Is Don Bivens running for re-election for Democratic Party chair? He’s been a bit vague about it, saying he’d run if people want him to. When he was first elected, it was seen as Terry Goddard’s assertion of authority over the party in preparation for his run for governor. With Goddard not being elected and after a particularly poisionous election cycle, why would he stick around?
Despite the poor results, the party was actually well organized in this election. This is a far cry from the ’08 election, where candidates and party activists had a litany of complaints about party staff and the way resources were being allocated. For those that don’t remember, this led to a racous convention where Bivens was temporarilly toppled.
I’ve talked to a few leaders in the Pima County Democratic party that sing the praises of both executive director Luís Heredia and communications director Jennifer Johnson. One Baja Arizona muckety-muck I talked to said that he wouldn’t support any candidate that didn’t pledge to keep Heredia on board.
(Don’t worry, Jennifer, I’m sure he likes you too.)
So, who are these other candidates that would run if Bivens didn’t? Maricopa County Chair Ann Wallack has backed off from earlier noises about running, but could get back into it. I tried to verify rumors of a run by Sen. Kyrsten Sinema last week, but all she would do was confirm that there were rumors. There is also talk of ex-candidate Penny Kotterman making a go of it.
Notice something here? In my two decades on the state committee, I’ve never seen a woman run for state chair. Heck, the . I can think of two women that served as interim chairs (Peggy Toomey Hamann and, if memory serves, Janet Napolitano) and several women who were powerful leaders in the party but never became chair (Ana Frohmiller, Isabella Greenway and Carolyn Warner, for example). Someone can, no doubt, correct me on this one. Please do.
Other names being circulated include Rodney Glassman (who I rudely interrupted this morning while he was trying to deal with being a brand new father and Air Force Reserve duty) and Andrei Cherny. Many people have mentioned Felecia Rottelini’s name, but people who are close to her have doubts that she is interested.
Keep in mind that Paul Eckerstrom mounted a successful effort to become chair after deciding to run on the drive up to Phoenix. It’s possible for all sorts of names to sufrace between now and then.
The election will be at the state party meeting in January. Tomorrow, the state committee is meeting in Phoenix, so, candidates and possible candidates will no doubt be making noises.
CORRECTION – For some dumb reason, the origninal post refered to Penny Kotterman as “Peggy” and mispelled Andrei Cherny and Felecia Rotellini’s names. The Tucson Citizen regrets the error.
Also, since this post was written, I have confirmed that no woman has ever been elected chair.