Just a few minutes ago, Democratic insider Stephen Bittel won his election for the Miami-Dade State Committeeman position. Of course, he represents the past when it comes to the Florida Democratic Party. He will be the next Allison Tant, or Rod Smith, or Karen Thurman. Basically, he will not be beneficial to the FDP whatsoever. We have seen this dog and pony show before, a FDP Chair candidate telling us that they will move the sun and the earth because they have great fundraising abilities. And, or course, it always ends up the same. If anything, Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders shows that money isn’t everything.
As of right now, there are
two three alternatives to Bittel on the ballot. Alan Clendenin is running for the position again (and a note, this blog actively supported Clendenin in his last bid for FDP Chair). Here is his website. We also have Osceola County DEC Chair Leah Carius running for the position. Here is her website. Lisa King of Duval County, a longtime Democrat who I knew back in my Florida Young Democrat days, is also vying for the post.
Over the course of the next few weeks, there will be bitter back-and-forth debate about the direction of the party. And yes, it will get nasty. Clendenin will probably question Carius and King, and vice versa. But in the end, all Democrats supporting these
two three candidates need to realize that it is Bittel who is the real threat to the Florida Democratic Party.
Therefore, I recommend that those who support candidates other than Bittel work together so that they have the best chance when the ballots are cast. Outsiders and progressives need to be united against Bittel, and need to put their differences aside to promote the best candidate that has the most votes. This is imperative to moving forward in 2018 and beyond.