Revisiting Saturday's SCDP Convention

“I thought you said it’d be close!” he said. “What happened?”

That was the response of Harold Ford Jr. after being told that David Cocke, member of the Ford camp and former two-time chair of the Shelby County Democratic Party Executive Committee, had been defeated in his bid to become the new party chair. Can you say surprise, Hal? Sure you can. Say it with me. SUR-PRISE!

The runaway winner in the chairman’s race had been youthful activist Matt Kuhn, the beneficiary of an ad hoc alliance between a host of newly active Democrats who called themselves “the convention Coalition,” and an established bloc of Democrats – alternately called the Herenton faction, after Memphis mayor Willie Herenton, or the Chism faction, after political broker and Herenton confidante Sidney Chism. The latter group had vied for power with Ford’s own wing of the party for more than a decade.

If that wasn’t bad enough, State Senator Rosalind Kurita attended. Kurita is running against Hal Jr. for Bill Frist’s U.S. Senate seat. As if, you didn’t know. Kurita showed up and spoke on Hal Jr.’s turf. Can you say counting coup? The lady’s got balls; big brass ones.

Go read Jackson Baker’s Memphis Flyer article to get the full story.


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