PALM COAST, Fla. (December 14, 2023) – Giving a look behind the curtain of the 2024 election cycle, nationally connected CNN Political Commentator Alice Stewart engaged the audience during her remarks at the December Flagler Tiger Bay Club meeting on Wednesday evening.

Held at the Hammock Dunes Club, the meeting’s casual networking hour was robust and lively with heavy engagement among members and guests who are usually in attendance during their workweek lunch hour.

Opening with U.S. Presidential trivia and fun facts about Flagler Tiger Bay Club members, Stewart deftly pivoted into the evening’s primer on the current campaigns, and impact of debates on the candidates’ standing drew conversation among the tables as Stewart reminded attendees that the Iowa Caucus 2024 is in just 33 days.

Breaking down the basics, Stewart guided candidates on the fundamentals of campaigning identifying electability, likeability, empathy, connectability, and trustworthiness as key components, with examples of challenges previous candidates have faced.

“Candidates have to be able to connect with voters and they can feel it. When you’re out doing door-to-door and you’re talking with them, you are able to show that you connect with them. That’s a really important component of running for office,” advised Stewart, with a number of declared candidates in the room.

“People want to support someone they can trust, at the end of the day.”

Overseen by Second Vice President Marc Dwyer, Stewart fielded questions from Flagler Tiger Bay Club members after the presentation. Southern States Management Group representative Valerie Steger was presented with the coveted Fang & Claw Award for the evening’s best question.

“Do you ever see the United States going towards ranked-choice voting?” asked Steger, sharing her perspective in response to further probing from Stewart.

“I’ve done some research on it and I’d like to see more of it. In at least Florida, you’re Republican or Democrat but if you’re Independent you can’t vote in the primaries, therefore you don’t have a voice,” Steger said.

“I happen to think that’s not a bad concept. I’ve actually done some policies on that. I think it’s a good concept because it allows people to think. You can do outside the box voting and look at candidates more from nonpolitical or nonpartisan viewpoint, and I think that’s something that’s getting a lot more attention,” answered Stewart.

“I know I’m doing some issues with that. I was at a thing in London recently where they were talking about that. It’s certainly an alternative that should be discussed.”

Leading the discussion full circle, Stewart praised the Flagler Tiger Bay Club for the ability to bring members from all perspectives together for civil discourse and to discuss solutions.

“I think the most important thing to take away from this is what they’re doing at Flagler Tiger Bay Club is important. Coming together from different sides of the aisle and agreeing that we can have respectful conversations on the issues and understanding we’re in tense times, whether we’re talking about the economy, or foreign policy, safety or education, and realize the best way to solve these difficult problems is to put our heads together and find a common solution that works for everyone and do what we need to do to serve the people of Florida or this country,” said Stewart, brutally honest about the manipulation behind keeping Americans divided.

“The politics of division doesn’t do anything but generate clicks on social media and fundraise. It doesn’t do anything to serve the people and we need to get back to the politics of inclusion and working together to solve the problems,” she said.

Flagler Tiger Bay Club President Jay Scherr was pleased with the turnout.

“This was a very special and festive evening. Everyone enjoyed great food, wonderful entertainment, engaging conversations, and an excellent presentation by guest speaker Alice Stewart. We thank Alice and all our members and guests for making this a memorable night and a spectacular way to end the year,” said Scherr.

“We invite you to join us at our first luncheon meeting of 2024 on January 24th with guest speaker, Dr. Gloria Bozeman Herndon. We encourage everyone to register early as we expect this event to sell out.”