Tag Archives: NV-02

Good Candidates Can Win Everywhere! (eg my Hometown!)

( – promoted by SFBrianCL)

I was born and raised in a very catholic, very conservative county. The less evil German equivalent to the Republican Party, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) has run this county continuously for the last 60 odd years raking in election results between 60 and 85% in all towns.

As everywhere, majority parties can get arrogant and complacent. This has been the case in the county of Vechta as well. The CDU is so used to winning that losing never came to mind. Traditionally, the parliamentary district comprised of the counties of Vechta and adjoining Cloppenburg always end up as the district with the best election results for the CDU in all of Germany. That is how conservative this area is.

However, voters in this county – like voters everywhere – aren’t as stupid as many politicians make them out to be. The CDU made some really bad choices when looking for candidates for mayor in several towns in the last few years which has led to the result that as of now only six out of ten towns have a CDU mayor.

Four years ago two towns, Holdorf and Dinklage (birthtown of Cardinal Clemens August Graf von Galen and myself) elected the independent candidates rather than the one of the CDU. In 2004 the city of Vechta elected the former state minister of agriculture Uwe Bartels, the candidate of the Social Democratic Party (of former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder) rather than the CDU candidate. It has to be noted that in all cases the CDU won the majority on the town councils easily.

Last Sunday, the town I was raised in was the fourth town in the county to chose the non CDU candidate. Manuela Honkomp was elected mayor of Steinfeld with 55% of the vote over the CDU candidate. You just have to click on her campaign website and you get an impression of why she won. This website is more professional than the campaign website of quite a few congressional candidates in the US and of a whole load of candidates for state legislatures. And this for a mayoral candidate for a town of 9,400 people! Her opponent didn’t even have a website. And her resume is quite impressive, too. She left the town to go to college and get her master in political science and later chose to come back. Since I’m not registered in Steinfeld anymore I couldn’t vote for her. I certainly would have, if only for the fact that her family hosted an exchange student from Toledo, Ohio last year. Manuela Honkomp was elected the first non CDU mayor of Steinfeld (and also the first female mayor in the entire county!) despite the fact that 70% voted for CDU candidates for the town council in the same election.

What I am trying to say here is that the county of Vechta and especially the town of Steinfeld are far more conservative than say the 2nd Congressional District in Nevada or the 4th Congressional District in California. If Manuela Honkomp can win in Steinfeld, Jill Derby can win in NV-02 and Charlie Brown in CA-04. The voters are smart enough to vote for the better candidates and are willing to cross party lines if they feel it is necessary.

All Jill Derby and Charlie Brown need are the resources. Please consider contributing to these great candidates. Whether you can give $5, $50 or $100, every dollar helps!

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cross posted from Turn Tahoe Blue