UPDATE: The address list for this campaign has been completed.
Campaign #190 is for Mary Egler in GA
The Democrat we’re supporting in our 190th postcarding campaign has a story as interesting as she is persistent. This grandmother and former Republican is in a deep red part of Georgia. She’s run before. Most recently in 2019 as the Democratic nominee for a State House Special Election.
When I spoke to her about why she switched parties, she explained how it worked in her neck of the woods. With so many Republicans, a Democrat couldn’t get elected. She wanted so badly to get into office to make things right for working families, she filed as a Republican when she first ran for office.
But, after Trump, like so many others, she couldn’t bring herself to run again under that label. She decided to run as a Democrat. Not because the area had seen a shift to blue and it was politically expedient. The area was still not friendly to Democratic candidates. She ran as a Democrat because she didn’t wanted her grandkids to think she was in the same Party as Trump.
We’re all doing this work to get our own Democratic voters out to the polls in greater number more often. Others on our side work tirelessly to persuade people who don’t readily identify as Democrats. It’s a good thing to see Republicans realize that they’re in the wrong Party. We should welcome people who take the bold step to embrace the “Democrat” label.
Still, I spoke with Mary at length so that I could be comfortable without a shadow of a doubt that she’s as “blue” as me and you. (Or at least close enough for that part of Georgia, right?)
Mary’s in the February Special Election to fill the vacancy created when the long-time Republican State Senator died. It was scheduled quickly leaving very little time for people to campaign. Hardly anyone is aware there’s an election.
That’s where you and your fun, friendly election reminder postcards come in. If every voter, no matter their political affiliation, is unaware of this February 4 special election, then it really can be about turnout to either earn Mary a win or a spot in the runoff since there are two Republicans battling it out.
In her own words about one of her earlier runs for office for County Commissioner
“I remember when I worked with the Census in 2010. The county was going to build a fire station in Smithville. The closer it came to qualifying time and no one was stepping up to file to run against the incumbent county commissioner, the fire station construction stalled. So, I told someone who I knew would make sure the incumbent knew that I was going to run. They started the fire station work. I didn’t qualify because I worked with the federal government and would lose my job, which I needed since I was a widow. So, after the qualifying deadline passed and no one else had qualified, the recent brief progress on the fire station stopped. After two weeks I went out collected signatures and to qualify as an independent. Needless to say, the fire station was finally completed. It was furnished and dedicated by the commissioner against whom I was running. I didn’t win that election. But I did win for the people of Smithville because they got the fire station that was promised by Lee County for almost 20 years.”
Mary may not be the “poster candidate” you would expect from Central Casting. But she is the kind of fighter I would want on my side. She’s got the drive, the nerve, and the heart to get the good ol’ boy network’s attention. I think that if elected, Mary would be an agent of change in the Georgia State Senate.
You can decide for yourself how many (or how few) addresses to request. If you want to write just five and stop, that’s fine. It’s a tough district for a Democrat and I want to be fully transparent about her chances. Like I have said before, Special Election turnout can be disappointingly low. With two Republicans on the same jungle primary ballot, there’s a possibility they could split the Republican vote. We’re going to write every Democrat who can vote for her. Your prediction is as good as mine. All I know is that when someone like Mary goes out on a limb for all the right reasons, other Democrats should lend some measure of support. Otherwise, what’s the message being sent to others watching who might be terrific Democratic candidates for other positions?
Let’s make Mary’s grandkids proud to see all of our postcards encouraging the strongest turnout the district has ever seen.
Write on! ~Tony The Democrat
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