"Genius never makes a mistake. All mistakes are volitional and are portals of discovery." -James Joyce
"War is God's way of teaching Americans geography." -Ambrose Bierce
What the Tennessee Democratic Party learns from the 2012 elections will prove our viability as a state party and whether or not our collective heads together constitute the genius required to persuade a few hundred thousand of our friends that we need new stateswomen and statesmen in the US Senate, the Governor's Mansion, and a whole mess of new legislators.
In other Republican states like Texas, Democrats may start winning soon on account of the growing Latino population as described in this lengthy article, but Tennessee won't experience anything of the sort. Gerrymandered districts will provide a clear advantage for Republicans over the next decade. Geography, like a slowly changing demographic, will not achieve statewide victories for Democrats anytime soon either. So, what do we have going for us?
Republicans argue over gun rights that aren't being threatened, tax hikes that aren't being proposed, and education funding that is disappearing before our eyes. Let's invite Tennesseans to our side of history while Republicans continue living inside their own delusions. We have dreams of a free and public education that is fully funded and supported. We require that responsible legislators are open to compromise and not the inflexibility mandated by tax pledges and silly demands from lobbyists. And we believe that every working woman and man deserves a decent wage, the right to organize, and the freedom to get ahead in this economy.
The one thing we can change over the next two years will be how Tennesseans respond to the message of the Tennessee Democratic Party ... if we have one. I'm running for Tennessee Democratic Party Chair because our priority must be getting the talk right in Tennessee. Starting in January, let the next legislative session be a lesson for all of us. Tennessee needs more Democrats.