Helm Is Out
Ed Helm (see photo), the now former chair of the Pinellas County Democratic Executive Committee (DEC) was voted out on Wednesday, December 13. He was replaced by teacher Toni Molinario.
Helm, a former mayoral candidate in St. Petersburg, was popular among progressives. However, as chair, he had difficulty navigating the waters. A PAC managed by his wife was accused of campaign finance violations, the state party withheld funds from the Pinellas DEC after Helm was accused of improperly taking sides in Democratic primaries, and candidates and elected officials visibly gave Helm and the DEC a wide berth.
"History tells us that a house divided against itself cannot stand," Pinellas County Commissioner Ken Welch told the attendees. "Elected officials have avoided the DEC because of its circus atmosphere. The current leadership has fractured us, divided us. It is time for a change."