Monday, March 14, 2016

Election season heats up -- and goes green -- in Laramie County

House Minority Leader Mary Throne addresses the "Get Your Green On" Democrats about some of  the Republican craziness that transpired during the most recent legislative session. 
Pat Lauber leads the food line as committee member Ken Trowbridge points out the goodies. 
Ryan Greene's campaign express from Rock Springs stopped at the Laramie County event to do some politicking. and eating. Greene, center, is the only Democrat running for Wyoming's lone U.S. House seat.  
Had a terrific time last night at the Laramie County Democrats’ “Get Your Green On” fund-raiser. Lots of funds raised for 2016 Dem candidates in Laramie County – stay tuned for numbers. This Irish-American never knew that corned beef and cabbage could be so popular. Only leftovers were a few leaves of cabbage and remnants of carrots and potatoes. C’mon Dems, eat your veggies! I noticed you had no problem paying $5 for Katherine Van Dell’s gourmet pina colada cupcakes. Cupcakes are vegetables, right? Each cupcake bought entered an attendee in a 50/50 raffle, won by Phyllis Bloomberg. All for the cause!

The big treat last night was seeing so many new faces ready to sign up and defeat these whackadoodle Republicans embarrassing the state in every legislative session. We also heard from the lone Democrat running for Wyoming’s lone U.S. Houser seat. Ryan Greene is a Rock Springs native and he brought his entourage with him to promote his 23-county get-acquainted tour around the state. Next stop after Cheyenne – a meeting in Lusk with Niobrara County’s flour Democrats. Plenty of room for growth! Greene works in the state’s energy industry and concerned, as we all are, about the downturn in the coal and natural gas industries. Greene is a father of two and a certified pipe welder and promoter of unions, which is fitting for someone from Wyoming’s union stronghold of Sweetwater County. As the candidate notes in his flyer, it’s been 40 years since Wyoming sent a Democrat to Washington, D.C. That was another Sweetwater County favorite son – Tino Roncalio. I met Rep. Roncalio while working on an oral history of the state’s World War II veterans. I also interviewed the very colorful politician for a 30th anniversary booklet for the Wyoming Arts Council. Get more info about Ryan Greene’s campaign at

A few words about the plight of Democrats in Wyoming. As union jobs have been driven from this “Right to Work” state, Democratic Party numbers have dropped precipitously and so has our ability to elect Dems to the legislature. Gerrymandering hasn’t helped either. Our 11 Dems in the legislature are a feisty bunch. Notable is minority leader Rep. Mary Throne. The Gillette native (now Cheyenne resident) brings the same kind of fight to law-making as she did with her recent breast cancer battle. Such passion! She has to run again this year, as our reps have to mix it up on the campaign trail every two years. I’ll be writing more about the campaigns as the political scene begins to heat up this spring and summer.

The Laramie County Democrats Grassroots Coalition does some amazing work. Our six-member fund-raising committee has put together some great events this past year. This group raised $10,000 for county candidates in 2012. Our goal this year is $15,000. We are two-thirds of the way there. If you wish to be part of the effort without the bother of eating cupcakes, donate at If you want to do your bit by eating and making merry at a FUNdraiser, pencil in May 7 on your calendar. This is Dem Derby Day in Wyoming. We expect a big crowd of concerned citizens to gamble and drink mint juleps for a good cause. We also hope for nice weather, but a little bit of spring snow and wind has never stopped us before. To keep up to date, read this blog and visit the keen Laramie County Democrats web site. The site is maintained by Hawai'i native Shayna Lonoaea Alexander.  She brought her considerable skills to Cheyenne when she heard that the surf in Cheyenne is bitchin’ and there are more Democrats in Laramie County than on Maui. OK, so she was misinformed. But we love it that she made it to the Equality State.

And start getting your outfit ready for Derby Day. Big, floppy hats! Fancy dresses! Warm and fuzzy feelings all over!

No comments: