Greer Calls For James To Resign As DTC Chair

In the wake of a blunder that cost the Democratic Party’s endorsed candidates automatic slots on the Sept. 10 primary ballot, one Edgewood activist called on the party’s town chairwoman to resign.

Activist Eli Greer of the Edgewood neighborhood made the call in a text message Thursday to Democratic Town Chairwoman Jackie James.

He sent the message after news broke that the Democratic Town Committee (DTC) missed a filing deadline Wednesday to place the names of endorsed mayoral candidate Toni Harp, city clerk candidate Michael Smart, and 30 aldermanic candidates on the Sept. 10 primary ballot. That means they all must now petition their ways onto the ballot.

“Time for you to resign!!!!” Greer texted James at 4:33 p.m.

James responded by text at 4:46 p.m.: “You have no vote in this. If you contact me again I will call the NHPD!!!!”

Asked later Thursday about the exchange, James said she has no intention of resigning. Two members of the DTC executive board, Gwen Mills and Vinny Mauro Jr., made the error of failing to hand-deliver the paperwork about the endorsed candidates to the city clerk’s office in time, she said.

“I’m not resigning,” she said.

Reached afterwards, Greer called the paperwork error “a colossal mistake. The entire [DTC] board should resign.” He called James’ threat to call the police a reflection of a governing style and “a distraction from taking responsibility as head of the town committee.”

For her part, James accused Greer of intimidating her by contacting by text message rather than seeking to have a productive face-to-face conversation.

“Do not text me or send me bad messages and harass me on cell phones. I pay the bill on my cell phone,” James said. “Do you think he has a right to send me text messages and harass me?”

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posted by: A Contrarian on July 25, 2013  7:45pm

Please call the Keystone Kops.  Can’t wait to see the movie!

posted by: Bill Saunders on July 25, 2013  7:49pm

Well Jackie, your phone number IS published on the home page for the Democratic Town Committee.  Since you didn’t specify a preferred contact method, your blustering is bunk.

Eli Greer is a constituent, right?  You are his servant, not vice versa.

I think it is absolutely hilarious, that when you go to the DTC homepage, there is a prominent list of the IMPORTANT dates pertaining to the election. 

Dont blow the next filing, kids.

The only remedy left after that is the write-in process, at which point we will all clearly hear the faint music of a distant thumb-harp.

posted by: streever on July 25, 2013  7:56pm

Unite Here: This is your inclusive leader. Someone who makes a huge mistake, blames it on others and refuses to take responsibility, and then threatens to call the police when contacted by a dissenter.

Wow. This is, precisely, the transparency and freedom from cronyism that you all worked so hard for.

posted by: Noteworthy on July 25, 2013  7:58pm

This is epic. I agree Jackie James should resign along with the entire board. What has been done is a monumental tsunami of irresponsibility. This board not only cooks the results, but then can’t even deliver the dinner to the right address or on time. Any respectable leader and her minions would take responsibility. But no, Jackie James threatens to call the police over a simple text message. lol, that’s rich. Good luck with getting even a rookie cop to take that call seriously.

P.S. If I had her phone number, I’d call her too and then the NHPD could tell her no twice.

posted by: Wikus van de Merwe on July 25, 2013  8:10pm

Wow, $50 to put fruit on sticks and stick them in a pot?  I’m grateful to Gwen and Vinny’s contribution to democracy, but that’s a little steep.  I’ve still got New Haven taxes to pay…

If my guy wins I’ll splurge.

posted by: robn on July 25, 2013  8:28pm

Lets face it. This group, from James to Mills to Harp and back again to Bob Proto, has no shame whatsoever. Their candidate lives off the largess of tax evasion and preying upon the poor with substandard housing. These is no way James will resign.

posted by: Bill Saunders on July 25, 2013  8:32pm

The person I really feel bad for is Michael Smart.

Though City Clerk isn’t a full time gig,  collecting these 2400 signatures certainly will be…..

posted by: FacChec on July 25, 2013  8:47pm

@ Notes:
“If I had her number I’d call her too”

Here you go…

posted by: Thomas Alfred Paine on July 25, 2013  9:43pm

An Open Letter To Jackie James
Dear Ms. James,
It is time for you to resign. Now please don’t get mad at me and threaten to call the police on me, but you have to go.
What happened under your leadership is a grand disgrace and a humiliating embarrassment to the entire New Haven Democratic party that will be remembered for decades to come. Who has ever in New Haven Democratic party history ever heard of the leadership of the Town Committee ever failing to submit its important paperwork on time? All the work, all the energy, all the time and money put into campaigning by all the candidates to win the endorsement wasted!
Most of us don’t know how you got the chairmanship, but it is very clear that you do not deserve to continue in this post. For the good of the party and all of its candidates, you must step down. So much damage, turmoil and inconvenience from such incompetence warrants your resignation and that of the entire executive board of the Democratic Town Committee. Probably the whole concept of an oligarchic town committee should be eliminated as it is an impediment to true democratic principles.

posted by: wendy1 on July 25, 2013  9:59pm

I find it hilarious that now these candidates and their crews, victims of stupidity, now have to hustle for signatures—not easy in New Haven where most are not informed about the candidates or even registered to vote.  It is HARD WORK getting signatures.  It took me a week to get 100 for the Nov. ballot when I need many more since many are illegible.  But I am kind and merciful and tonight while I was out begging, I signed 3 other signature collections because I want voters to have choices.  G.M. and V.M., shame on you.

posted by: jim1 on July 25, 2013  10:04pm

Maybe next time someone should check up on the DTC!!!!!!!!!!! Just like New Haven to mess this up.

posted by: citoyen on July 25, 2013  10:16pm

I have seen Jackie James in action at a political meeting—she seems knowledgeable about election laws and procedures.

This is a whole different view.  Wow.

I cannot believe the way this city is run.  It seems not to matter WHAT political machine is in charge—whether it’s a DeStefano machine or a union-backed machine, the characteristics are the same: being thin-skinned and vindictive.

Time for a REAL change, New Haven.  This year is our chance.  Really, for the sake of our future, this garbage has got to stop.

posted by: HhE on July 25, 2013  10:25pm

So a text message is more threatening than a face to face?  I never would have guessed.  Then again, my cell phone has text block. 

Ms. James, do you know who had “The buck stops here.” on his desk?  Harry S Trumenn, a Democrat.

I wonder if she is going to call the cops on me now.  Hopefully, AC Reddish will take the call, so we can talk about our projects and such.

posted by: New Haven Taxpayer on July 25, 2013  10:26pm

Thanks for the link Bill!
As a concerned registered Democrat, I just sent Ms James a text telling her I believe she needs to step down too.
I think all concerned Dems should do the same.

posted by: Anderson Scooper on July 25, 2013  10:34pm

Hey, New Haven is starting to resemble Bridgeport!

posted by: DRAD on July 25, 2013  10:40pm

Question:  Is there a recall process to have James, Mauro and Mills removed? 

Maybe when the thousands and thousands of Democrats signing the needed and multiple petitions that place their candidates for mayor and for the alders on the ballot, they can also sign one demanding component, or at least responsible, leadership on the town committee. 

I know this may sound like a touch of hyperbole (it’s really not), but a clear, convincing argument can be made that this expression of gross (and seemingly unrepentant) incompotence effectively disenfranchised many of the most engaged and committed members of the party. 

Yes, it’s so shocking its almost funny, but really how can our party’s leadership expect to be taken seriously whe they can’t deliver on the most absolute and basic of duties. 


posted by: anonymous on July 25, 2013  10:41pm

Start a petition.

posted by: Honest in New Haven on July 25, 2013  10:46pm

Obviously “the buck doesn’t stop” with Jackie James at the DTC.  This is unbelievably embarrassing and if my suspicions are correct, no one on the DTC Executive Committee will be held responsible for this fiasco.  People get fired for screw-ups like this.  In this case, people should resign or be removed from their “volunteer” positions.  This is incompetence at its worst.

posted by: Curious on July 26, 2013  10:41am

Does each candidate have to collect their own signatures, or will the DTC/local 34 machine have people on street corners with sheafs of thirty pages for people to sign?

posted by: Scot on July 26, 2013  12:34pm

It was interesting to read the comments by the DTC head (James) and the RTC head (Elser) who made the exact same mistake, and see how their responses contrasted.

posted by: A Contrarian on July 26, 2013  1:10pm

Scot:  But then again, Rick is “privileged” [bad], a “Yalie” [worse], a “Businessman/Entrepreneur” [revolting], Republican [outrageous], near-four-decade NH resident [still a Carpetbagger], a man [add as many demerits as necessary], and openly-gay long before it was safe & fashionable [well, at least that’s something].

posted by: mrmike1 on July 26, 2013  1:10pm

If Harp wins this election the mistakes and blame throwing will be a regular occurrence at city hall.We just might be hoping Johnny boy was still in office.

posted by: Bill Saunders on July 26, 2013  3:49pm

Mr. Mike,

I venture a guess that if King John was seeking re-election, his micromanagement ‘style’ would have precluded this debacle.