Problems For Shelby Co. Democrats As Election Looms - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Problems For Shelby Co. Democrats As Election Looms

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    Friday, October 4 2013 3:43 PM EDT2013-10-04 19:43:45 GMT
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SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. (FOX13) - For Democrats in Shelby County, Thursday was no party. It was a day wasted with time running out.

The arrest of the party chairman and its nominee for county juvenile court clerk turning herself in to the jail for a simple assault charge overshadows the bigger issues with an election less than two months away.

MORE: Carson Gets Tongue-Lashing From Judge For Not Paying Ticket
MORE: Commissioner Brooks Turns Self In At Jail


Instead of meeting with potential donors, plotting strategy for his nominees to win on Aug. 7, party chairman Bryan Carson was in court for not paying an outstanding traffic ticket. He had claimed it was politically motivated.

"It's a traffic ticket," Carson said after appearing in Environmental Court. "I'm not aware of anyone being locked up over a traffic ticket. But, it happened. I want to move forward."

Surrendering at Jail East on a simple assault warrant Thursday evening was retiring County Commissioner Henri Brooks. Once considered a strong contender for clerk of juvenile court, the candidate's temper has made headlines and not good ones.

MORE: Dem. chairman Carson sets record straight about authority
MORE: Shelby Co. Democrats worried about party leadership
MORE: Shelby Co. Dems hope to raise $$ for media blitz


The Democratic Party appears to have issues that might weaken its mission. The party has failed to raise enough money to equal the dollars donated to county Republicans and their media message will be limited to a grassroots campaign.

"We will be going door to door canvassing," Carson said a few weeks ago. "We will be in churches, parking lots, at various stores and shopping centers.

A primary result challenge by one of the Democratic candidates for the county commission district 10 seat provides a slim chance for a novice Republican to win.

"If I am clear in my message  then I think it will resonate with them and I hope it shows up at the ballot box," Diaz said.

Their star candidate, Jude Joe Brown, nominee for district attorney general, has raised less than $1,000 although he promised to loan his campaign plenty of cash.

"It's always good to let people pay for what they're getting," Brown said. "So, they'll get the money whatever they need."

Thursday's developments can only make county Republicans happy. Shelby County GOP Chairman Justin Joy said in a statement to FOX13 News his party is ready.

"Our party has a slate of serious candidates and leaders to address the challenges of the county," Joy said. "(We have a) serious group of leaders ready to step to the plate and the fundraising numbers and grassroots support reflect that. Come election day, that support will play itself out among the voters at-large."

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