Thursday, June 12, 2008

Denying Undeniable Deniability

This week, I did not pitch for the New York Yankees. And I did not negotiate a peace treaty in the Iraqi civil war.

And this week, I did not run for Chairman of the Hunterdon County Democratic Committee. The only difference is, I never had to deny over and over again the first two activities.

In the weeks since the Hunterdon County Democratic Committee Convention, I was asked on at least a twice a week basis if I were running. Sometimes by fellow Democrats. Sometimes by members of the Republican County Committee Executive Board. Once or twice by those who were supporting a previous candidate for Chairman of the Hunterdon County Democratic Committee. I found the whole thing very amusing. It seems the more I denied it [aka The Truth], the more it became believable. Rock solid. Right up to the day of the election this passed Tuesday.

A few weeks back, at the Hunterdon County Democratic Convention, the executive powers that be nominated and supported former Republican Chris Harcar for Hunterdon County Freeholder. Now, many of my fellow Democrats found that such possibility very abhorrent. After all, Harcar was in the paper almost weekly with her bout and court case against Assemblywoman Marcia Karrow. Other issues marred her candidacy.

There were many [including myself] who did not think she would make the best candidate for freeholder in the fall, and that her candidacy would be a distraction from our local races. We supported Martin Siecke, who won the County Committee endorsement and the nomination. Having been Chairman from 1996 -2000, I know hard it is to find good candidates. So, although we disagreed on Harcar's candidacy, I respect those who found her. Siecke's nomination at the convention was a surprise. And I guess there were those who thought that my candidacy for Chairman was going to be a surprise, also.

All along the way, I denied that I was running. It seems the stronger the denial, the more credible the candidacy became. I was told by a fellow Democratic committeeman, that the fact that there was no organized effort to get me elected, seemed to make those in the Committee think that I must be organizing the whole campaign very stealthfully.

I found the whole thing very amusing. I even received calls from local newspaper reporters and the fine folks from And then my denial became a news story.

And so, the real headline grabber should be for new Hunterdon County Chair Lois Zarish. In politics they tell us that there are 'workhorses' and 'show horses'. Lois is most definitely a hard working Democrat, who has asked for little over the years in return for her hard work. This is her shot to prove what can be borne out of hard work.

My two cents: First on the agenda should be a gathering of the Clinton supporters and Obama supporters to mend the rift. And Mrs. Zarish is the right person for that job.

Note to Chairwoman Zarish: You have the backs of many Democrats for many years. It is time for people in Hunterdon to have yours.

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