I’m tired, and it’s late, so this will be a short post, but I just got back from the Jefferson-Jackson dinner in Indianapolis. It was like a 7-fer for a political junkie: Evan Bayh, Lee Hamilton, Jill Long Thompson, Jim Schellinger, Hilllary Clinton, Barack Obama, and, my favorite, Howard Dean. One of my favorite lines of the night was from him, saying something to the effect of, maybe if we were keeping the money we were spending in Iraq here at home, we wouldn’t have to sell off our highways.
I was surprised at how many names I recognized on name tags. I guess if you consume the vast amount of state political media that I do, names will eventually seep in. I was particularly happy to see Dave Crooks again. He was just always very pleasant to me when I was a rookie staffer at the Legislative Services Agency. I also exchanged a few words with Baron Hill, Joe Donnelly, Russ Stilwell, and the brother and father of Michael Montagno.
My name tag was misspelled “Mason” instead of “Masson,” but even that was a little funny since the woman who handed me my name tag recognized my name from the blog and apologized for the typo. On a number of occasions, folks would indicate some familiarity with this site, and it was always vaguely surprising. I went with “T” who comments in these parts. His wife accused me of blushing whenever someone would mention the site. I’m not sure I went that far, but I’m a little self-deprecating by nature; so, I’m never quite sure how to handle the odd compliment.
Anyway, it was a lot of fun. Hopefully Amy can salvage some of the pictures I took. I suspect most of them are backs of heads and a speck of a speaker off in the distance.
Update Not much of an update, but I noticed that I forgot to thank Chris Coyle with Indiana Progressives who got me a ticket to the dinner.
Hoosier 1st says
Dang– I missed meeting ya again. But like you I was awed by such people as O’Bannon and Kernan… and so MANY state Reps. I was at the Tipp Co Dems table, but kept wandering off so much that they refused to give me my dinner til I went over and practically ripped it out of a server’s hand. Nah.. but that sounds more dramatic.
Being a political dilettante (and a cheapskate one at that), I stayed home last evening. Still, it’s been fun reading up on the evening’s fun & games.
Sure, T’s wife got an invite, but not me!
Hoosier 1st says
Hey Doug, how significant do you think it is that Tippecanoe County had 11,000 votes cast as of the end of polling on Sunday? The Clerk has stated that they expect around 30,000 total in the primary.
I couldn’t say, Hoosier1st — I just haven’t looked at the numbers prior to this election to compare. If I had to guess, I’d say that bodes a bit better for Obama since I think I’ve seen him pushing harder for his supporters to get out and vote early than I’ve seen from the Clinton campaign. But, that’s purely anecdotal. And, it runs contrary to my general expectation that Clinton will win Indiana by 2 or 3%.
If we believe TV the political pundits, NC and IN are ‘trending CLinton’,but it’s not clear what that means.
I’m kind of curious about what McCain’s numbers will be…
Hoosier 1st says
I’m gonna go out on a limb here and predict that in Tippecanoe County we’ll see over 30,000 votes, with around 8,000 Republicans and the rest Dems. It will shock the be-jezus out of the Republican Party.
I’ll also wager that Graham wins against Meade and that it will be Vernon, Basham and Murtaugh in the contested county races for the Reps.
What an exciting event, I’ll admit to a little envy Doug!
I’m still hopeful for an Obama win in Indiana, because I’m guessing Obama supporters are more highly motivated than Clinton supporters.
More than anything, I’m wondering what the long term effect will be on the Rep/Dem balance. I predict that about a third of the Republicans who cross over for this election will stay. That would be big.
Hey–just back from the dinner. What a great time. The food was pretty dreadful (it’s been good in the past).
Doug hit on some of the highlights. A minor lowlight was being right in the front row of the receiving line, only to have Sen. Obama head to the other side instead. Emma and I wandered off for one of our few near-misses of Howard Dean, only to later see people ten-deep where we had been standing. Emma took the miss of the Obama handshake in stride.
We then retired to another part of the room to compare notes with our Tell City cohorts. They reported that although we had all clapped polititely (or kept our snide comments to a whisper) during Sen. Clinton’s speech, some Clintonites were heckling Obama from the distant left side of the ballroom. The funniest one comment that gave us such joy over beers was when Obama pointed out that the gas-tax holiday would save the average family $28 over three months. Their insightful commentary was, “We’ll TAKE what we can GET!” Whoo hoo, go democracy!
Missing the Obama handshake, we exited the building. There were a couple of motorcoaches outside which Emma assumed were for supporters, but seeing a couple of women with cameras who I had seen earlier enjoying considerable access, I figured them to be the press pool buses. So I looked up in the window at one as we walked by, just in time to see Richard Wolffe, Newsweek Senior White House Correspondent and MSNBC Countdown contributer (ok, maybe I’m letting my newsgeekiness show by knowing this). So I gave a wave and others of the press got the guy’s attention.
My wife is simply head over heels for Richard Wolffe. Whether it’s his intelligence, or the British accent, or his proximity to politics, she just thinks he’s the hottest guy. He’s passed Bill Clinton by. So she’s *way* excited. The other press folks were amused as hell that Mr. Wolffe has a *big* fan, and made way for him to come off the bus and meet us. Emma got a hug and a picture, and we chatted for a few minutes about politics and he was just the most genuinely nice guy, and obviously more than a bit flattered and self-conscious as some of his colleagues documented the interaction. It was by far the highlight of the evening for Emma, and for the rest of us to see her so excited was a joy also.
You’re just back? Now, after 1PM on Monday? Dude, where’s your car? ;)
You are a newsgeek. But, I’m glad your wife got to meet her fave reporter. Always fun for you and them.
I stayed over in Indy, woke up late, stopped for Thai food in New Albany, walked the dogs, and generally took my sweet time. Now I’m trying to see a whole day’s schedule in 3.5 hours, paying the piper so to speak.