Many Nashville Democrats have thrown their support behind Mary Mancini in her campaign to be the next Chair of the Tennessee Democratic Party, including several leading local politicos. The Davidson County Democratic Executive Committee, the governing body for Democrats in Nashville, endorsed Mancini in its November meeting, and State Democratic Party leaders will choose a new chair on January 10.
Mancini has garnered support from many Democratic party leaders, such as Councilman Fabian Bende, Councilman Scott Davis, Councilman Anthony Davis, Council lady and Mayoral Candidate Megan Berry, and Councilman Peter Westerholm, among others.
“I find Mary an exceptional person,” said Councilman Scott Davis. “She is capable of uniting all sides of the Tennessee Democratic Party.”
Gary Bynum, chairman of the Davidson County Democratic Party, said Mancini’s leadership and organizing experience on core Democratic Party values and progressive causes, from rebuilding the middle class to promoting equality, makes her the clear choice to lead Tennessee Democrats.
“Having worked alongside Mary for years, we know that Mary Mancini is exactly the kind of leader that Tennessee Democrats need: she is battle-tested and doesn’t just offer platitudes and talking points, she is ready to hit the ground running on day one to start laying the groundwork to win races across the state in both rural and urban areas,” Bynum said. “Mary Mancini has consistently demonstrated an ability to build progressive coalitions by leading the fight for equality and fairness for Tennesseans, and we know she will be a tireless advocate for all Democrats throughout Tennessee.”
“Now is the time to eliminate what holds us back,” Mancini declared in November in announcing her candidacy. “Now is also the time for our party to create a top-down culture of unity. We must work to engage county parties and move them forward. We must expand our fundraising base. We must motivate, activate and organize strong Democrats all across the state through grassroots organizing. We must recruit candidates who have deep ties to their community, can raise money, and will work hard to win. Most important, now is the time for Democrats to make smart, data-driven decisions.’
Mancini was a candidate for Tennessee State Senate, and prior to campaigning for office, she was the executive director of Tennessee Citizen Action, where she organized large scale voter registration drives, lobbied to stop Governor Haslam and the Republican majority’s attack on hard working men and women of the state, and trained and organized people across the state to advocate on their own behalf.
“Time after time I’ve seen Governor Haslam and Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey blame hard working men and women for all the problems we have in this state,” Mancini continued, “I look forward to using my experience to help build a political party that will put people first and fight on behalf of Tennesseans struggling to make ends meet.”
The election of a new chair is unlike most campaigns because the voting universe is made up of a relatively small body of elected representatives – the 66 members of the TNDP Executive Committee (who are leaders of our party from across the state – one woman and one man elected from each of Tennessee’s 33 state senate districts), the State Senate and State House Caucus Leaders, and one member each from the Tennessee Federation of Democratic Women, the Tennessee Young Democrats, the Tennessee Democratic County Chairs Association, and the Tennessee Federation of College Democrats. The list of these 72 voting members is posted on the TNDP website, as are the 2015 TNDP Chairman Candidates: Terry Adams, Dan Coleman, Matt Kuhn, Mary Mancini, Mark North, and Lenda Sherrell.