So the process has begun. I've thought about - and been approached about - making a run for Jackson county commissioner.
I met Saturday with Judy Dupuis, a former city council member and local Democrat leader, as well as Travis Fojtasek, the president of Recycling Jackson and many other organizations around Jackson. It was just a lunch discussion - I had mentioned to Travis that someday I'd like to get involved in politics, and he was nice enough to set up a meeting.
Democrats in Michigan are working very hard to elect local Dems to county and city positions. Jackson is a Republican stronghold (the city touts itself as the "birthplace" of the party) and local elections are almost always gauranteed to go to a GOP candidate.
Maybe not for much longer, however.
I came into the lunch meeting pretty green. I don't know that much about county politics, I'm not familiar with the who's-who among Jackson politicos, and I was really anxious about how much time being a county commissioner would take up. I like my "me" time, and I'm pretty selfish about giving any of it up.
The election, it seems, would take up most of my time. After that, Travis said, I could give as much time as I wanted to the commissioner's spot.
If you know me, you know I like campaigning. I get a big kick out of meeting new people, advertising my goals, having some fun with posters and printed materials, and just getting out there and shaking hands. That's what I'm good at, and it's what I enjoy.
But there's the "after the election" part, and that's what I'll be learning more about in the weeks to come. Meeting current commissioners, attending a county meeting, introducing myself to the local Dems. There's much to be done.
At one point, Judy asked me, "So, you have some people for your team in mind, don't you?"
Uh...sure, Judy. I've been on top of that all along. Or not.
I've certainly got a lot of thinking to do. After I meet with folks, and attend some meetings, and get a better feeling of the situation, I'll be making a decision about whether to run or not.
A big question: am I needed? Too many politicians get involved in government because they have an agenda or a certain slant on things that they want to bring to the table. I feel that there should be some need that I could fill before I would run. I need to be asked. Judy said my youth and enthusiasm could be a big help, and so I felt a little better about running.
This is big-time stuff here, folks. Sometimes I think my whole life has led up to something like this. What on Earth am I more passionate about that politics? Not much. This could open a lot of doors. Or it could be a big waste of time.
Who knows for sure?
...and hey, if you have a great slogan idea, be sure to pass it my way. Campaigning is the fun part, and I'd love to get friends involved (if they're interested). I've already had a friend or two say, "Should you run, I want to help."
Well, the chance may be coming soon.
Should I do it? Stay posted.