I’ve been reading Daily Kos since 2004, but before now I’ve been content to lurk and leave the occasional comment. Why am I finally writing a diary of my own? Well, this time it’s personal: a close friend of mine is a candidate for elective office, and I know he can do great things if given this opportunity to serve.
Jordan P. Cooper is running for a seat in the House of Delegates in Maryland's 16th District (Bethesda, North Bethesda, Potomac). Tomorrow, May 16, is his first fundraiser. Please consider attending or making a donation.
I’ll discuss why I support Jordan in more detail below.
Jordan and I were classmates in high school. We didn’t go to the same college, but we always made time for each other, and we even ended up living in the same house briefly in the first year after graduation. I know him well, and I know he has the values, integrity, and dedication to serve with distinction.
Although he’s young (he just turned 28), Jordan has done quite a lot in his short life. He’s lived in four continents, worked for a state delegate in Annapolis, and has an advanced degree in health policy from Johns Hopkins, but beyond that, his life been marked by service to his community. Jordan doesn’t believe in down time; whether it’s mentoring at-risk youth, ushering at a theater, or doing whatever it is he did in that rural village in Senegal, Jordan is constantly volunteering his time and energy. He attends community meetings and forums with elected officials and experts of all kinds, not so he can be seen and heard, but to engage and exchange. Thus, he knows what to do and whom to contact to get things in Annapolis.
On the issues, Jordan believes in a progressive agenda: making Obamacare work, continuing to invest in Montgomery County’s great public schools, and improving transit in the suburbs. He’ll strive to foster a broader sense of community among his constituents, and if anyone has an issue in his/her life, Jordan won’t just listen; he’ll advocate for you.
Moreover, Jordan understands the economic struggles of his generation, which manifest themselves in a peculiar way in the 16th District. Millennials simply cannot afford to live in the district unless it’s with their parents, which is all too common among my peers. As a result, Montgomery County is missing out on the influx of young professionals that’s been happening in DC proper and northern Virginia. Jordan will set out to change that.
Jordan will do everything he can to be one of the three winners (yes, there are three winners) of the Democratic primary in June 2014. With the election so far away, he is the first – and, so far, only – declared candidate, and thus has a great opportunity to get a leg up on the field. I’m helping his campaign because it’s personal, but also because Jordan will personalize the campaign for the entire 120,000-strong district. He will knock on every door, read every email, respond to every question, and run his campaign like he’s lived his life: by serving the community with integrity.