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Frantic Orthodoxy

September 7, 2005

by Jack Lynch

Despite the recent political antics and press, when it comes down to what I personally feel is best for the City of Frederick, itís Jennifer Dougherty for Mayor.

The atmosphere that surrounds this election is the same that has surrounded four years since the last primary.  But the results and steadfastness of the Mayor, at middle ground on development and citizen interests is foremost, and will be doubtful if another outcome results from next Tuesday.

At Alderman, I can endorse Marcia Hall and Donna Kuzemchek-Ramsburg, and the newcomer with the worn shoes and specific ideas, Ken Berlin.

The civility, competence and working relationships of these individuals make them valuable representatives of the citizens in all regards.  Ken took campaigning seriously.  He took the public seriously in his thoughts, and in his need to become known and welcomed into the public consciousness.

Ken worked harder.  He always believed that we  were a thinking public, open to new ideas and to consider changing things based on concepts and not just slogans and bombast.  Half of what most other candidates say is of no consequence and little resonance, itís virtually all the same in fact! I believe that he can be counted on to perform well for us, and certainly to listen to us.  I also consider him a personal friend.

There are two choices some of you will love, that I cannot put on my list.  I regret that they have not convinced me.  I wish that I could support them as fellow Democrats. 

Kip Koontz is a great fellow, just too downtown focused and I havenít seen him out at work or in the public eye enough this time around.  It is sad to note, but I suspect that one of the least important facts about him will be his final undoing in Frederick politics, there is just still a largely silent negativity about openly gay candidates here, I suspect.  I think it would have been better to run a Ďthe time is nowí campaign, and include the obvious and make the most of it.  It might have proven a winner by coalescing support.  I was your vote to win or lose.  Didnít happen.

Tom Slater, scion of the party, is suspect.  Why not the best, Tom?  If I had twenty five plus years of local commitment and contacts Iíd be running right out of the gate for Mayor.  What is the baggage that holds you down?  Too many favors and too many friends?  I fear your commitments to the status quo and the business and political interests that are already overly represented.  Sorry if thatís a broad brush, but it was your job to convince me otherwise.  Didnít happen.

Overall I wouldíve liked to have seen more fire in the belly.  Local candidates seem to count on a cushion of support from various sources that are mysterious to me.  This is a game of chance somewhat, sure, but donít take chances on not hitting the ground and sticking with the public.  You've got to represent something more than platitudes.   I guess itís that old Frederick thinking.  Saying you support 'civility and lower taxes and seniors and infrastructure' is the first sentence, whereís the rest of the paragraph, whereís the beef?

Iíll leave it to the true blue Republicans to speak to their candidates.  It is tempting to cross over and find a couple plums.  There are glimpses of good folks there, but Iím not attached, and involved, and informed enough about them to make those choices and promote them.  But I left them a couple open slots on my ballot.