By Dick Jurgena
The first thing you should know about me is that I will never be confused with St. Jude, the patron saint of losing causes. I don’t believe in losing, I don’t like losing. And I didn’t take on this job to produce loses. I’m here to win.
Yes, I know the math: Registered Democrats outnumber registered Republicans and Independents in Montgomery County. But I also know that when voters were asked last November if they favored limiting members of the County Council and the County Executive to three terms each, they voted “yes” by 70% to 30%. If registration were predictive of results, term limits should have gone down to defeat as every single one of the affected office holders is a Democrat. But a majority of Democrats joined Republicans and Independents in saying “enough is enough.”
Couple that with the two-thirds of Maryland Democrats who give Republican Governor Larry Hogan their approval in the polls and you again see that party registration is not predictive. The reason is simple: today’s Maryland Democratic Party is not the party of Democratic Governors Harry Hughes or William Donald Schaefer any more than it’s the party of Presidents Jack Kennedy or Bill Clinton on a national level. Held in thrall by special interests and pressure groups, today’s Democrat leaders see voters not as individuals and families but as grievance holders more interested in what sets them apart than what unites them with their neighbors.
Yes, I intend to work hard to turn out the Republican and Independent vote, but I also intend to go after the votes of disaffected Democrats by pointing out our state’s decline in the qual is about adding, not subtracting. I look forward to your help, advice and vote.
Dick Jurgena is the newly elected chairman of the MCGOP. A resident of Montgomery County for more than 40 years, he and his wife Jean owned a small business in Rockville for 33 years and raised two children in Darnestown.