Monday, June 9, 2014

A win for Landau; a setback for open politics?

Congratulations to David Landau.

He turned back an in-party challenge and won another term as leader of the Delaware County Democratic Party.

The party has been on a bit of a roll under Landau, making inroads in Upper Darby and other towns, while knocking the powerful Delco GOP off their perch of longtime majority party with an overwhelming edge in voter registration. There are now more registered Democrats than Republicans in Delaware County.

That's translated to some municipal wins, but the Dems have yet to dent the bastion of GOP power, the Media Courthouse. Speaking of which, it's interesting that Democrats have for years accused Republicans of closed government, shutting the public out of the behind-the-scenes workings at the courthouse that resulted in all those unanimous 5-0 votes. Where have you gone, Andy Lewis.

So I found it interesting yesterday that the Democrats decided to close their Sunday meeting, keeping the press at bay until after Landau had easily turned back a challenge from Ray Santarelli. The final count was 242-115.

This morning the updated numbers are as follows: 342 people voted, 1 disallowed, 226-115 margin for Landau.

Maybe I'm mistaken, but I don't recall the press being barred from one of these meetings in the past.

Maybe they didn't want to air their dirty laundry as Landau faced a challenge from inside his own house.

There had been some heated words exchanged in the primary. In particular, state Rep. Margo Davidson, D-164, was unhappy with party leaders for the challenge she faced from two fellow Democrats. And she wasn't shy about talking about it.

After claiming victory, she turned her guns on Landay, Bryan Lentz and others she felt responsible for the attack on her. A press conference was quickly announced to announce another challenge, this one to Upper Darby Dems boss Ed Bradley. Santarelli then announced he would challenge Landau.

Landau was diplomatic in victory.

"We're Democrats," he said. "This is going to happen. We don't march in lockstep. We welcome debate."

But apparently not in public.

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