Democrats re­act to Clin­ton’s loss while re­main­ing op­ti­mistic

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By TIF­FANY WAT­SON twat­son@somd­news.com

Nov. 9 was a cel­e­bra­tion for the Repub­li­can Party and a somber day for the Demo­cratic Party and its sup­port­ers. The Democrats won Mary­land but came up short in the na­tional election leav­ing many emo­tion­ally dis­traught and shocked.

On Nov. 8, cit­i­zens ex­er­cised their right to vote in the gen­eral election. The polls closed at

8 p.m. and the out­come landed South­ern Mary­land res­i­dents with Con­gress­man Steny Hoyer (D-Md 5th) and new Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md), a long­time con­gress­man from Mont­gomery County. Demo­crat Hi­lary Clin­ton con­ceded to Repub­li­can Don­ald Trump the fol­low­ing morn­ing af­ter a close race.

“I’m a lit­tle dis­ap­pointed that it turned out the way it did but the peo­ple spoke and we have a lot of fence mend­ing to do and bring- ing folks to­gether in or­der to move for­ward,” said Gil- bert Bowl­ing, chair of the Charles County Demo­cratic Cen­tral Com­mit­tee.

“My heart sank,” said the com­mit­tee’s vice chair, Thomasina Coates. “I kept think­ing about what kind of coun­try we are go­ing to be liv­ing in. It’s just un­for- tu­nate that it didn’t work out na­tion­wide. I have nev- er seen so much de­pres- sion, somber­ness, cry­ing and heartache in an elec- tion. But I have to give it to our folks in Charles Coun- ty be­cause we brought it home. Al­though it wasn’t enough to get her [Clin- ton] elected na­tion­ally, we’re proud of our suc­cess and get­ting our Demo­crat- ic of­fi­cials elected.”

Dur­ing election night Charles County Democrats held a watch party at Sar­tik’s in La Plata to fol­low along as the re­sults came in.

“[The election re­sults] says that the Amer­i­can peo­ple want change,” Bowl­ing said. “Whether or not you agree with the change that they want it warns us to re-eval­u­ate what we as a party have been do­ing and maybe we need to im­prove our rela- tions with a large seg­ment of the com­mu­nity be­cause they didn’t feel our can­di­date was wor­thy of be­ing pres­i­dent.”

Com­mit­tee mem­ber Ja­son Henry Sr. of Chi- ca­muxen said he is now wor­ried af­ter hear­ing the election re­sults.

“Some­one in that po­si­tion should have a lit­tle diplomacy and that needs to be what kind of leader peo­ple seek, but in­di­vid­u­als in this coun­try want- ed change, they want- ed some­one out­side of that,” Henry said. “What [Trump] can do is yet to be seen be­cause he has no ex­pe­ri­ence in pub­lic of­fice. I think mid­dle class white Amer­ica voted. The peo­ple who sup­port- ed him and his rhetoric spoke about tak­ing this coun­try back and mak­ing it great again.”

The com­mit­tee agreed that they would like to see Trump de­nounce the di­vi­sion that has oc­curred in the coun­try dur­ing the election and hopes that the new pres­i­dent-elect will bring back ci­vil­ity.

en­gaged in this coun- try be­cause ap­par­ently peo­ple wrote [Trump] off and by writ­ing him off he pulled out this up­set. Peo­ple don’t know what’s go­ing on in their own back­yard and this coun­try needs to be­come en­gaged. We also need to hold him to task just like the Repub­li­can Party held Pres­i­dent Obama to task.”

Bowl­ing said Ameri- cans now have to come to­gether and work for the bet­ter­ment of the coun­try, not just the bet­ter­ment of a se­lect group. He hopes that Trump ful­fills the “He cre­ated chaos, so prom­ises he made in to hum­ble that is go­ing re­gards to bring­ing the to take a lot,” Coates said. peo­ple to­gether as one, “I hope the show­man­ship and that Trump is will­ing that went on dur­ing the to reach across the aisle cam­paign was just show- and in­clude both par­ties’ man­ship and I hope that views in or­der to do the he would now re­al­ize that right thing for the Ameri- the hard work is just be- can peo­ple. gin­ning.” Charles County Dem-

The com­mit­tee has seen ocrats were more than its party ac­com­plish some pleased with their party’s ma­jor firsts in his­tory win in Mary­land, as most — elect­ing the first Afri- of the state voted in fa­vor can-Amer­i­can pres­i­dent, of Van Hollen for Se­nate two-ter­mer Pres­i­dent and re­turn­ing Hoyer to Barack Obama. Clin­ton the House of Rep­re­senta- would have been the first tives. fe­male pres­i­dent, a his­tor“We knew that we had ical page still left blank. two strong can­di­dates and

“This is a back­lash of we were very con­fi­dent the Demo­cratic Party be- that we were go­ing to win cause women are con­sid- those and we look for ward ered mi­nori­ties,” Henry to both of them serv­ing said. “They still do not re- — one in Con­gress, one ceive equal pay so it is key in the Se­nate,” Bowl­ing for ev­ery­one to be­come said. “I hope they fo­cus on job cre­ation in South­ern Mary­land, help­ing with trans­porta­tion woes and some of our roads that need im­prove­ment. We would love to have a big em­ployer down here in Charles County that is an op­por­tu­nity for ev­ery­one to make a liv­ing.”

In a re­cent press re­lease Hoyer said, “I will con­tinue to ad­vo­cate for my Make It In Amer­ica plan to en­cour­age in­no­va­tion and en­trepreneur­ship so that we can cre­ate good jobs here at home. I will keep work­ing to en­sure our fed­eral em­ploy­ees re­ceive fair pay and ben­e­fits. I will con­tinue my work to pro­tect the Ch­e­sa­peake Bay, its trib­u­taries, and our environment. I will con­tinue to stand up for our mil­i­tary in­stal­la­tions across the dis­trict, which per­form crit­i­cal na­tional se­cu­rity work and make all of us proud. I will keep fight­ing to make a qual­ity ed­u­ca­tion at all lev­els af­ford­able and ac­ces­si­ble to ev­ery­one. And I will keep push­ing for equal pay for equal work and a higher min­i­mum wage.”

Coates said the Demo­cratic Party knows what the coun­try will now face but en­cour­ages res­i­dents to pull them­selves up by their boot­straps, get through the griev­ing process and keep liv­ing.

STAFF PHOTO BY TIF­FANY WAT­SON

On Nov.8, the Charles County Demo­cratic Cen­tral Com­mit­tee held an election night watch party at Sar­tik’s in La Plata.

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