Friday, April 28, 2023

More Gen Z Progressive Fighters for North Carolina


Drew Kromer, when he received
his law degree at UNC

All we senile Democrats dance a little jig -- holding onto a table for balance, because we may be old but we're not prone to suicide -- that the Mecklenburg County Democratic Convention on Saturday elected 26-year-old Drew Kromer as its new chair, and he's already getting the star treatment with a major profile article by Josh Bergeron that appeared in this morning's News and Observer -- "Drew Kromer wants to 'severely cripple' GOP's chances in NC. Here's how he'll do it." 

Who wouldn't click that link?

Short how-to: "...he’s on a mission to build community connections and Democratic Party enthusiasm in areas with few competitive races."

Kromer's clearly a self-starter. While still a student at Davidson College, he became the Democratic chair of Precinct 206 on the Mecklenburg-Iredell County border. He began organizing "a crew that grew to more than 500 members" and raised an eye-popping $150,000 for the precinct (out-raising the entire Mecklenburg Co. party). His newly energized volunteers "cut their teeth" in Davidson town elections and helped Democrat Christy Clark knock off Republican incumbent John Bradford in House District 98 in 2018. (I covered Christy Clark's campaign extensively that year. But I didn't know about Drew Kromer.) Among other things Kromer is planning, he intends to raise the money to hire an executive director for the county party and "professionalize" the operation. (Drew, can we get lunch? Watauga County might have some tips. We've been "professional" for a dozen years.)

Kromer realized that the great Democratic failure in the 2022 elections was complacency in the most progressive counties like Mecklenburg (and incidentally, Watauga), where Democratic candidates have come to dominate most elections and where local government is controlled by a lopsided Democratic majority. Kromer diagnosed the problem in an email during his campaign for chair: “Democrats easily win the vast majority of our local races. Unfortunately, the more races that Democrats are easily able to win, the fewer local campaigns we need, the less excitement that is generated, and the more complacent we become."

Kromer joins 25-year-old Anderson Clayton, the new chair of the NCDP, in the youth movement to regroup and rearm a Democratic Party that's been drifting into senescence. Josh Bergeron mentions other rising Gen Z and Millennials who took over other county parties at this year's conventions: Mackenzie Reedybacon, Cabarrus; Daniel Quick, Stanly; Michael McLamb, Catawba; Travis Lewis, Jackson; and Parron Baxter, Union.

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