The ADP's State Democratic Executive Committee meets in Montgomery this Saturday, 8/16 with a full agenda. They'll be electing officers for the next four years – including (rumor has it) a new chair to take over from current chair Nancy Worley. Newly-elected members who won their races during the June primary will be seated, there are vacant candidate slots the committee needs to fill, and there's the possibility that the “diversity amendment” will reappear in some form or fashion.
The public is invited to attend the meeting & if you've never been to an SDEC meeting, well, I can tell you that it's an “experience.” I don't mean that in a good way, either. Over the past few years, I've watched as Roberts Rules of Order were twisted beyond recognition, motions ruled out of order simply because the ADP leadership didn't want to discuss them (example 1, example 2), and seen the leadership display a simultaneous slavish devotion to the letter of some of the by-laws – and a distinct disdain for some of the more inconvenient portions. For instance, the party by-laws say that this meeting has to take place between August 1 & August 15. Saturday is the 16th.
An SDEC meeting is an experience that sends many attendees directly to the nearest bar as soon as the meeting adjourns.
The race to watch on Saturday is, of course, the chair's race. Multiple names have been floated and there's at least one declared candidate:
- Josh Seagall, who came heartbreakingly close to knocking off Congressman Mike Rogers in AL-03 in 2008, was mentioned. Last week though, Seagall took to his Facebook page to announce that the rumors were just that: he isn't running.
- Redding Pitt, a former ADP chair who left office in 2005, has been mentioned, but hasn't made any public statements.
- Nancy Worley, the current interim chair, reportedly wants to step down due to health reasons.
- Dennis Bates, who declared his candidacy in a rather unhinged letter to SDEC members, is the only candidate openly running for the position.
She [Worley] said then, that she had just been in a meeting with a lesbian group in Mobile and she wanted the party to make a place on the Executive Board (the inner circle of the party) for the leader of this lesbian group. That would have given this person tremendous power, equal to Dr. Joe Reed, to affect the direction of the party for the foreseeable future. Worley did not seem to care that in the Buckle of the Bible belt, the regular man in the street, the voter who makes up the majority and elects the leaders of the state, would see this as a direct affront to their views. On the contrary, she felt it would broaden the party's appeal. How much more politically tone deaf can one get?
It got worse from there & there's no reason I can see to publicize it further, other than to say that Bates lists his campaign work for a number of Republicans (including former Illinois Representative Phil Crane's 1980 presidential bid).