Activity from Democratic Party grows in county

Published 4:28 pm Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Consider it renewed vigor for the Carter County Democratic Party.
The local chapter will hold their Biennial Reorganization Convention of the county party on Saturday, March 25, at 10 a.m. inside the Carter County Courthouse.
Renewed excitement has caught the eye of local party chair Ramon Sanchez-Vinas.
“I’d say it has been a five-fold increase of support compared to the past eight years,” he said Wednesday. “After a historical tough election for democrats, we’re seeing more people get involved and have their voices heard to make a positive impact at the state and national level.”
Kristi Carr, president of the county Democratic Women’s Party, seconded Sanchez-Vinas’ sentiments, noticing an increase of excitement in 2017.
“The Party is extremely energized this year and gained significant momentum in January, doubling attendance compared to recent meetings,” Carr said. “We’re focused, organized and feeling very positive about making great strides on the local and state front elections.
“There is excitement and much more involvement from individuals in the area and across the country,” she continued. “Each month we continue to see new faces who haven’t been actively involved. We have exciting things going on.”
Saturday’s event is also serving as an open call for local individuals to get involved and continue to make impacts within the county for the coming year.
“Whether you are considered a democrat or have democrat-learning values, we’d love to see the courthouse packed Saturday,” Sanchez-Vinas said. “We’re seeing people wanting to get involved with local politics and run for different local offices. Our goal is to get everyone involved to make an impact. This will have to be a grassroots effort from the people and we’re already seeing that.”
Carr added, “the Biennial Reorganization Convention of the Carter County Party is a very important event as we elect new leadership and executive committee members. We encourage every person in the county who votes democrat to attend and get involved.”
The increase of individuals working with the local Democratic Party is following election of Donald Trump as the county’s president. Along with the presidential administration, Sanchez-Vinas added there is concern in the party about the way the state is  heading.
“We have one state representative, (Rep. John Holsclaw, Jr.) who is willing to represent the people and the real issues,” he said, adding the other representatives and lawmakers tend to be more concerned with headline grabbing material, like gun control, gay marriage, rather than focusing on bringing jobs and promoting real positive changes for the state.
It’s been a busy few months for the party, the chair added. While adding that Carter County will succeed with ecotourism, the party is hoping to work along with Project Lorax — a program through the Northeast Tennessee Democrat Resource Center which aims to provide second grade students with copies of Dr. Suess’ “The Lorax”.
“I’m hoping to get to meet with different business leaders in the county to see about helping us have the project in the county to allow second grade students to have the book,” Sanchez-Vinas said. “It has such an important message, whether your Democratic or Republican.”
Along with Project Lorax, the local Democratic Party is continuing their speaker series on April 15 with an informative session talking about the Affordable Care Act and the newly penned Affordable Health Care Act, being referenced as Trumpcare or Ryancare. The event is free and open to the public and will take place at First Presbyterian Church in Elizabethton from 2 to 4 p.m.
For more information, individuals are encouraged to visit the courthouse Saturday, or check out the Carter County Democratic Party Facebook page online. Visit to learn more about contributing to the initiative.

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