Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Pace's DNC Post 8/25/08

WE'VE MOVED! Democratic Convention Watch is now at http://www.DemocraticConventionWatch.com

Today the Democratic Convention officially kicked off. Wow! It was amazing! The day started bright and early with our state delegation meeting at 7 am. There we had an introduction to what our day was going to be like, had some great guest speakers to get us into the mood and received our credentials.

From there it was off to the Convention Center to attend the LGBT caucus. There were some amazing speakers there, including the man who successfully won the case in front of the California Supreme Court that gave gay and lesbian couples the right to marry. He was very inspirational. We also learned that there are 277 "out" LGBT delegates in attendance at this years DNC. That is an increase of 41% from 2004. How incredible! I was very impressed to say the least.

Next we boarded a bus to the Pepsi Center were the actual Convention takes place. We arrived around 4:30 and everything got underway pretty much on schedule by 5 pm. Our Alaskan delegation looked great in our kuspuks (see the photos) other delegations kept stopping by to admire them, they were jealous in their goofy hats :-)

It was interesting how many people stopped us and are asking abut Mark Begich, Ted Stevens, Don Young, Ethan Berkowitz and Diane Benson. Alaska is definitely on the political map! This is a good time for me to remind you all to vote in the primary elections tomorrow (Tuesday the 26th). This is a critical time in Alaska's political future, please get out and express your political voice.

Where was I....the speakers were great, to many to mention but for me the highlights were when Nancy Pelosi spoke, the Young Democrats got up to speak (Ryan Buckholdt a former student of mine was on the stage in his kuspuk...yeah Ryan!), Jesse Jackson Jr., Tom Harkin, Jimmy Carter, and of course Craig and Michelle Obama. For me, Michelle Obama is a breath of fresh air. Listening to the stories of growing up in the south side of Chicago, really touched me. Her father sounded like a truly great man and her mother looked so proud. I am honored to be witnessing this piece of history.

I genuinely appreciated the speakers who spoke about the significance of Senator Hillary Clinton's run for the nomination. When Michelle mentioned the 18 million cracks in the glass ceiling the entire Pepsi Center erupted with applause. Well done!

Tomorrow's tentative schedule includes a meeting with the Women"s caucus, the disability caucus, an event with Nancy Pelosi, Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama. Then more convention activities followed by a Melissa Ethridge/Cyndi Lauper concert. What a day! I say tentative because you never know what might happen, or come up, so stay tuned....