Sunday, June 04, 2006

Convention highlights

Best speakers:

Russ Feingold. I knew I'd love him but I didn't know how much. Biggest applause lines: " It's not just getting the power; it's standing on principle when we have the power." "We have ideas, bold ones. We just have to express them boldly." "Don't be weak and full of fear." "I thought the NSA wiretapping issue was right in the strike zone of what the founding fathers meant by 'high crimes and misdemeanors...." He said that wherever he went, whoever he talked to, whatever the setting, people said the same thing: "When are you guys going to stand up?" After he left the stage, a discussion in my row ensued as to whether his balls are brass or titanium.

Attorney General Stephen Rowe. Even though I'm mad at him for not running against Snowe, I've always liked and respected Rowe for his solid record of achievements and progressive values. But I've never heard him speak the way he did yesterday. He was on fire. He was unbelievably eloquent on loving and supporting the troops, loving this nation, and the myriad ways the Iraq war is wrong. He sounded like he's an anti-Beltway type, too, riffing on polls, pundits, and consultants. He talked about people's hunger for leadership. And he spoke at length on Democratic values, shouting, "Never apologize for our values! Never apologize for being a Democrat!"

Eric Mehnert. Get this man a campaign manager - he's going to need one after next week's primary. He's not a master orator, but he spoke from the heart, without notes, with absolute command and intensity. His themes are fighting injustice and restoring the social contract. He spoke frequently of moral courage. A civil rights attorney, he would absolutely shred Snowe on warrantless wiretapping, habeas corpus, torture, the 750 signing statements....

Best convention achievement:

The impeachment resolution, of course.

Best complete and utter Maine mensch:

Neil Rolde. Historian, legislator, philanthropist, publisher, founder of Seeds of Peace, did I mention also a nice guy with a genuinely unaffected manner? They don't make citizens any better than this. He introduced Feingold.

Best candidate entrance:

Rep. Mike Michaud, on a forklift.

Best excruciating weirdness:

Gubernatorial candidate Chris Miller, who spoke at length (and slowly) about the dire state of the planet, then showed a video of himself making the same points (only slower), then showed another video set "in the future," with outer-space sound effects, while a comedy duo on stage portrayed future Mainers realizing that all of Chris Miller's dire predictions had come true. The audience sat in stunned fascination.


leolabeth said...

O.k., I'm officially over the edge with this political shit. I just got prickly nose, pre-tears in my eyes, from reading about Rowe and Rolde.

I don't think I can thank you enough for all this great information.


leolabeth said...

Hey Alna Dem,
Can you fix the link on your dkos diary? The "here" where it should link here goes to philinmaine's comments page.

People shouldn't miss this great Maine blog.

Alna Dem said...

thanks, will do!

mainefem said...

Glad that *someone* who actually resides in Maine/who is also a delegate live-blogged the convention!

I had a funeral in the family to attend, so am rendered in catching up modality online.

Here are some of jc's "Had Enough" bumpah-stickuuhs.

southarch said...

Perhaps Feingold has one of each. We could of course, do without the idiots at the convention ask a"Point of Order" over and over just to hear themselves talk over the PA.

Look for good things down the road to, with the likes of Ben Dudley, Glenn Cummings and of course, Steve Rowe will still be around. On the distaff side, the young woman from orono and Hnna Pingree could lead the way.

Owl said...

Thanks for these reports, alna dem. Very, very good to see the impeachment resolution flew.

I helped Steve Rowe win his first House campaign in Portland. Good to read of the current fire in his belly!

Alna Dem said...

Thanks, everybody. I'm so gratified at the response this diary and the one over at Kos has gotten - just knowing others are out there fighting and caring is very invigorating.

And I can't wait to see Rowe RUN!

inkadu said...

Hey, alna dem... drop me an e-mail (inkadu at libero dot it); i'd like to talk to you about that DTC website I mentioned on dailykos.


Anonymous said...

Alna Dem:
Great work. I was a delegate at the convention this year and attended the convention in 04. What impressed me the most is the tremendous change in effeciency(?) ...organization(?)....focus! that the party displayed this year.

I think Howard Dean has put this party on the right track.

Also whatever we may have thought of Chris Miller's message, I think we have to give the Dems credit for letting it be said. Also I think Miller deserves some credit for pointing out that there are "limits to growth" and that the task of the future is about extracting efficiencies.

If he were Al Gore his theatrics would probably be much better.

Neil Rolde is a Saint.....RPG