Yesterday I concluded my role as interim Chairman of the Richmond County Democratic Executive Committee, at least my fourth tour of duty in the last 13 years.
More than 75 delegates attended, all pumped with energy and excitement about 2008.
Among those presenting remarks were State Senator Walter Dalton, candidate for Lt. Governor; State Senator Bill Purcell; Representative Melanie Wade Goodwin; Larry Kissell, our 2006 Democratic nominee for Eighth District Congressman and the presumptive 2008 nominee; Svea Strong, new county chairwoman; and myself.
I was most impressed with what Walter, Melanie, Larry and Svea had to say.
Walter was in campaign mode and delivered one of the best stump speeches I've ever heard him give. Having served with him in the legislature myself since 1996, his oratorical skills have improved exponentially (not that they were bad ten years ago at all). He expounded on why we Democrats should cast their votes for him in the 2008 primary. In addition to keeping everyone's rapt attention, Walter also threw some Democratic red meat to the attendees and they devoured it hungrily.
Melanie - and I am a little biased, of course! - gave a very passionate presentation on what the Democrats were doing in Raleigh for the betterment of Tar Heels and how it is vital that voices like hers continue to be there on behalf of young, professional mothers and businesswomen. Everyone agreed with her assertion that any one who calls North Carolina and North Carolina Democrats unfriendly to business is downright lying.
Larry is received where ever he goes with kudos and congratulations for having almost knocked off Robin Hayes from his Congressional perch last year. Neither the campaign and nor being a candidate has negatively changed Larry whatsoever; he remains our neighbor from Montgomery, a school teacher and long-time textile worker, and, as he said, "one of us." Larry inspired enough people in the room to find those remaining 330 votes he lacked last November.
Finally, Svea presented her goals for the Richmond County Democratic Party. These include more grassroots precinct work and locating a permanent headquarters. I am confident in her abilities to get things done. She also has a great team of vice chairs and other officers backing her up, including our own Jeff Joyner, the North Carolina Commander of the American Legion.
For more on the convention and remarks made by Dalton and Kissell, go to these links to news articles appearing in today's Richmond County Daily Journal:
Merely copy the links into your Internet web browser and you'll find them.
And, if you haven't already read it, you may want to consider the results of a presidential straw poll that I conducted among Democratic delegates and activists at our county convention. It is posted separately on this blog.
If you attended or have a comment about the above, do join in the discussion.