Meet Joe

joe_sommer.jpgAs a candidate for Central Committee for Ward 66, I’m eager to support the efforts of Yes We Can - Columbus to make the Franklin County Democratic Party more responsive to people and neighborhoods and less subservient to wealthy corporate interests.

I believe that power in the local party should flow up from the voices and votes of the people and not down in the form of directives from party officials.  I’d like to see the local party be more receptive to candidates wanting to explore people-centered reforms such as adding district representation to City Council, enacting a minimum wage for Columbus, instituting campaign finance reform for city elections, reining in corporate welfare, and bringing back public access TV.   

I’m an attorney who’s retired from Ohio’s state government after 30 years of public service. My concerns about problems in the state government led me to be a member of the state board of the good-government group Common Cause Ohio for many years.

In recent years my interest in issues of the Columbus city government led me to volunteer regularly for the Columbus Coalition for Responsive Government and to serve on the board of the Columbus Compact Corporation, a nonprofit neighborhood developer.

Being on the Central Committee would provide an opportunity to not only advocate for governmental reform but also participate in the discussions and decision-making that lay the groundwork for such reform.