LOOKING BACK

My message to candidate Cordray: 'You're welcome!'

LARRY BOWERS
Posted 5/13/18

My columns are usually about events, people and happenings of the past, and memorable situations in my life and career. Today, I'm looking ahead, after a very memorable week.I've become involved in …

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LOOKING BACK

My message to candidate Cordray: 'You're welcome!'

Posted

My columns are usually about events, people and happenings of the past, and memorable situations in my life and career. Today, I'm looking ahead, after a very memorable week.

I've become involved in politics, and closely connected to this year's election!

Most realize I'm no huge fan of social media. I use email because it's necessary in communicating with the general public and my journalistic contacts.

But, I haven't really tested the waters of Facebook, Twitter or other social avenues. After this week, I may have to expand a little.

It seems I'm only a step away from the governor's office. Not in Tennessee, but in Ohio. 

For more than a year, I "apparently" have been instrumental in the success of Democratic  gubernatorial candidate Richard Cordray. At least, that's what social media claims. And, we're winning!

Cordray contacted me (via email) following Tuesday's primary victory over former congressman and presidential hopeful Dennis Kucinich. 

Cordray, former head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau under former President Obama, will now face Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine for the governor's office. DeWine defeated Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor Tuesday.

My association with Cordray's campaign  developed over the last several months — through social media. Surprisingly, my involvement has become a continuing odyssey of misconceptions from the North, with an absence  of misrepresentations on my part. The campaign  messages came to me, but I have remained unresponsive.

In fact, it has become somewhat enjoyable to track the success of Cordray's campaign, and now, its celebration.

This fantastic journey began months ago when I was solicited for support and assistance in Ohio's gubernatorial race by former candidate Betty Sutton via email. Sutton later stepped aside to become Cordray's partner.

During the changes, the emails from campaign officials kept reaching me. I was invited to rallies, conferences, personal appearances and special events,  all across Ohio. Why not? I was strategically located — the email emphasized — living right here in Cleveland.

I have yet to attend either of the campaign stops, or respond to any of the momentous number of emails.  Some of the events were in fact in Cleveland (the big city one, in Ohio), and I received several pleas to attend as a strong, local supporter.

Campaign workers even contacted me recently, pointing out (by their excellent records) that I hadn't voted yet! Those records showed I hadn't voted, but they have yet to realize where I live.

After the first few months, it was almost like I really was involved in the campaign. There were almost daily  emails from Cordray, Sutton and their campaign advisers.

Cordray shared his thoughts and appreciation with me following Tuesday's primary victory.

His email said, "Wow, Larry, I am forever grateful for everything you did to help us win tonight! It's an honor to be the Democratic nominee, and it's an honor to have the chance to serve as Ohio's governor.

"Betty and I were were on the ballot, but this victory is yours. You demanded an end to divisive politics. You demanded accountability for seven years of single-party rule and failure. You demanded change.

"We hear you and we can't thank you enough. If you keep standing with us, I promise that change will come."

My memory is a little cloudy (concerning the demands I made), but it's nice to be appreciated. Wow, am I proud!

But, as I stopped to catch my breath, I had to give credit where credit was due. It wasn't me, it was social media!

If I really lived in Ohio (in Cleveland as campaign advisors believe), perhaps I would have been a Cordray supporter. Especially now, since we've become such close confidants! 

My contributions were very, very meager, less than anyone in Ohio realizes.

I've enjoyed being a distant observer, and enjoyed being included as a member of Cordray's campaign team. But I was just a social media participant, a venue I seldom travel.

It's been a long, strenuous campaign, and I'm truly fatigued. I even felt I was "almost" there, at times. It amazes me that those involved have yet to realize I live in Tennessee.

To me, this is one of the fallacies of social media ... placing you where you ain't! 

I now wonder if I will be included in the remainder of the campaign. If Cordray loses to DeWine, I'm sure I'll be "socially" disappointed. 

But not to worry. According to social media ... if we lose in Ohio, there's still Cleveland, Ga., Cleveland, Miss., Cleveland, Texas, Cleveland, S.C., Cleveland, Mo., Cleveland, Calif., Cleveland, N.Y., Cleveland, Va., Cleveland, N.M., and other states (more than 20) ... even Mount Cleveland, Alaska. I could be from anywhere ... on social media.

I just know the internet can provide me with other political "connections," where I can idly be involved without any action of my own.

In today's social media, isn't  politics great? 

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