The Democrat* Party in Clark County is, at best, flaccid, at worst, inept.
That is not an indictment of the individuals who comprise the party here, just a recognition that the party is a thin specter of what it once was. And the same is mostly true of the party at the state level.
Anyone who denies this proposition is refusing to see the completely lopsided composition of our local and state legislative bodies.
I refuse to refer to the Democrat Party as the Democratic Party as it so often and liberally is. For me, the word ‘democratic’ is an adjective that defines a characterization that does not exist within the confines of the party structure. I believe this was most clearly demonstrated during the 2016 national election when polls demonstrably showed that Bernie Sanders had a much better chance of defeating the Republican candidate than did Hillary Clinton. But the national Democrat Party hierarchy was determined to present her as the most viable candidate.
But make no mistake, the Republican Party operates in exactly the same way and this characteristic cannot, alone, explain winners and losers in political races.
For decades, Democrats overwhelmingly controlled government both here in Clark County and at the state level, and that was not necessarily a good thing because unfettered dominance leads to supercilious and arrogance, both of which are showing up in the deliberations of members of the legislative bodies.
After fifty years as a registered Democrat, I eventually changed my voter registration to “other” (there is no “Independent” listing on the voter registration form) because that party, I felt, no longer represented my views, or even cared much about them.
I could never consider becoming a Republican, both because the Democrat Party still espoused most of my views and seemed more willing to address them, and because the Republican Party has not, for decades, represented the ideals for which the Party was organized in the mid-1850s, and which led to the elimination of slavery and the election of Abraham Lincoln.
The upcoming primary elections, especially here in Clark County, promise to be very interesting even though a good many offices are going unchallenged. And here’s another reason to make conclusions about the decline of the Democrat Party here, namely that there are so few Democrats vying for local offices.
The race for County Judge/Executive especially comes to mind. As this is being written, there are four candidates for the Republican position and two for the Democrats. All of the Republican candidates are somewhat known here, having served, or currently serving, in elective office.
The two Democrats running for the position are, apparently, newcomers to the political field, and they will be faced with the added disadvantage of perhaps not having much name recognition, a characteristic which often has a great deal of influence on a political race.
The important thing to remember is what every candidate for every office offers in the way of programs he or she wants to see implemented or continued or expanded here in Clark County.
If there were one question that should be asked of every candidate it would be: “What do you propose to do differently or the same as what is now being done in the office you seek?” That one question would probably reveal more about what a candidate stands for – or against – than any other speech or declaration they could make during a campaign.
*WCN&V generally follows the convention of most style guides, fact-checkers, and the official DNC policy of referring to the party as the “Democratic Party,” but we are leaving this as written by the author because it’s pertinent to the article. [Ed.]