Community organizer Kristin Szakos is running for the Democratic nomination for City Council, Chiara Canzi reports for C-Ville Weekly. Szakos was the volunteer coordinator for the Obama-Biden campaign in Charlottesville, and plans to formally announce her campaign on Saturday. More information about her is available on her campaign website.
Both Mayor David Norris and Vice Mayor Julian Taliaferro are up for reelection at the end of this, their first term. Neither have publicly stated whether they intend to run for another term. Though the general election is in November, the Democrats’ nomination process isn’t yet clear. The party has long held a nomination convention, requiring hundreds of people to pile into a room and remain there through round after round of voting. When there are few candidates (as with the unchallenged Norris and Taliaferro, two years ago), it goes smoothly. But when there are a bunch of candidates (like in 2002), it’s an hours-long process that might make for interesting sport, but it’s hugely unpleasant and not particularly democratic. There’s debate within the party over changing the process this time around, such as moving to something closer to a traditional primary. Since the Democrats just about always win, how the nominees are chosen basically determines who is going to sit on Council.