(Thanks to Ben not just for running, but for fighting for progressive values, for Howard Dean’s 50-state strategy, for the importance of the Democratic Party embracing and fully utilizing social media, and for running a positive campaign focused on the issues. As far as I’m concerned, Ben has a lot to be proud of from the way he conducted himself in this race, no matter what the “powers that be” want to say about him (as if they’re paragons of virtue or something – ha!). – promoted by lowkell)
There’s a lot to talk about from yesterday’s convention. Before we all dive into the details, I just wanted to write a quick note of thanks to the entire Blue Virginia family for their support of my campaign for the DNC.
Look, I know that I was a seriously flawed candidate. For people out there that couldn’t understand the bigger issues of why I was running to fix the party it was very easy to just latch onto something provocative I wrote on NLS over the last seven years and deem me unfit for any position. I knew that going in.
I was surprised though at how much further the attacks went beyond that. Emails that circulated the week before the convention included all sorts of allegations- far too many to every have any hope of responding.
Why was there such a negative campaign run against such an obviously flawed candidate? Because the establishment candidates literally had nothing positive to report for their time in office. People weren’t supporting me so much as they were supporting the issues I was running on.
In short, I’m taking these results as a huge victory. At every other state convention I’ve ever attended (back to 1996) ballots are counted by putting them into 2 piles- slate and no slate. Every time the slate pile is bigger and the ballots are never even counted, the slate is declared the winner. This time, together with Del. Lionell Spruill we forced the slate to almost exactly 20% (297 of 1480) of the vote. That meant the ballots had to be counted, and if Frank or George came in under 50% then we would force a runoff for the first time. And when the votes were counted our incumbent DNC member Frank only got 55% of Virginia Democrats to re-elect him, and his ticket mate fell short, meaning we had forced the run off!
Thanks for sticking with me and helping us make a little bit of history. I’m sorry the runoff vote that we earned never took place. I’m sure there will be a lot more discussion about that and other things that happened this weekend in the future, but don’t let that overshadow what we did accomplish together.