I am going to level with you, Dear Reader. I have not yet voted for once and current U.S. Representative Kweisi Mfume (MD-7). I was a Michigan resident during his first terms in Congress, listening to contemporary artists such as Terence Trent D’Arby, Johnny Hates Jazz, and Pebbles.
Fast forward to 2020, I voted for Jill Carter in both the special and June primaries. In the special general election, I wrote in a name. I just couldn’t bring myself to cast a ballot for Mr. Mfume for several reasons (too much “Yesterday,” being insufficiently progressive on health care and other issues, and…).
While the Fightin’ 7th is a Safe Democratic seat, and I certainly am not voting for the Republican nominee, be it Kimberly Klacik or whoever else the GOP electorate decides to put up as their standard-bearer, I am not yet on Team Mfume.
If you feel similarly, the June ballot is a perfect time to express your discomfort with the direction of the Democratic Party. Will Mfume do a capable job as a legislator, filling out the remainder of Congressman Elijah Cummings’ term? Most likely. Does he deserve a full term of his own? That is up for you to decide.
Mfume garnered 43% of the vote in the special primary election, held before COVID-19 dominated the U.S. headlines and our lives. Quick math, that means 57% of the Democratic primary vote went for other candidates.
I strongly encourage you to vote for another, more future-oriented choice. For me, it was and is Jill Carter. I can also understand a vote for Dr. Maya Rockeymoore Cummings although, in order to defeat Mfume in a primary, the opposition should be united behind one candidate.
Mfume may win again in June, but a healthy protest vote may encourage him to re-think his policy stances on certain issues…and realize that the Democratic Party of 2020 is far different than the Democratic Party of the early ‘90s. Looking at his campaign literature, featuring a photograph of a younger Mfume standing next to a younger Bill Clinton, I don’t know if he recognizes that yet.