WAIT! ADEM Picks are REVISED Due to CDP’s BS!!

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You may resume your voting within a day or two!

Bottom line: we’ve removed some endorsed candidates from our ADEM endorsements page.  The asterisks indicate that, under CDP rules, a candidate who signed up for E-Board can choose to decline the position in favor of the next highest-ranked candidate. (Where there’s no asterisk, it means that we’re not going to bother asking the leading candidates to yield in this way.)

Specifically, and unfortunately, we no longer endorse candidates the following for ADEM positions, even in our lowest tier:

  • AD-55: James Gallagher, Gregg Fritchle*
  • AD-65: Saara Sulliman*
  • AD-68: Nina Baldwin*, Kyler Asato*, and Andrew Swetland*
  • AD-69: no change
  • AD-72: no change
  • AD-73: James Bacon*  (and for more on this complete disaster; see below)
  • AD-74: Michelle Bell*, Lamba Najib*

We’re not simply regretful at having to do this, although we are certainly that.  We are royally pissed at having to do it.  (The withdrawal of endorsements in AD-68 and AD-74 is especially galling — and AD-73, where I simply can’t bring myself to do it, is fucking infuriating.)

The blame falls entirely on the CDP — and the buck stops with its Chair, Rusty Hicks. 

Here are the rules that we have played by in the past and that we thought we were playing by again this year:

First: people could vote for up to 14 candidates for ADEM delegate positions on the state party’s Central Committee — spread out as desired among two gender categories (the composition of which have slightly changed to accommodate trans persons and those with non-binary identities, none of which relates to the problem discussed here.)  But only 7 people from each gender category would win, so voting, say, for 14 women would guarantee that at least 7 of one’s votes would fail, and one would have no voice regarding the other category.  This part of the process has remained in effect.

Second: in addition to the up to 14 votes for DSCC/ADEM positions, one would cast a single vote for which person would serve on the CDP/DSCC’s “Executive Board” (“E-Board.); the person with the highest number of votes for E-Board among those winning election to an ADEM delegate spot  would become the E-Board rep for that district.  It was somewhat, but not. highly rare for someone to receive the most E-Board votes — yet still lose the position because they had lost the vote for an ADEM spot.

This system had several advantages:  First, one might want to support a novice for and ADEM position without wanting to put them on the E-Board until they better got to know the party’s internal structure and politics.  Just as importantly, it eliminated any benefit of “strategic voting” that would crop up without a separate vote.  For example, if Vern and I were both running for E-Board, it would be to my advantage to not vote for — or even campaign against — Vern for an ADEM spot, because his not winning such a spot would make it easier for me to win.

Well guess what the CDP did — without prior notification so that even current delegates didn’t learn of the change until they finished filling out their ballots?  The offered no way to vote for an E-Board rep at all — and decided that whoever won the most votes among the 14 ADEMs would become the E-Board rep.

To take the most egregious example: for E-Board in AD-73 I endorsed Sudi Farokhnia, whom I don’t know personally, but who — based on what I’ve seen on the delegate site — seems to be the standout of the 2019 entering class.  But I also endorsed five other people for ADEM spots but not E-Board.  Four of them — Octavia Tuohey, Richard Hurt, Neilan Chaturvedi and Parvan Khosravi definitely, without question, should be elected as ADEMs, though I still think that Farokhnia would be best.  (I am withdrawing my endorsement for James Bacon, simply because he was my final choice and I don’t want to risk his beating the others.  Seven other people who are running for E-Board — Alan Fenning, Eric Traut, Jenna Beck, and Lenore Flippin’ Albert are the only ones with whom I’m familiar –and I don’t want them (it would most likely be Fenning or Traut) to beat the five I like.

So, due to this surprise rule change, I have to consider NOT voting for Tuohey, Hurt, Chaturvedi, and Khosravi to become ADEM delegates if I want Farokhnia to win — and I am just not going to fucking do it!  But I suspect that some other people might — and that makes all of the other left-friendlies less likely even to make it onto the ADEM — unless, that is, some of them disavow their E-Board run.

Usually, this sort of disorganization is the candidates’ fault: in retrospect, knowing of this rule change, left-friendlies could have encouraged only one good candidate to run for E-Board.  But again — the rule was unknown, except to, I suppose, CDP insiders.  (The prospect that establishment slates could prepare for this while leftist slates could not is where this veers from dumbassery to potential election rigging.)  Leftist candidates were all going to run for office together and then only try to out-compete one another in a second, separate election.  Not letting this be publicly known is absolutely inexcusable.

About Greg Diamond

Somewhat verbose attorney, semi-retired due to disability, residing in northwest Brea. Occasionally runs for office against bad people who would otherwise go unopposed. Got 45% of the vote against Bob Huff for State Senate in 2012; Josh Newman then won the seat in 2016. In 2014 became the first attorney to challenge OCDA Tony Rackauckas since 2002; Todd Spitzer then won that seat in 2018. Every time he's run against some rotten incumbent, the *next* person to challenge them wins! He's OK with that. Deposed as Northern Vice Chair of DPOC in April 2014 (in violation of Roberts Rules) when his anti-corruption and pro-consumer work in Anaheim infuriated the Building Trades and Teamsters in spring 2014, who then worked with the lawless and power-mad DPOC Chair to eliminate his internal oversight. Expelled from DPOC in October 2018 (in violation of Roberts Rules) for having endorsed Spitzer over Rackauckas -- which needed to be done. None of his pre-putsch writings ever spoke for the Democratic Party at the local, county, state, national, or galactic level, nor do they now. One of his daughters co-owns a business offering campaign treasurer services to Democratic candidates and the odd independent. He is very proud of her. He doesn't directly profit from her work and it doesn't affect his coverage. (He does not always favor her clients, though she might hesitate to take one that he truly hated.) He does advise some local campaigns informally and (so far) without compensation. (If that last bit changes, he will declare the interest.)