party is projected to wipe out the opposition, calls their leadership and judgement skills into serious question.

Posted by: Andre Audi | November 9, 2006 3:47 PM

And what of issues of integrity? Anyone that wants to get elected bad enough to take for granted the intelligence of the entire voting african american population of the state by distributing the red/black/green flier is way too scary for me. The guy did and will do absolutely anything to get elected - including garnering a deal with the "crossover Dems". I guarentee you that's exactly what happened. He promised them something that he cannot deliver. His smile in the photo shoot with Curry and the others is priceless. Typical politician. They all have a little dirt on them.

Posted by: PG County Dem | November 9, 2006 3:56 PM

To Brainy Smurf:

It is laughable that you think Michael Steele would have made any impact at all in Washington. I'll let you in on something that you seem to have missed. Many black voters shunned Steele not because of his race, but rather his politics.

His platform traditionally has offered nothing tangible to minority voters.
From a personal standpoint, I don't like Cardin either. I voted for him because he is the lesser of two evils, first. More pointedly, Steele played the race card when he (himself) was handpicked by Bush to champion the Republican platform. He seems far too intelligent a man to not recognize the obvious contradiction of his rhetoric.

Posted by: No way Jose! | November 9, 2006 4:03 PM

Get rid of these 5 morons.

Posted by: JS | November 9, 2006 4:11 PM

Thank God it's over, and it's a pleasure to know that my fellow Prince Georges County neighbors were as insulted as I was by the racist acts of Steele, Curry and the Fabulous 5 County Council members in their attept to sway the intellegent Black voters of Prince Georges County. The ultimate insult to me was the "I Am Not a Slave..." signs that lined the streets leading to every voting precent in P.G. County. I wonder if Steel placed his 10 ft. signs displaying his Blackness at the Poles in Charles County; I doubt very seriously if he did. And as for the Council members that were prostituted by Curry, I for one will not forget. As far as I was concerned, Tony Knott's political future looked very bright prior to his endorcement of Steele, but that act showed a complete lack of sensible judgement and representation for the people who put him in office, and even though he was the only candidate on the ballot in my District, I didn't vote for him on Tuesday as I have in all previous elections even in the September primaries and I will never ever vote for him or any one of the other five Councilmembers regardless of what race they run in or who their opponents are in the future. Imagine if they were successful in that foolishness, it would be Maryland, and primarily Prince Georges County that would be responsible for the GOP maintaining the control of the Senate...wonder if they understood the National implications of their actions...probably not--idiots!!

Posted by: Tired of the Mind Games | November 9, 2006 4:13 PM

PG County has the second worst schools in the State. Steele represented a change. You keep voting for the same democratic losers year after year and you keep getting what you're getting. Nothing will change in PG county, not the crime, not the schools. Congrats!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | November 9, 2006 4:17 PM

Hey Smurfed Brains, don't you get it, Steele is a Republican. Republicans don't care anything about the averge people let alone African Americans. Steele is to the Republican Party just as Clarence Thomas is--a pone to get more of the brainwashed, usable for their own benefit African Americans on-board to strength their base. Prince Georges County is to the Republican Party just as New Orleans, too many Black folks for them to give a damn until election time. Wake up Brainy, you and Steele are disposible assets to the GOP...are and have always been.

Posted by: Tired of the Mind Games | November 9, 2006 4:24 PM

Your comments are absolute brainwashing. This why african americans in PG county are stuck on merry go round. You keep electing do nothing democrats year after year. I have to send my kids to private school because the schools are so bad. The fact that Steele is republican is ridiculous and this is why things will never change.

Posted by: no insults necessary | November 9, 2006 4:29 PM

I am registered as Independent in the state of Maryland and I live in PG County. Harrington respesents my district and I was appalled he and the other Democratic Councilmembers endorsed Steele. The point of the Democratic Party taking Blacks for granted is valid to but support a conservative just because he is from PG county and he is black is just stupid and it is almost racist. Yes most councilmen don't have competition in Nov. 7th so they must taking us for granted. And the Marion Berry theory won't work in PG County. Mr. Harrington, you are not Marion Berry!

Posted by: Independent in PG | November 9, 2006 4:33 PM

I am registered as Independent in the state of Maryland and I live in PG County. Harrington respesents my district and I was appalled he and the other Democratic Councilmembers endorsed Steele. The point of the Democratic Party taking Blacks for granted is valid to but support a conservative just because he is from PG county and he is black is just stupid and it is almost racist. Yes most councilmen didn't have competition in Nov. 7th so they must taking our vote for granted. And the Marion Berry theory won't work in PG County. Mr. Harrington, you are no Marion Berry!

Posted by: Independent in PG | November 9, 2006 4:34 PM

I can honestly say I was shocked by those fliers, it really to my mind showed that at its heart Steele and Ehrlich thought the african-american population of PG was so completely ignorant that they would be fooled by something like this.

Also it means that these guys are willing to do anything, and I mean anything to get elected, I mean they would accept votes taken by outright lying.

On a more positive note: One thing this means is that Michael Steele especially will never ever ever be elected to any state wide position in Maryland ever period end of story, nor will Ehrlich for that matter, their careers are over.

So here is my advice: 1, yes take it out on the turncoats, boot them out of office!

and 2, Put that flyer up on your wall, and if you ever think about voting for a Republican remember....

Posted by: DCDave | November 9, 2006 4:35 PM

Ooooh, so I guess it's better that you voted for Steele because he is Black than my voting against him because he's a Republican, huh. Idiot, it just means that I voted on issues and you voted on Race...Yeah, just what this Country needs more guys like you around to keep our sons, daughters, mothers, and fathers engaged in a senselss "Invasion", dying because our President Mr. "Yeah He Tried to Kill My Dad" Dubya, and Steele's "homeboy" is power hungry. You are an insult and so is your Idol Steele!!

Posted by: Tired of the Mind Games | November 9, 2006 4:39 PM

I have a question that I haven't seen answered *or even asked... If African American voters feel that the Democratic party has taken their votes for granted, what should the Democratic party DO to remedy that? It seems to be that just putting someone up as a candidate because of the color of their skin is not the solution if that person isn't the best person for the job, and isn't that what Wayne Curry and the "Turncoat 5" are asking for?

Posted by: ? | November 9, 2006 4:39 PM

I too am a registered independent. I believe all African Americans should be, its the only way to create leavage. However, Mr. Steele did well in state where democrats out-number republicans 2:1 and maybe more after Tuesday. I would not count him out.

Posted by: no insults necessary | November 9, 2006 4:41 PM

One thing i hate about politics is, its all a game to them. Political parties just go kill each other, trick, and use coercion for power which is just not right. They alsmost never fulfill their romises and they are not TRUE politicans. A true politician goes out and sees what the people want, not go see which politician best represents you. We're forming a party that has a view of seeing the demise of ALL political parties, and the views of this generation will sweep away EVERYTHING the past generations have done.

Posted by: Orion | November 9, 2006 4:42 PM

For "Tired of the Mind Games"

I did vote issues for Steele, I don't believe in abortion nor embroynic stem cell research. These were my issues. Just because they're not yours is no reason for the insults. Take a chill pill!

Posted by: no insults necessary | November 9, 2006 4:50 PM

"...If a block of voters votes with the same party all the time it will take them for granted and the other party will never do anything for them..."

Switching topics slightly, I wonder if Karl Rove and the other deep thinkers will continue to take white evangelicals for granted because they'd 'never' vote for Democrats?

Posted by: What goes around | November 9, 2006 4:50 PM

To the person moving to NoVA from PG County, just remember one thing. Richmond and the rest of the state -hate- NoVA now after the Senate win was virtually delivered to Webb by the counties of NoVA. Don't expect us to get much of the Richmond pie for a while. Then again, you can feel proud that at least there were not any "PG 5" types here. As goes NoVA, so goes the Nation.

Posted by: NOVA | November 9, 2006 4:56 PM

"PG County has the second worst schools in the State. Steele represented a change."

Hey graduate-
The quality of public schools in PG is a county issue. MD in large is known for top tier public education.

Now class, who is responsible for the county schools?

Anybody, anybody?...

ENN-NEE-WAY, hey will someone please post the full name of each member of the Turncoat Six. Lest we let Harrington, Curry & Knott take all the shame themselves.

Posted by: Duh! | November 9, 2006 5:00 PM

To all who keep saying the Maryland Democratic Party takes minority voters for granted. There was a primary not a coronation. I, like many other whites, voted for Mfume, but our candidate lost. Instead of doing stupid things like jumping party lines to support a candidate in protest, wouldn't it be better to put in place the mechanisms needed for a minority candidate to succeed in a statewide race? Personally, I would like to see political activists in PG County begin to develop the machinery to elect Elijah Cummings to the Senate when Barb Mikulski steps down. Unlike Mfume, who has been out of the political scene for some time, Elijah already has a solid base among ALL democrats in the state. He is widely known and supported by Democratic activists throughout the state, from the Western hills to the Eastern Shore.

The Democratic Party has groomed a number of minority leaders in this state, any one of whom would be a credible candidate for statewide office. Name one other state that has as many minorities in Congress (25% of the Congressional delegation), in executive positions throughout the state (3 of the 4 largest jurisdictions in the state), and in state and local political office. You will not find one.

As far as PG County and the O'Malley administration goes, unlike the Ehrlich/Steele administration, where Steele was just "there," O'Malley intends to make Anthony Brown the point man on policy and the primary interface with the GA. Who knows better the needs of the
County than he?

Posted by: vmi98mom | November 9, 2006 5:28 PM

banneroos, I agree with your comment that the Dems should promote more African-Americans to leadership spots -- maybe something as high as Lt. Gov. Oh, wait, they already did that. I think the point is that until they promote Wayne Curry to a top spot, there will be trouble in P.G.. Good thing that's not going to happen.

Posted by: pgdude | November 9, 2006 5:38 PM

People of Md., especially those of us in PG County; open your eyes! All you can do is repeat the rhetoric of your party rather than intelligently discussing the issues. Why is it ok for every other race in this country to choose whatever political party they want and not be ridiculed for it, but when an African American chooses an independant or a republican they are called "turncoats" or "oreo's"? And people wonder where the slave references come from? That's the same tactics that the slave masters used to keep the slaves from being in unity. It obviously still works today. What happened to the issues? What about the economy, same sex marraiges, abortion, education or the war? Open your eyes people. No one party in and of itself has all of the answers, it takes one person at a time who will stand up for what is right and speak up for those who can't speak for themselves, regardless of what the party says. What do THE CADIDATES stand for? But if we just blindly go to the polls and vote solely based on whether there is a D or a R by their names, we do those in the civil rights movement who fought and died so that we could have that right to vote an injustice. Whether you like it or not, whether you agree with it or not, we will all stand before God one day and give an account of our deeds done here on earth, including our votes that had an effect on whether the righteous or unrighteous are put in positions of authority. The last time I checked, our party affiliation has nothing at all to do with what we will be judged on, it will be according to His Word, and His Word only.

Posted by: Eyes Wide Open | November 9, 2006 6:09 PM

Steele and Ehrlich have not been charged with a crime and how do you know they were even involved with those flyers? As far as the issues go, a lot of you voted Democrat because of the Iraq war or just because you're a Democrat. I say that was shortsighted. Do the research. A lot of factors went into play as to why we are not doing well over in Iraq. Also, the news media never highlighted the progress, just the negative.

No one bothered to give Michael Steele a chance. Yes, he is inexperienced relative to Ben Cardin. He got only 20% of the vote in a majority black county. What that means is that some of y'all voted blindly. I bet if he was Democrat and Cardin was a Republican y'all vote for him even with the inexperience. As for Mr. Cardin, y'all voted for a man who cares nothing about the sanctity of life nor the institution of marriage. Those issues are very important and if you don't see that now, you'll see it sometime in the very near future. You can count on that. All the other "issues" are fluff that covers up the fact that Ben Cardin cares nothing about issues that will affect all of us in the long run. You'll see sooner or later. Embryonic stem cell research is simply this; you take a life to maybe, just maybe, save one? We've reached a new low in supporting what is basically human sacrifice. Shame on us.

As for Katrina, some couldn't get out but many could have. Some chose to stay. That's their fault. Furthermore, Ray Nagin and Kathleen Blanco could have done a lot more than they did. That disaster was unprecedented. Yet, everyone blames President Bush. That was faulty thinking. It wasn't all his fault. Yes, he could have done things differently. but the mayor of New Orleans & governor of Louisiana could have gotten to it and got their people out. They had a three day advance warning. Know why they came out smelling like a rose when they should have smelled like sulfur like the president? Because they're DEMOCRAT. Party affiliation seems to blind some folk.

Posted by: Issues? What issues | November 9, 2006 6:39 PM

I have agree with a lot peole. The council memebers in PG's county are a bunch of self served, arrogant pigs. They voted earlier to give them a raise. They now made almost 90k for a part time job. They do not deserve a peny of it. I live in PG's county and I am sick and tired of my hard earn money be used to pay their pig's salaries.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 9, 2006 6:50 PM

All of the Democratic politicians in PG who supported Steele should receive their comeuppance. They had a chance to fight for changes within their party, why back Steele? Did they honestly think he cared about them? And to back him because he's black is just plain stupid. Wayne Curry and the rest are selfish and opportunistic & I'm glad it backfired. The PG residents were too smart to fall for it.

Posted by: MissP | November 9, 2006 7:10 PM

"Hey graduate-
The quality of public schools in PG is a county issue. MD in large is known for top tier public education.

Now class, who is responsible for the county schools?

Anybody, anybody?..."

The democrats! Case closed!

Posted by: no insults necessary | November 9, 2006 7:11 PM

The venue to make a difference in Prince George's County is the Democratic primary. Registering as an independence might make us feel good but we might as well throw our voting rights into the garbage.

If we want change then we have to make it happen ourselves. We need to get organized in our communities and across the county. Then we will be in a position to demand excellence for Prince George's County.

If we want the dream then it's about time that start making it happen.

Posted by: Yockel | November 9, 2006 8:04 PM

First, let me say that I don't live in MD but I used to. As for the fliers - anyone could have sent those fliers out (and yes, it is possible for a Democrat to cheat in an election - I'm not accusing I'm just saying).

Next, for the "Turncoat 5" - they're just being politicians. This is what politicians do; if you feel offended, you shouldn't. They made a calculated decision at the end of the election and it didn't pan out. But they didn't hurt themselves; if Steele won they'd be rewarded by moving up (outta PG politics I'm sure) and since he lost, most aren't running for a higher office anyway. And why can't they vote for who they want just like everybody else? What's up with that?

They know what time it is for Democrats in Maryland (ask Kwesi Mfume): if you don't kiss the right ring you'll never ascend to higher office. What does towing the party line get you? Once again ask Kwesi Mfune.

Lastly, I think Steele took a big risk by taking the Reoublican vote for granted and openly courting the black Democratic vote. I know he couldn't win without it, and judging from these comments he definitely wrinkled a few feathers. He almost won (which means nothing) so I guess it didn't work.

Everybody needs to chill - the Democratic Party still rules in Maryland and still takes black peoples interest to heart (that's sarcasm -just letting you know).

Posted by: Thad | November 9, 2006 8:13 PM

issues?what issues: the way I know that Erlich and Steele were responsible for the deceptive fliers is that a) it was printed on the bottom and b) they admitted it in the press (though they tried to make it sound like it wasnt really meant to be misleading. Fortunately its main result was to enrage pretty much everyone I spoke with.

I find it very insulting that you belittle everyone elses reasons for voting for Ben Cardin. You are perfectly entitled to vote for someone that represents your beliefs but the arrogance you display by calling issues other than same-sex marriage and stem cell research "fluff" is astounding.

You are clearly the person who needs to wake up and smell the coffee. Allowing same sex marriage in no way negatively impacts my life, nor will it in the future. Deterioration of Iraq into either a theocracy or a civil war-torn state have a much larger impact on our future. While honest, rational people may disagree on the issue of same-sex marriage and stem stell research (supported by more than 60% of the population btw), the number who say that should be the primary guide to how we vote is fortunately small. Most people understand what you clearly don't.


Fortunately the people of PG County have more intelligence than Steele or Erlich counted on. I am proud of my neighbors. And I would appreciate it if you stop insulting them and assuming they voted Democratic by habit, and realize that they did that because the Republican party didn't put a compelling vision in front of them.

Posted by: elf | November 9, 2006 8:26 PM

I remember when Ralph Abernathy of the SCLC came out in support of Ronald Reagan. In honor of Mr. Abernathy, I coined the phrase "the Ralph Abernathy School for the Mentally Infirm." Anytime a public person, who should have known better, endorsed a conservative Republican, they became a graduate of the RASMI. Looks like the Fab Five are the newest Alumni.

Posted by: JJ | November 9, 2006 8:44 PM

I'M AMAZED AT MOST OF THE THINGS I 'VE READ REGARDING BLACK ELECTED OFFICIAL IN PG SUPPORTING M. STEELE. WHEN WILL BLACKS REALIZED THAT WE NEED A VOICE IN BOTH THE MAJOR PARTIES. HASN'T RECENT HISTORY SHOWN US THAT WHEN WE JUST GIVE OUR VOTES TO DEMOCRATS AND DON'T EVEN CONSIDER REPUBLICANS WE PUT OUR SELVES IN A POSITIN TO GET TAKE FOR GRANTED AND IGNORED. ANYONE REMEMBER 2002 GOVERNOR ELECTION, OR MFUME CAMPAIGNE. I'VE BEEN VOTING FOR THE LAST 18 YEARS, AND ONE THING I'VE NOTICED OFTEN WHEN TALKING WITH BLACK DEMOCRATS. THE REASON BLACK DEMOCRATS GIVE FOR SUPPORTING THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY IS THAT REPUBLICANS ARE RACIST. I THINK TWO MANY OF US WALK AROUND WITH BLINDERERS ON, REFUSING TO THINK OPENLY ABOUT ISSUES. M. STEELE WAS A GREAT OPPORTUNITY FOR US TO FORCE THE DEMOCRATS TO TAKE US SERIOUS. UNFORTUNATELY WE MISSED THAT CHANCE. BACK TO BEING IGNORED.

Posted by: marty | November 9, 2006 8:46 PM

And this is kind of my point: I thought we always told white people that we don't always think alike, act alike, eat the same foods, play basketball. But if one black person happens to have a different political ideology than another - he becomes foolish, idiotic, or even "Tomish". We then show white people that indeed we all do "think" alike. Politics trump race EVERY TIME.

I don't understand. These are just ideas; ideas on which we as a country (and we as a people) can advance and how our improve our lives and our families lives. To cut a brother quick because he praises (much less support) a Republican is maddening.

It's not like the Democratic Party is batting 100% on everything they've ever tried (or not tried) for black people. And I don't think black Democrats are crazy (really, I don't).

Posted by: Thad | November 9, 2006 8:55 PM

The fact the more Prince Georgian politicians seem more interest in bringing upscale stores and restaurants than getting our schools from the cellar statewide is equally maddening. And these politicians are democrat's year after bloody year. Heck I'd vote for the green party if they would fix crime and the schools in this county. In the mean time your precious democrats voted themselves a raise for such a wonderful job they do on a part time basis. Joy to the world. When will we wake up?

Posted by: no insults necessary | November 9, 2006 9:53 PM

One of the PG Council 5 is Marilyn Bland, the lady who spent $4000 in school board money to take her family to Disney World and then spent $11,000 of school board money on her County Council race. She is 1 of 9 reasons the elected school board was removed years ago.
Also, she got Lord Baltimore Middle School renamed after her late "friend" Isaac Gourdine (who is buried in North Carolina, not Prince george's County)

Posted by: Ted | November 9, 2006 10:06 PM

Breaking ranks can be bad thing. Some may make the impression that a person doesn't blindly follow the party line and actually vote based on the person and their beliefs. Is that really "taboo"? How dare a black person break away from a monolithic voting block and decide for themselves. I wonder who is going to write the articles on how black Democrats and black Republicans were treated for actually considering or voting for Steele? I don't agree with the "unnamed" senate candidate skit. In reality, Steele ran away from his biggest asset. That was his conservatism. He should have tried to build a support network among black preachers and clergy. He ran away from his pro life stance. He didn't even bring up his support for the defense of marriage. Most black people don't even care about stemcell research.In the end, he didn't really give a message that blacks could connect with other that he was black. I'm hearing rumors that he might be running against O'Malley for Governor in 2010. If he does, I hope he learned from his brutally honest mistakes. I'm glad once again, some blacks decided to be free thinkers and vote outside the box.
www.wakeupblackamerica.blogspot.com

Posted by: Tyrone | November 9, 2006 10:54 PM

I address the Honorable Senator-elect Ben Cardin (D-MD). Sir: You won most of the black vote statewide (includes my vote in Baltimore County). Never again can people claim blacks vote primarily with color in mind. I concluded well before the election
that I would reject Steele in favor of you.
I did this on the basis of issues, integrity, and your record of fairness.
SHAME, more SHAME on the PG5, a set of clowns who insulted the intelligence of citizens of color in that county. And SHAME on Michael Steele who should go have lunch with Justice Clarence Thomas; he'd be more comfortable there. I would not vote Steele for dogcatcher.

Posted by: Clyde McDowell, RN | November 9, 2006 11:56 PM

First of all, I am disappointed that these five Democrats were naive enough to fall for the Steele campaign.

Second, I have a personal connection to these flyers. I am a student at American University, and also part of the "AU College Republicans." For Nov 7th, we bused volunteers into Prince George's county and gave out that flyer- provided by PG Republicans. Although I was not present, a colleague told me told me that they were told to "give them out to people who looked stupid or poor."

I was horrified and I hope that this never happens again.

Posted by: Casey | November 10, 2006 2:28 AM

I've read some more of the comments and want to add this. I do not believe that it's fair to vote blindly down party lines. My vote is always based on the issues that I feel are important and who most closely resembles how I think and feel about things on the state level. I tend to listen to what both parties have to say about a particular argument and then make the best decision I can. I'm a democrat but I still listened to what Mr. Steele had to say. I didn't hear anything close to what I personally believe so I went the other way. As to those ridiculous flyers, the Republicans ought to be ashamed and I'm glad Casey stepped up a told what he/she knew about them. I'm not a slave for voting democratic, I'm a citizen that made a choice which is my right! That's the beauty of our system. I CHOOSE!

Posted by: Twinkie821 | November 10, 2006 10:45 AM

The country voted in Democrats because they voted against Bush and the war. Those that supported Steele were voting against the Democratic party's neglect of Prince George's County. I don't know why some of you consider one honorable and the other a disgrace. Prince George's county schools are a joke; and the crime and poverty that is allowed to exist displays negligence (at best) on the part of one of the most liberal states in the country. (Let's not forget that 75% of black males in Baltimore don't graduate high school!) Only a fool does the same thing over and over again and expects to get a different result. But based on some of the comments on this board, it seems that some are more into the political game and revenge against the "turncoat 5" than what's best for this state's citizens. I've been a Democrat all my life, but I'm not drinking the Kool-Aid for them. God help us all.

Posted by: PG County resident | November 10, 2006 11:45 AM

It's sad to see how much people forget the racist history of the Democratic party. The distorted view that the Democratic party is and has been the party standing up for African Americans is an outrageous bit of revisionist history. Believe it or not, it is possible to be a non-Democrat and not be racist or to be a Democrat and be racist (like it was the party of segregation, remember?). For too many African Americans, party line and race have come to mean the same thing. How sad that people are so blind to the long trail of broken promises made by Democrats and institutional suppression of African Americans fostered by many of their policies (especially in education). If the African American community is to continue making progress in eduction, employment and basic civil rights, then eyes need to be opened to the good and bad in all political parties. It was courageous of the PG leaders to endorse Steele to raise awareness that votes should not be taken for granted.

Posted by: TC | November 10, 2006 2:36 PM

To: SBRichards, vmi98 mom, and Yockel:
You have it exactly right -- pick your party on the basis of what it stands for as a party overall, then pick your candidates in the primaries to influence your party's position on particular issues.

Because parties work as machines in governance, a vote for a party affiliate supports the whole party, no matter what you think of the particular candidate. Remember, Katherine Harris ended up electing George Bush in 2000. There are no offices so unimportant that you can ignore party affiliation.

I am a Montgomery County Democrat who used to split my ticket to vote for a few Republicans who seemed particularly decent. Then I finally understood that Connie Morella's first vote of each Congressional session allowed Tom DeLay to control the agenda in the House. Michael Steele's vote, if he had been elected, would have allowed Bill Frist to continue controlling the agenda in the Senate.

There are still some Republicans I like (Lincoln Chafee or Olympia Snow, for example) but if they want my vote, they'll have to switch to the party where I think they belong in the first place

If you like the Republican's agenda overall, fine. Vote for them. But if you think that the Democrats as a party have more of a commitment to helping the people you care about, then you should be voting a Democratic ticket, and using the primaries to make sure that the people on that ticket have the same priorities that you do.

One last point -- So few people bother to examine the candidates and vote in the primaries that your vote in the primaries (and your efforts to sway the votes of others) actually have far more influence than whatever you personally do in the general election.

Posted by: proud party liner | November 10, 2006 5:11 PM

Speaker Pelosi believes in political payback, and I would venture to bet that some folks on Ms. Pelosi's staff live in PG county. If the Demos who supported Mr. Steele want a dime from the Democratic Party, you can be sure the request will come to the attention of Speaker Pelosi. Conversely, anybody who has thought about running against the PG folks who endorsed Steele should send endorsement and funding request to Speaker Pelosi, US Capitol, Washington DC.

Posted by: harryo | November 10, 2006 5:46 PM

I just wanted to put my two cents in about the republicans bringing in out of state people from shelters to work the polls in Prince George's County and Baltimore. voters need to pay attention this happened in the primary as well, however this time they were used by the democratic candidate Donna Edwards and others. some of the poll workers were from rehab centers located in Balto. we should watch out for wolves in sheep's clothing. all democratics aren't what they seem and this was proved to us by the County Council members and others...Democratics should unite NOW as one unit, If we don't we will fall on our faces again and the republicans will be back in the drivers seat. Democratic should pay attention to the post marks on the mailers that you received. Prince Georges's candidates mailers should not be mailed from LA, Tx etc. again watch out for the wolves... Thanks for the opportunity to express my views on this issue..............

Posted by: Flora | November 14, 2006 2:45 PM

I just hope the PG County politicians' actions don't come back and bite all of us who live in PG County in the butt since Democrats - Cardin and O'Malley - won, despite the efforts of those turncoat Democrats in PG County.

Our so-called "leaders" got so caught up in their own agenda, they forgot who would be most affected. The people who put them in office. The people they answer, in case they forgot.

I, for one, will remember this come the next Election.

Posted by: CEEAF | November 16, 2006 4:52 PM

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