Posted tagged ‘presidential race’

New York College Democrats Do Battle With Bloomsburg and Bats

October 14, 2008

At  10:00 pm on the night of October  10th a force for great change rolled into the somewhat sleepy  Central Pennsylvania town of  Bloomsburg. Aboard a bus were nearly 40 young men and women from Fordham, Hofstra, NYU, St. John’s University and Binghamton University preparing to battle for Democratic votes  in this Republican leaning county.  In a last minute decision the day before, I had decided to join their ranks—it was a decision  I will never forget.

The party left Penn Station at quarter to  eight in the evening, but not before a reporter from  WNYC  had appeared as if by magic in the waiting throng to interview several St. John’s University students on why the were crazy enough to  spend their Friday evening doing anything else but studying or going to a house party.  I could feel the tension building as I boarded the bus and we began the odyssey, and thought of how lonely my textbooks must be sitting around waiting for me to come home.

After we stopped for dinner in Columbia, New Jersey, it came over the wire that a committee investigating the Troopergate scandal had determined that Republican Vice Presidential  hopeful Sarah Palin had not violated the law but had misused her power  as Governor of Alaska. To this the freshly fed  army cheered and whistled.  Numerous small  policy debates  and arguments sprung up and then died again as the bus neared its destination.

Sandwiched as if by divine providence between a Starbucks and a Chinese take-out place was the Columbia County Democratic  Campaign Headquarters.  We filed inside the building with our bags to be briefed on the agenda for the following day and were separated into two groups—those who would sleep in  “the barn” and those who would stay in the apartments of some local Obama supporters.

The barn was graciously donated by a man I remember as being named “Olly,”  and was located a few miles out of town. It was a cold, clear night far removed from the snugness of the urban heat effect and many of us—not anticipating the sleeping conditions had come without blankets. After some mattresses were brought down from the storage area above we settled in for some political bedtime stories the content of which is highly classified. After three hours, the groggy party ceased the “puma bashing” and stories of questionable legality came to an unspoken consensus to fall asleep.  Our peaceful slumber however, was not the first priority of the well-fed bat who decided that 3 A.M. was the perfect time for some exercise.  I who was peacefully situated on a bumpy wooden bench next to a fire that always just a little too warm was startled immediately to my feet.  The lights came on and the circus of shrieks and laughter ensued, with one of us enlisting the help of a box spring to corner the blind mammal. Eventually, the bat retreated to a hole in the wall which was reluctantly plugged.

The morning came quick and in the form of hot showers and  complimentary Starbucks and breakfast in town. The groggy lot was briefed again on what issues to expect and were sent to numerous locations throughout Bloomsburg and more rural locations in Columbia County.  The day was long , hot and tiresome, but in the end It was worth it as  2,017 doors were reached, many hundreds of which were person-to-person contacts.  Many people seemed upset about what a Republican administration had done to the United States and were ready to take to the streets themselves to ensure that the next four years wouldn’t be more of the same.  Independents and those who had supported Clinton in the primaries but were on the fence about Obama got the straight dope about the McCain tax cuts for CEOs, and were disgusted to hear that in a time when tens of thousands of people have lost their homes or their jobs, a Presidential candidate had the audacity to propose such a tax plan.

With the bus on its way,  a group of us decided that we weren’t going to leave town without leaving something that would last all the way until November 4th, we marched down to the Republican staging ground and  plastered the  4’ by 8’ McCain/Pailn sign with a nice Obama/Biden sign and took group pictures. We got word that the bus had arrived as we were finishing up our photo shoot, and marched the five blocks back to the bus chanting “Be a part of something great, Obama 08!” and other slogans. Thumbs up from passing cars and smiles from passersby showed that we were well received.  The gods of political theater apparently were not done with us because as we arrived back at Penn Station that night we were greeted by a handful of women  parading  down 31st street with  Democrats for McCain signs. We quickly and efficiently shouted them down and went our ways for the night. Needless to say, we left our mark on Columbia County last weekend and are coming back for more. Come join the madness of Get-Out –The –Vote weekend as we surge into Bloomsburg  for another round of toe-to –toe battle with McSame and company. 

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John McCain’s Campaign can’t Take the Heat

September 2, 2008

Remember a few years ago when John McCain would spend hours at a time sitting on the “Straight Talk Express,” explaining his policies in detail, answering whatever questions reporters had? McCain had a great relationship with the press–they loved him and he loved them back, when they would press him, he would answer and press back. It was refreshing.

Too bad that’s not around anymore. The new John McCain campaign isn’t tough enough to answer some honest questions.

Last night on the CNN program The Election Center, reporter Campbell Brown asked Tucker Bounds, a McCain campaign spokesman, some simple, honest questions about the national security and foreign policy experience of McCain’s running mate, Gov. Sarah Palin. Here’s the exchange: (more…)

Rock the “Boat” – Latino makeover for Rock the Vote

June 17, 2008

Rock the Vote has decided to search for a new Latino tag line through an online poll being conducted at:

http://www.rockthevote.com/en-espanol/

This link and the original blog post at http://blog.rockthevote.com/ was sent to me by their new Political Outreach Director who is heading this initiative.

I see this as a great opportunity for Rock the Vote to use their network and experience in a realm that has been constantly discussed, but seldom tapped.

Is it too little too late?

Clinton to back Obama

June 4, 2008

More news on the democratic primary…. wait no seriously, it’s really over.

Barack Obama has the unofficial nomination of the democratic party. He made a speech yesterday to a roaring crowd of supporters in what could only be described as a rock concert atmosphere.

Senator Hillary Clinton will endorse presumptive democratic nominee Barack Obama on Saturday. According to a New York Times report Howard Wolfson, one of Clinton’s chief campaign strategists said “Senator Clinton will be hosting an event in Washington, D.C., to thank her supporters and express her support for Senator Obama and party unity.”

This comes on the heels of accusations of Hillary being dissonant in a speech to her supporters here in New York City, following the announcement from various media organizations that Senator Obama already had the necessary delegates to clinch the nomination. She sounded defiant by not acknowledging Barack Obama as the nominee and talking about herself. She denounced critics and pundits for never giving her a chance despite them claiming her the next president for all of 2006 and most of 2007. Until a man by the name of Barack Obama started winning in Iowa.

Only adding to what most saw as a belligerent and argumentative speech was Terry McAuliffe’s introduction of Senator Clinton as “the next president of the United States of America.”

It seems that everyone in the Clinton campaign including herself with the exception of a few aides and Terry McAuliffe realized that there was no road to the nomination. The calls from fellow democrats to coalesce behind Obama and unite the party seemed to have finally worked. Howard Dean, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi released a joint statement today recognizing Barack as the nominee. They stopped short of endorsing him, but it leads one to believe if they did so simply to give Hillary a chance to do so first.

So mark your calendars, Saturday June 7th Barack Obama will get the endorsement of Hillary Clinton as she suspends her campaign. It seems as if the party is finally coming together, despite the worst predictions out there.

Now people are asking about the VP spot…. really? It just ended lets give it some time.