Home Local Politics Evan Macbeth to Be New LCDC Chair? Coup Attempt vs. Bruce Roemmelt...

Evan Macbeth to Be New LCDC Chair? Coup Attempt vs. Bruce Roemmelt in PWC? Plus, Fairfax Wackiness.


After the third straight year of disastrous elections for Democrats here in Virginia, you’d expect a great deal of ferment among Democratic committees, including DPVA. In the case of the DPVA, of course, we’re not seeing that, as the culture of non-accountability for failure is deeply entrenched there. Bottom line: at DPVA, it’s much more about who people “like,” maintaining their exclusive club, racial/gender/regional politics, etc., than about competence and merit. In other words, DPVA seems well beyond hope.

At the local committee level, though, we’re seeing a bit more ferment right now. Over at NLS, Ben reports that “In York/Poquoson, the new Chair is Jake Evans, a 21 year old local student.” Congratulations to Jake, talk about a youth movement!

On a far less pleasant note, Ben reports that “Party switcher Chris Wade who ran for Supervisor as a “Democrat” this year (voting in his first Democratic Primary for himself) was elected Co-Chair of the Braddock District Democratic Committee.” Now, to be clear, I have ZERO problem with party switchers from “R” to “D.” Recall that I “drafted” one of them  — Jim Webb for Senate in 2006 — and worked for his campaign. So what’s the difference between Chris Wade and Jim Webb (other than that Chris Wade is NO Jim Webb in any way, shape or form)? Simple: Jim Webb explained, repeatedly and persuasively, the thought process that led him to move from the Republican Party to the Democratic Party. In Chris Wade’s case, there STILL, believe it or not, has been no explanation for how he went from self-identified “strong McCain-Palin supporter” in 2008 (3 years ago) to suddenly a “Democrat” today. So, what’s Wade doing as a Democrat, and what in bloody you-know-where is Wade doing being ELECTED to a Democratic Committee?!? What I’m hearing is that, for whatever reason(s), Wade is seen by certain “powers that be” as a potential Democratic candidate in the future. Why, I have no idea, but it’s certainly not based on Wade’s efforts for Democrats over the years, that’s for sure. Terrible choice by the Braddock District Democratic Committee.

In other news, I’m hearing that Evan Macbeth (pictured with Mark Warner above) is highly likely to be elected the next chair of the Loudoun County Democratic Committee on January 7 (he was the only announced candidate as of a few days ago, after Andy Resnick pulled out of the running). I think that’s great news, as LCDC is in desperate need of having strong, energetic, dynamic new leadership, which Evan will provide. Evan’s challenges basically involve picking up the pieces — actually, more like rubble — from the Mike Turner years as LCDC chair. That includes a 9-0 Republican Loudoun County Board of Supervisors, former LCDC members running around endorsing against their own party, and general dysfucntion all around (come to think of it, LCDC isn’t that dissimilar to that other Macbeth – Shakespeare’s, including the intrigue, backstabbing, deceit, etc.). I wish Evan Macbeth the best of luck in pulling together all the REAL Democrats in Loudoun County and in reenergizing the LCDC!

Lots more on the “flip,” including the coup attempt against Bruce Roemmelt and the wackiness in FCDC that needs to be stopped.

Meanwhile, in that other big, exurban NOVA county, Prince William, I’m hearing that there’s a possible coup attempt going on against current PWCDC chair (and progressive champion, two-time candidate against “Sideshow Bob”) Bruce Roemmelt. The revolt’s apparently being led by former Del. Paul Nichols, and that he’s attempting to get Harry Wiggins (Nichols’ former aide in Richmond) elected chair instead. Apparently, Nichols et al. believe that Bruce didn’t do a good job with the 2011 elections. I’m hearing rumblings as well that the Connolly folks weren’t thrilled with the job Bruce did in 2011 either. My understanding is that the election for chair will be held January 10. Barring some REAL reason to replace Bruce Roemmelt as chair, I hope that PW County Dems will stick with him, as he’s a great guy, hard worker, and strong Democrat (“from the Democratic wing…”).

Finally, one last word on Fairfax County. Remember this story, in which a unauthorized/sham/shell organization (no website, no Facebook page, no Twitter account, no donations in 2008, 2010 or 2011, a whopping $100 raised in 2009) calling itself the “Fairfax League of Conservation Voters”  — which Virginia League of Conservation Voters (LCV) President Lisa Guthrie described as an “independent PAC…not a chapter or affiliate of Virginia LCV” — actually endorsed  the anti-environment, Tea Party/Cuccinelli-favorite John Cook (R) for Braddock District Supervisor over passionate environmentalist Janet Oleszek (D). Well, now, believe it or not, the head of that “organization,” Tania Hossain, is running to be Chair of Precinct Operations for FCDC. Clearly, that is not acceptable, after this individual endorsed John Cook over Janet Oleszek just a few months ago, potentially costing Democrats a County Board seat; that is if you believe Cook’s use of the phony “LCV” endorsement could have won him 371 more votes (out of almost 25,000 cast) to defeat Janet Oleszek by that slim margin. I definitely believe that, and it truly infuriates me to this day. I urge both Democrats running for LCDC chair — Barbara Caputo and Cesar del Aguila — to address this situation ASAP. I swear, I’m tempted to endorse whichever candidate takes the most forceful action against this travesty. (UPDATE: That last statement was mostly rhetorical, but hopefully it makes my point.]

  • PWVoter

    They should know a bad job with elections first hand after Paul’s bar-crawl turned campaign in 2007 and 2009.  This is nothing more than an attempt by the old-guard to retake control.

    Nichols and Wiggins were absent all year. The last time Paul showed up to a meeting was in January! Harry has missed at least the last two monthly meetings – maybe he has been too busy hiking with Gilmore appointee Dave Brickley!

    Bruce did a great job for the Prince William campaigns and deserves a full term to try and fix this sinking ship.  

  • Chris

    So you are saying you will make a decision to support a particular candidate for Democratic Chair of the most important jurisdiction in Virginia, which is one of the most important states next year, soley on whether they repudiate a candidate for a Vice-Chair position because that candidate is the head of an organization that endorsed Cook last year?

    That is a little short sighted isn’t it?  

    I was a big Oleszek supporter and was furious at the LCV Cook endorsement, but it was the organization that endorsed, not Tania.  

    Fairfax County delivered a 112,000 vote margin for Obama in 2008 and we will probably have to deliver an even larger one this year.  We need a strong and experienced Chair to do that and that person is Barbara Caputo. To support someone other than Barbara over an issue like this is pretty silly to put it mildly.

  • ToddSmyth

    Well, I know this wont be popular but unlike many local party members, Chris Wade actually did show up to volunteer on a regular basis for Democrats in Fairfax County in 2011 (after his primary loss).  I agree there was not enough of an effort to introduce him and address his party switch.  That was a mistake.  I definately like Janet Oleszek a great deal but just because she is a good, long standing Democrat doesn’t make Chris Wade a bad person.  I worked with Chris, putting up 4×8 signs for Sharon Bulova and saw him at the Springfield campaign office several times this past cycle.  To talk to him in casual conversation, you would think he is more liberal than most of our elected Democratic leaders in NOVA.  We need all the people we can get.  Especially ones who volunteer and work to get our people out to vote.

    On Tania Hossain, there are few people in Fairfax County that could claim they have done more than Tania to get Democrats out to vote.  I don’t understand the Farifax LCV issue and I would like to know more about that but if it’s a straw front group, they may have used Tania’s name without her knowledge?  I would consider Tania to be more liberal than Lowell (very hard to do) and I know Tania has worked very hard for FX Supervisor Linda Smyth, who I thought was the most progressive environmentalist on the board?  Tania was also a long standing leadership member of Brigades until she had to step away because of a serious health issue this past year.

    On a slightly different but related note, I have a co-worker who lives in Fredricksburg and has been a staunch Republican for most of her life.  However, she is on Wellbutrin to help her stop smoking (also anti anxiety) and she has just this morning been cursed out online by a second old friend of hers, who has accused her of being a bleeding heart, liberal Democrat for defending foreign healthcare systems compared to ours. Hmm? Anti anxiety drugs?

  • I’m another voice chiming in in support of Chris Wade.  We’ve all seen the sharp turn to the right that the Republican party has taken even since 2008, and Chris no longer identifies with the Republican party as it has become.  And what’s more, he has worked very hard for Democratic candidates.

    So I am very happy to welcome him as Braddock Co-Chair.  (Disclosure, I also serve on the Executive Committee, as I’m the Treasurer of Braddock District.)  I support Chris 100%, and I was a die-hard Janet supporter during the primary.  Braddock is a sort of cranky district (which is why I love it) and there is always a lot of cross-over voting here.  Chris is going to be able to reach out to a lot of voters that someone like me can’t reach (just as I can reach out to voters that would be more difficult for someone like Chris) which should make the Democratic turnout in Braddock stronger.

  • I’m no longer in Prince William, so I don’t know all the ins and outs, but I think Bruce is a great guy who really REALLY helped build the party in super red northern PWC and has done a terrific job as chair.