Anti-social media and the race for Democratic Party chair

With the retirement of Texas Democratic Party chairman Boyd Richie, there’s a race on for state Party Chairman. Most people think the race is a lock, and that former Cameron County Judge Gilberto Hinojosa is set to win.

And, fair enough. Of those running, there’s no question in my mind he’s the best choice to provide leadership for the Democrats. It isn’t even a close call. His opponents are Rachel Van Os and Fidel Acevedo.

But isn’t one of the biggest challenges ahead for Democrats to communicate Democratic values to potential supporters? And isn’t social media among the best affordable opportunities to communicate with people on a continuing basis?

If all that is true, whoever the next Democratic leader will be has a big learning curve ahead, if either candidate’s commitment to Twitter is any indication.

Here’s the situation with Rachel Van Os on Twitter:

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I would have loved to contrast that to Gilberto Hinojosa’s twitter account stats. It’s just that I can’t find him on Twitter. There’s no indication he has a twitter account at all.

To be fair, current Chairman Boyd Richie (who won his election before Twitter was widely-used) doesn’t seem to be on Twitter either, but under his leadership the Democratic Party has built a significant presence there, and they have hundreds more following them than the Republican Party of Texas.

Clearly Twitter isn’t everything, but nobody could credibly argue that it isn’t an important communications tool to many segments of an electorate. One would think that candidates for Party Chairman attempting to convince Democrats of their commitment to communicating to Texas voters might have noticed that.

I shot an email to Judge Hinojosa’s campaign to ask if he’s hiding a Twitter account somewhere; I’ll update this piece if I hear back (UPDATE: I heard back – he doesn’t have one). But meanwhile, sheesh.

Update #2: I am informed via the comments section (thanks, comments section!) that there is a third candidate in the race: Fidel Acevedo. I’d seen in earlier news that he had filed, but had also read that there had been questions about whether his was a valid filing, and incorrectly assumed that his candidacy had gone away. Apparently wrong about that, I present his Twitter stats as well:

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So there you have it: all candidates for Democratic Party Chair have a combined grand total of 20 followers. What could possibly go wrong?



4 Responses to Anti-social media and the race for Democratic Party chair

  1. Anonymous May 17, 2012 at 3:25 pm #

    I’ve been getting facebook ads for another man who is running – but can’t remember his name. Oops!

  2. PDiddie, aka Perry Hussein Dorrell May 17, 2012 at 4:37 pm #

    Fidel Acevedo.

  3. Harold Cook May 17, 2012 at 5:53 pm #

    PD, thanks for that heads up! I’ve updated the piece.

  4. Vince May 18, 2012 at 3:05 am #

    What I wanna know is which candidates for Party Chair are on Pintrest. Now, I’ve been *told* Pintrest is supposed to be a “social network,” but the times I’ve visited over there, all I’ve seen are leopard print mixers, jewelry, and prom dresses. It looks a lot less like a “social network” than a 13-year-old’s bedroom wall (maybe that’s the beauty of it, I don’t know), but I would really like to know which candidates—not just or Party Chair, but for everything—are on this evidently new-ish fad.

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