Just how many Center-Left and Left Voters are there in Anderson County
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Sometimes we seem so few.  A small number of people whose vision of an inclusive, caring, and equitable Anderson County seems to be out of step in Trump's America.  So many residents here believe this is a red county with a smattering of blue here and there, mainly in parts of Oak Ridge.  Republicans, confident in their numbers, consider us an annoyance at best and a none-entity at worst.  Are they correct in their belief?

No.  As in many things, they are wrong.  Let's take a look why.  The Democrat National Committee (DNC) has three Voter Analysis companies on retainer which we access on Votebuilder and we also have a "snapshot" of Anderson County voters from a purchase I made from Catalist (another voter analysis company).  These companies use past voter history, survey results, and a host of other "big data" information they can acquire to create voter metrics.  One is partisanship (adherence to a party), another is likelihood of voting in 2018 elections, and yet another is ideological consistency.  Here are the numbers for Anderson County.

First, remember Jim Hackworth garnered 12,126 votes and lost to John Ragan by only 702 votes.  So 12,000ish is our benchmark in 2018.  Since 2012 was a presidential election year, there was a large number of voters.  We are in a non-presidential election year, but need to generate the same number of voters.  Can we?

The DNC's three companies can be abbreviated as DNC Support, TargetSmart, and DCCC Blue.  We have Catalist 2018.  Using just partisanship (0=perfect Republican and 100 = perfect Democrat), the three DNC have all voters from 1 to 100 and I have two Catalist (2017 & 2018) lists.  We will use partisanship scores of 60-100 for this review.

So...here are the numbers (finally).  DNC Support has 7072 voters that fit the parameters above.  DCCC Blue has 8228 voters and TargetSmart has 8213 voters with scores over 60.  Finally, Catalist 2018 has 12,186 individuals with score over 60 that includes both voters and folks are unregistered.

We are having strong voter registration pushes (led by Diane Petrilla) currently to build our voter base.  Meanwhile, if we have the majority of those voters turn out for a mid-term election and if we can get some center-right voters, then we will win.  

Next blog will give the past election numbers to show how all of this is possible. 


It's not a marathon- it is an ultra-marathon!

A saying I hear all the time is, "This (2018 election) is not a sprint, but a marathon".  Not quite.  This is not a marathon, it is an ultra marathon.  Ultra marathons are done over tough, difficult terrain in all sorts of weather.  From extreme heat to bitter cold, these runners/hikers/climbers have to go for longer than the marathon length of 26.219 miles.  The Barkley Marathon, conducted here in Frozen Head State Park, is 100 miles that has a combined total of 67,000 feet of climbing. 

So it is in Anderson County in this time of Trump and his party.  Every day, we are confronted with both the dramatic and the banal nightmares of Trumpism.  At all levels, from the Federal to Tennessee to Anderson County, we are confronted with the realities of an ultra marathon.  Degrading healthcare for many Tennesseans, cutting social services, privatizing education at the expense of public schooling, and enriching the top income percentiles; this relentless race never seems to end.  

Additionally, Trumpism controls the public narrative for many in Anderson County.  So much so, that we are constantly climbing against the headwinds of ignorance, Trump Twitters, and racial animosity.  No wonder we get tired.  I cannot speak for anyone else, but there are certainly times when I am ready to pack it in and resign.

But this is an ultra marathon for the good of all people in Anderson County.  We do not run/climb for ourselves, but for those who surround us.  There are the vulnerable among us who have little resources to climb alone.  There are the disengaged who wonder why the climb is so hard with little to gain despite a good economy.  There are the displaced who came to this country as a child or an adult and now live in fear as they scramble to the top.  There are the minorities who see decades of progress being thrown down the hill by the cold wind of Trumpism.   

This is why we run this difficult course.  Democrats have a better way.  A more compassionate way that will help all people to finish this tough climb and live a better life.  Here in Anderson County, we offer candidates who are willing to put themselves on the line to create a better way for all to thrive.  

Keep running/climbing.  Dig deep and fight the weariness that comes with this rugged 2018 election season. At the end, when we look at what we accomplished and see how we can now help so many others keep on climbing the hard course of life, we can smile with the inner knowledge that our run was well worth the exhausting effort.

Eric KellerComment
The Blue Wave is Here by Eric Keller
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The Blue Wave is here  to wash aside the dead-end politics of Trumpism.  The Women's March and the March For Our Lives were like earthquakes which created tsunamis of activated voters.  They brought new voters now and into the future.  The Blue Wave is smashing into the American political life..

Women have generally favored the Democratic Party historically, but the advent of Trumpism woke many women to the political danger of Republican policies.  The Republican Party is now the Party of Trump and most women in America reject both.  The Women's March revealed to the world their power and the party of Trump felt the ground shift under their feet. Women  are transforming American politics.

The young are now awake and aware of the bankrupt policies of the Trump era.  Most identify with the Democratic Party policies.  The March For Our Lives displayed their new, powerful wave which will shake the foundations of Trumpism to the core.  The ground shakes even more as this wave grows in strength.

The Blue Wave keeps growing.  With the immigrants, with the diversity of America, with the disenfranchised, with the vulnerable, with all ages and with both men & women... this Blue Wave is a tsunami that sweeps Democratic common-sense policies and politicians in the American political life.

Need proof?   Charles E. Cook from the Cook Political Report (gold standard for political ratings) wrote the statement below.

GOP strength persists among those in the Silent Generation, those born between 1928 and 1945, 52 percent of whom identify with or lean toward the GOP—a larger share than a decade ago, Pew notes. The jump-ball group is the baby boomers, born 1946 to 1964, among whom Democrats have a narrow, 48 to 46 percent edge. The Democratic advantage is a bit wider, 5 points, among the Generation X cohort, born 1965-1980, at 48 to 43 percent. But it is the millennial generation that should terrify Republicans: Those born between 1981 and 1996 identified with or leaned toward Democrats by a 27-point margin, 59 to 32 percent. This last group is nothing less than an existential threat to the Republican Party, as the millennials are only going to increase as a proportion of the electorate.
— Cook Political Report, March 30th 2018

And from Pew Research- a noted non-partisan research source...

For decades, women have been more likely than men to identify as Democrats or lean Democratic. But today, a 56% majority of women identify as Democrats or lean Democratic, while 37% affiliate with or lean toward the GOP. The share of women identifying as Democrats or leaning Democratic is up 4 percentage points since 2015 and is at one of its highest points since 1992
— Pew Research, March 2018

The Blue Wave is here.  

Eric KellerComment
May 1st, Republicans, and Trumpism in Anderson County

Early voting for the County Primaries begin on April 11th and end on April 26th.  May 1st is election day.  The County General Election and State/Federal primaries are on August 2nd.  Check your voter registration at https://www.acelect.com/voter-tools/voter-registration/.

There is a very tight race for Anderson County Mayor.   Terry Frank and Steve Emert are both Republicans and both running for Mayor.  There the similarity stops.  Steve Emert is an old-school Republican while Terry Frank follows the Trumpism doctrine.*  Looking at the websites, it is very clear that Emert believes in working with all sides while Frank's record shows more confrontation than compromise.  Since an effective government depends on all sides being able to work together for the betterment of Anderson County citizens, this alone seems to indicate who is worth supporting.

Having said that, hear this.  I encourage all Anderson County voters to vote for Democrats in all elections.  Effective and compassionate government works better with Democrats; it is what we do. If we had a Democrat running for mayor, I am confident we would beat Frank or Emert.  But that is not an option.

We do not have a contested primary race since all of our candidates are unopposed.  As the Anderson County Democratic Party chair, I will vote Democrat.  Others may vote as they are called to do.

I urge everyone, in the 2018 County Primary, to vote for those who are better for this county.  Trumpism must be stopped.  The all or nothing mentality must stop.  Our steep increase in county-funded litigation must stop.  Terry Frank and her party of Trumpism must be stopped.  If we must suffer under a Republican mayor, at least it should be a true Republican.  Simple as that.

* Trumpism as defined in Wikiquote: The triumph of a raw populism, embodied by a shameless demagogue, over both the official establishment and the official ideology of a major political party.

Eric Keller Comments
Top Gun

As an Army guy, I never had the privilege of watching the poetry in motion of flight operations on an actual U.S. Navy aircraft carrier.  The Top Gun opening scene will have to do.  For those who have never seen it, the scene portrays the intricate ballet of sailors as they launch Navy fighters off a carrier and then guide the jets home again.  Since the aircraft carrier is, in essence, a rolling, rocking, and short runway, the Navy pilots absolutely depend on those sailors to keep them safe.  All must work together in total synchronization.

No different with the Anderson County Democratic Party.  As the Blue Wave picks up steam, we are working with numerous volunteers to insure our candidates are launched successfully.  As candidates work day and night on their campaigns, they must be supported by ACDP in operations as intricate as aircraft operations on a Navy carrier.   Knocking on doors, planning & executing events, making calls, manning the headquarters, and registering voters are just a few examples of the coordinated effort we make in electing Democrats.  

It is a long way to August and November.  Setbacks and victories lie ahead of us.  Working as a team, as dedicated as those sailors are in Navy flight operations, will launch our candidates to a victorious conclusion.

Eric Keller Comments
Resist! by Eric Keller
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This will be a tough election.  The Republicans have more money, more outside resources, and sadly control the government at all levels.  They write a public narrative that hides much and then calls those who speak truth "liars".

The truth.  The household median income earner's increase of $35/week will be paid for by our children.  They will lose Social Security/Medicare and thus lose far more than we benefit now.   Already- Trump and Ryan are talking about "reforming" Social Security/Medicare.  Their knives are out. They deliberately threw our children under the bus to get more dollars for their donors. 

Republicans are bankrolled by individuals who contribute millions upon millions to keep the levers of government under their control.  These people not only make it hard for others to climb the ladder, they kick it away.  

Democrats are united in getting the government to work for the common good...to bring the government of the people, by the people, and for the people back to where it belongs.  Democrats are out-spent, out-advertised, and out-gunned by Republican political action committees who only have one main agenda.  Keep the people out of government.  No matter what their speeches might say. 

Resist.  Don't let them get away with that.  We are the Anderson County Democrats.  We are united with our passion and our energy to defeat the egotistical ethos of Trumpism.  We meet hate with love...selfishness with charity...greed with giving.  But we must have the tools to do this.  

We need money to fund our headquarters, to buy advertising, to help our local candidates, and to resist.  Please donate.  Send a check to P.O Box 8085, Oak Ridge, TN 37831 or donate on this website.  We don't need much- but what we need- we really need.

Help us continue to resist.  


Eric KellerComment