The Lauderdale County Democratic Executive Committee on Thursday met to hear from a defeated candidate in the Aug. 7 primary. Gerald Hudson lost a close very race for District 4 supervisor to incumbent Joe Norwood. Norwood led by 19 votes.
But it was surprising twist of events. The candidate who brought the challenge was terribly late.
The meeting was scheduled to start at 5 p.m. By 5:30 p.m., all party officials were present, but there was no sign of the candidate. Five minutes later, the meeting was adjourned.
Officials say a letter was sent to both candidates, stating the time, date, and location of the meeting. And they assumed at least Hudson would show up since he initiated the meeting in regards to alleged voting discrepancies.
"We met. We discussed the issue, and we decided that since they did not show up that this would be the end of our consideration and we adjourned the meeting," said chair Melba Clark.
But wait. It wasn't over yet. Hudson did arrive, an hour late. But officials allowed Hudson to vent, unofficially, because they already made their decision. But should Hudson get another opportunity?
"I don't think we have any obligation to do this because we've done what he asked us to do," said Clark. "And since he didn't come, unless he had some really justifiable reason for not having come, and I can't see that he would make such a request again."
And Hudson's reason for not showing up?
"I thought the meeting started at 6 o'clock so I'm rolling in here thinking I'm on time," said Hudson. "And obviously I was not because it started at 5."
At this point Hudson had no choice but to concede and said he looks forward to closing this chapter.
"This election, I feel, was a win-win. It's behind me now," said Hudson. "I congratulate Mr. Norwood. This is my hood, my home, my neighborhood. And I'll be right here looking over his shoulders."
Norwood was declared the winner of the District 4 race on Aug. 10 and remains the Democratic nominee. He faces no opposition in November.