Former state representative and current Congressional candidate, Dave Crooks, got the Democratic Party endorsement to challenge incumbent Representative Larry Buschon for the 8th District Congressional seat. In a procedure I have not seen before (though my history watching such things is pretty limited), the 8th District Democratic party chairs caucused and voted for Crooks to be the party’s nominee this year.
The candidates to be the Democratic nominee were Crooks and Patrick Scates, a former aide to Brad Ellsworth. Warrick County Democratic Chairman Terry White had also been a nominee but dropped out earlier this week. Scates and Crooks agreed to let the nomination be decided through a caucus process. Technically, the primary will still go forward and another candidate could file, but in all likelihood this settles the matter.
The idea is to avoid a bruising, expensive primary battle. Typically, I disagree with that common wisdom. My belief is that primaries leave candidates better organized and better tested. However, watching the current GOP Presidential campaigns, that belief is being challenged. Having no direct experience with campaigns, I also have little sense of the financial concerns. So, whatever the political merits of going through with a traditional primary, it might well be that the Democratic nominee was unlikely to have the financial wherewithal to mount both a serious primary campaign and a general campaign against an incumbent.
Personally, I’m happy with the result. I’ve mentioned before that I have had the opportunity to work with Dave when he was in the legislature and was even lucky enough to be on his radio show a couple of years back. He’s a smart, stand up guy who would serve the 8th District well. This is not, by the way, to take anything away from Scates or White with whom I have no experience.