Thursday, September 04, 2008

St. Paul-ie Girl - RNC Diary

OK that title may be sexist (or is it "sexy"?), but we couldn't resist.  Just too damn clever.  In any case, do you wish you were at the Convention last night?  Well, our man in the Twin Cities was.  Let's hear the latest from Jordan McGrain:

Since Street Sweeper totally stole my idea to feature a running diary ala’s Bill Simmons, I’ve been hesitant to use the method for my convention coverage.  But, these being a big couple days and all, I’ve decided to make it happen.  So, with a tip of the cap to the Sports Guy, here is the gavel-to-gavel coverage of the RNC Day 3, otherwise known as the day Sarah Palin tells her critics to Go Eff Themselves.

6:25 – And we’re live from the Xcel Center in beautiful downtown Minneapolis, with nary a protester in sight!  I’m sure they are laying in wait for the festivities to conclude, where they can then lob bleach, urine, and feces at conventioneers as we exit the building.  Sorta reminds me of my high school graduation in good ole Council Bluffs.

6:40 – Before I forget, I want to promise that my posts will no longer include gratuitous plugs for my new business and website, Just won’t happen.

6:52 – al Jazeera is in the house. Their media suite is the second-worst in the building – they can barely see the speaker’s podium from where they sit.  Only one other media outlet is in worse shape.  Any guesses?  You got it.  MSNBC.

6:58 – Roll Call is reporting that Governor Dave Heineman is on the short list to serve as Secretary of Agriculture in a (now probable) McCain Administration.  That goes to show the level of respect for our Governor in political circles near and far.  In a related story, Lt. Governor Rick Sheehy just fainted and has been rushed to the Emergency Room for fluids and observation.

7:05ish – Former Maryland Lt. Governor (and pal of AG Jon Bruning) Michael Steele has just taken the stage and was given a rousing ovation by the delegation.  I was wandering the third floor of the arena, so I’m not quite sure what he said, but it was probably wicked awesome.

7:15 – And speaking of Nebraska’s Attorney General, some of you may know that I served as campaign manager during his recent bid for United States Senate, guiding him all the way to an early withdrawal in November of 2007.  So, I’m not exactly an unbiased source when it comes to Jon Bruning.

But let me say this; I’ve had the opportunity to travel with Bruning during the convention, and there’s not an event in this town where he doesn’t immediately know half the people in the room.  Elected officials, business leaders, decision makers all know and love the man.  They know and care about Nebraska because they know and respect Jon Bruning.  He’s built a nation-wide network and ultimately, that’s good for Nebraska.  Heineman, Bruning, Treasurer Shane Osborn and Congressman Adrian Smith have been remarkable ambassadors for our state out here.

Think I’ll get any negative feedback for that little ditty?  Nah.

7:35 – I’ve now been told that, as a condition of his early support, Ben Nelson told Barack Obama that Chuck Hagel should not, could not and would not be called to serve in a new democrat administration.  That pretty much solves the Hagel as Secretary of Anything question.  Nelson is also rumored to be interested in the Ag Secretary job which would leave the senate seat ready for appointment.  What a blood bath that process would be.  I know who my money is on.

8:01ish – Standing ovation for Mitt Romney, my original choice for president.  Mitt focuses on the economy and energy – two specialties of his.  His plan for energy conservation includes “keeping Al Gore’s private jet on the ground.”  Republicans, your red meat is served.

8:10 – Mitt is noticeably more comfortable and confident in front of this crowd, his best speech since the last days of the Michigan Primary.  If we had seen this Romney in January, he might be giving the last speech tomorrow night instead.

8:25ish – Mike Huckabee takes the stage.  I’ve heard he’s ticked at me for making fat jokes.  I’m sorry Governor, I kid because I care.

8:32ish – Huckabee on Palin; “I’m so tired of the other side saying she has no experience.  Sarah Palin got more votes for Mayor of Wasilla, Alaska than Joe Biden got for President of the United States.”

Huckabee is good, man.  Obviously Nebraska political guru Jessica Moenning wrote his speech tonight.

8:45 – Do you know that, for the most part, I’ve typed every single word of these daily reports on my BlackBerry?  Take that, Kyle Michaelis!  Not only am I better looking, but I am also a master of the mini-keyboard.  Did that blow your mind?  That just happened.  I know for a fact that NE GOP Treasurer Rod Krogh is impressed, as he should be.

I’m kidding, Kyle.  You are still my favorite wacky, misguided, loony liberal blogger.  Let’s get together soon to share war stories over a mango smoothie.

9:00 – Here comes Rudy.  I’m not sure how to tell you this, but he’s kind of a big deal.  And  I don't feel the need to comment on the next two speeches, since I assume that anyone interested in this blog is probably watching them on Fox News anyway.

9:23 – If this election were to decide on a Smart-Ass in Chief, Rudy would win in a landslide.  I’d like to think that I would be a clear choice for his running mate.

9:28 – Rudy killed it.  I would put his up against any of the speeches from last week that got Stephanopolous all moist.  In fact, Keith Olbermann, confident Rudy would blow it but dismayed at the turn of events, just punched Chris Matthews in the face and pitched him over the side of the MSNBC suite.  Even the al Jazeera guys were horrified.

9:32 – Enter Governor Sarah Palin, stage right.  She’s been on the floor for all of twenty seconds, and I can already tell that the GOP is about to win the unwinnable election in 2008.

10:05 – Palin dazzled ‘em, Olbermann’s head exploded.  News at 11.

10:10ish – As a father of three, including an 8-month old girl, I’m not afraid to say that I got a little misty when Governor Palin grabbed hold of her baby and held him in the middle of the stage as the world looked on.  If it had that impact on me, imagine the impact on my wife, and all the other mothers around the country.

I think we’ve got this thing.  Nice pick, Team McCain.

10:47 – My wife Anna is furious that both MSNBC and, curiously, Chris Wallace of Fox News felt the need to remind folks that a man wrote Sarah Palin’s speech.  Did they mention last week that Obama’s speech was written by a white guy?  My wife feels like the sexism on display vs. Palin is far, far greater than any racism pointed at Barack Obama.  Keep it up, MSM.  You are about to royally piss off every possible swing-voter in this country.

11:30 – There’s no logical segue here, so I’ll just say that we’re now headed to the One Campaign party featuring former American Idol finalist now multi-platinum recording star Chris Daughtry.  Hopefully our progress is not impeded by the 2,000 or so protesters who’ve gathered at the Target Center and have since been tear-gassed by local riot control and the Minnesota SWAT team.

As Carlos Castillo would say, “I don’t think I’ll be making the breakfast in the morning.”

Outstanding post Jordan.  Now just make sure you squeeze in the McCain speech during halftime of Giants-Redskins tonight... 


Howie said...

Sweeper, Jordan's post at 6:25 sounds as though it was written by a junior high student. But, he is a Republican, isn't he? Forgot you guys have your own rules on ehtical behavior....NICE!!!

Anonymous said...

Jessica Moenning is a political guru?

Is that what you get to call yourself when you lose an election by 30 points?

Street Sweeper said...

Apparently you aren't familiar with what the liberal protesters have been doing in the Twin Cites. I thought he was rather easy on them.
Thanks for reading!

macdaddy said...

I won't give you negative feedback for the shameless Bruning plug, but I will give you positive feedback for the Talledega Nights line. Way to appeal to us NASCAR dads. Shake and bake McGrain! Shake...and bake!

Anonymous said...

"(now probable) McCain Administration"

want to set an over under on the point and or electoral college vote spread and make a wager?

Right Wing Professor said...

Jordan, comparing your looks to KM's is like comparing your brain to Barbara Boxer's. You're a GOP'er. Set yourself some real standards, man!

My comment on Palin's speech last night; if I were Obama, I'd wish I was a moose. Sarah gives moose a quick death.

Oracle said...

We all know that Republicans have no hesistation when it comes to lying because their cause is so holy that any tactic toward winning is okay. But last night took the cake. One example is the 8:32 post where Huckabee claimed that Palin got more votes running for mayor of Wasilla than Joe Biden got running for president of the US. AP fact-checked this lie and many other howlers. The truth is Palin got 616 votes in 1995 and 909 in 1999. Joe Biden got 76,165 votes in 23 states and DC. Oh well, we all know that Republicans and low information voters will believe any lie if repeated often enough.

Pipsisewah said...

I was sitting next to a bunch of Christian Conservative women at a coffee shop when I heard them discussing what influence Divine Intervention had in this. They were giddy that God's plan was to possibly have a women as President.

The irony? The two churches most of these women attend don't allow women clergy, women on church boards, or women behind the pulpit under any condition.

It is reassuring to know God allows them to be Presidents, but not pastors.

Anonymous said...

If the Republicans would just shut their piehole on Palin's family and lifestyle, the Democrats would stop talking about it. The Obama camp has said leave the family alone, period. Why can't the Republicans leave it alone. You can't keep scratching a scab off and expect it to heal. I think they want to keep her a martyr til election time. A sympathy vote is still a vote.

macdaddy said...

The carping from the left is so predictable. Yawn.

Ronnie Schlabs said...

OH YEA, the Romney speech was total red meat. He kept using liberal in such a randomly pejorative sense . I honestly thought at one point he was going to say, "I was eating breakfast this morning, and my hash browns were all liberal. I sent them back and told the waitress to bring me some good, conservative hash browns."

asecurityguard said...

Romney must forget that at one point he was more liberal than some "liberals". Running for president will remind you that your supposed to be something else i guess

lnk said...

CBS News Poll--through Wednesday (but not including the Palin speech):

McCain 42
Obama 42
Undecided 12

Last week Obama was up 8 in the same poll.

Anonymous said...

Never one to defend Huckabee (although one might argue that as a minister, he had more insight into who God was sending as a savior than Obama does), he seemed to think that he was the GOP's Messiah, perhaps he and the pundits that have repeated that line were referring to percentages rather than number of votes cast?

Anony 5:39,
You obviously do not believe in Divine Intervention, and I am not going to argue it with you (BTW, I happen to think Sarah Palin is "divine" and has energized a GOP that needed to wake up). However, I will remind you that eavesdropping is impolite, if you wanted to be in their conversation, you should have introduced yourself and your opinion and then proceeded to "school them" face to face, rather than behind their backs. Secondly, if you were casually listening, as you have said, how is it that you know what church they attend and what business is that of your's?

Anonymous said...

How come Lee Terry decided not to attend the RNC at the last minute? Apparently he was all set to go up until late last week? What changed his mind?

lnk said...

Folks--meant to add one thing to my post. Last night at the Sarpy County central committee meeting, there were five people who attended who had not been involved before. They came because of Palin's speech.

Yes, we've signed them up to help! Multiply that by thousands of similar meetings throughout the country--and you're seeing the effect of this selection.

This pick is good for women, good for our party and a big win for the country.

Anonymous said...

Wasn't that covered in a WH story yesterday? Or are you just fishing for the "real" story?

Maybe he wanted more time with his wife and kids? I know, it is hard to imagine a Male Elected Official participating in his children's lives. You all do think it is only the mom that should be consumed 24/7 with parenting. That has been your excuse for bashing Governor Palin for the last week, hasn't it?

Anonymous said...

What was covered in the World Herald yesterday was that Lee Terry suddenly changed his mind at the last minute. He was all set to go, and then changed his mind. The voters want to know -- what changed his mind that he couldn't go to MN to rally behind his party's choice for pres. and vice pres.?

lnk said...


It's now 4 points!

McCain 44
Obama 48

Reflects one day of calling after Palin's great speech.

(She is such a hit w/the American people that I bet the weekend polls have McCain/Palin in the lead.)

Anonymous 10:08--why don't you ask Terry yourself this weekend--he's probably gonna talk to about 5,000 people (or more) at the various festivals going on. Just go up to him and ask.

Anonymous said...

Jessica Moenning didn't call herself a guru, Jordan did. I think if you asked her she would now call herself a stay-at-home mom.

And she may not be a guru. But she did win Fortenberry's race, a nationally targted race, by a surprising 11 points in 2004.

She did work the 05 municipal elections in Omaha and Lincoln, including ousting Terry Werner from the Lincoln City Council.

She did answer the call from high-up elected officials in 2006 to keep the Ricketts campaign from dragging congressional races down and to basically run the statwide get out the vote efforts after the Ricketts campaign was already in trouble.

And she did help manage voter contact and turnout for Huckabee for President in Iowa and South Carolina.

Right Wing Professor said...

@4:08. Someone needs to fact check the fact check. Some idiots checked ballots for Biden in 23 states, but it wasn't when he was running for President of the United States. He'd dropped out after Iowa. What Palin said was therefore absolutely correct.

If I write in George Washington on November 4, does this mean he ran for President in 2008?

Right Wing Professor said...

Yesterday's Rasmussen tracking numbers swung nicely, and the crosstabs are even more favorable to McBrilliant.

And the little bird seems to be playing intrade. So far today, McCain +4.0

Snowflake Tears said...

So I watched four hours of this stuff on pbs and cspan a night, why, becuase i must hate myself.

So Republicans made fun of Obama's community organizing at least four times in one night at the convention. Mccain has a history of speaking extensively about community service (cited below)

I know Republicans enjoy the narrative of pulling ones self up from their bootstraps, isnt it a conservative idea to help people learn how to be advocates for themselves, to help them take responsibilty for themselves?

--"Working as director of the Developing Communities Project, a church-based group comprising eight Catholic parishes from June 1985 to May 1988, Obama helped set up a college prep tutoring program and a tenants right's organization."---

Mccain wrote this in the Washington monthly, celebrating Americorps, which also helps high school kids get into college, just like the Catholic church and Barack Obama.

Service Economy

National service is an issue that has been largely identified with the Democratic Party and the left of the political spectrum. That is unfortunate, because duty, honor, and country are values that transcend ideology. National service, both civilian and military, can embody the virtues of patriotism that conservatives cherish.

More than a decade ago, the patron saint of modern conservatism, William F. Buckley, Jr., offered an eloquent and persuasive conservative case for national service. In the book Gratitude, Buckley wrote, "Materialistic democracy beckons every man to make himself a king; republican citizenship incites every man to be a knight. National service, like gravity, is something we could accustom ourselves to, and grow to love."

Buckley was right, but it's fair to say that it took a while before we conservatives accustomed ourselves to the idea. Indeed, when Clinton initiated AmeriCorps in 1994, most Republicans in Congress, myself included, opposed it. We feared it would be another "big government program" that would undermine true volunteerism, waste money in "make-work" projects, or be diverted into political activism.

Anonymous said...

More people watched McCain than Obama.

His speech was uplifting while Obama's was shrill and full of attacks.

One of the best parts was when McCain deflected nicely the Democratic party protesters ("Ground noise and static".)

"GNAS"--that's what we usually get here from the lib trolls.

Anonymous said...

I'll tell you who watch: all the Obama supporters plus the few support McCain.

As for the polls, all are within the margin of error, and if you actually look at what pollsters are saying, they are pretty much not moving yet, after a bounce for Obama last week.

And who were you listening to? I heard "shrill" from Republicans (loved the personal attacks on rather than attacks on actual issues). But then, Republicans can tell lies and think nothing of it. It's become natural for them.

macdaddy said...

Snowflake tears: Obama has touted his time as a community organizer as one of his chief credentials to be President. He did a poor job at it and has even admitted so. I think working in your community to make it a better place is awesome. Kudos to those who do. But if you want me to vote for you for President based on your job as a community organizer (which, in Obama's case was a paid position), then you'd better have single-handedly built 1000 houses, or completely started a bone marrow donation service, or have the name Mother Teresa. In other words, you need to stand out from the millions of other Americans who do this stuff every day WITHOUT pay and who have been doing it better than you. It's as simple as that.

Snowflake Tears said...

Mother Teresa, Keating, McCain--all awful.
From Mommie Dearest The pope beatifies Mother Teresa, a fanatic, a fundamentalist, and a fraud.

And she was a friend to the worst of the rich, taking misappropriated money from the atrocious Duvalier family in Haiti (whose rule she praised in return) and from Charles Keating of the Lincoln Savings and Loan. Where did that money, and all the other donations, go? The primitive hospice in Calcutta was as run down when she died as it always had been—she preferred California clinics when she got sick herself—and her order always refused to publish any audit. But we have her own claim that she opened 500 convents in more than a hundred countries, all bearing the name of her own order. Excuse me, but this is modesty and humility?

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:23=GNAS

Right Wing Professor said...

If you want to know what Barack really thinks about 'community organizing', read John Judis's piece in TNR.

Obama was also worried about something else. He told Kellman that he feared community organizing would never allow him "to make major changes in poverty or discrimination." To do that, he said, "you either had to be an elected official or be influential with elected officials." In other words, Obama believed that his chosen profession was getting him nowhere, or at least not far enough. Personally, he might end up like his father; politically, he would fail to improve the lot of those he was trying to help.

And so, Obama told Kellman, he had decided to leave community organizing and go to law school. Kellman, who was already thinking of leaving organizing himself, found no reason to argue with him. "Organizing," Kellman tells me, as we sit in a Chicago restaurant down the street from the Catholic church where he now works as a lay minister, "is always a lost cause."

Anonymous said...

An MSNBC "focus group" asked voters to name a "significant legislative achievement" that Obama has had.

You know what the answer was? Total silence.

Kyle Michaelis said...

I don't even own a laptop - let alone a Blackberry - so Mr. McGrain is quite welcome to the title of the Nebraska blogosphere's most technologically adept typist. Better looking, though? I'm not willing to give that title up until we get a good look at SS.

Great blogging. Just in case McGrain ever learns a little bit of compassion and common sense, I'll be sure to hold open a contributing editor slot at NNN.

Julie Schmit-Albin said...

Snowflake Tears: Technically, she's Blessed Teresa of Calcutta at this time as she is beatified and on the road to canonization. "Fanatic, fundamentalist and fraud?" And we're supposed to rely on Slate? In Blessed Teresa's letters (which were not supposed to be published after she died) she talked of her self-doubt and feeling not worthy of her calling. In other words, she exhibited great humility. Funny how the rest of the world viewed her with total admiration but she herself was such a humble servant that she felt unworthy and questioned her relationship with God. It takes a lot of chutzpah to trash a woman who was a saint among us. I'm going to attribute it to the tough week you must have had not knowing how to react to Sarah Palin.

macdaddy said...

Snowflake Tears: Go ahead and attack Mother Teresa. I'm sure that will win you lots of votes. It's a can't miss strategy!

jefferyt said...

If Democrats really want to go down the road and begin trashing Mother Teresa, that will be a sure fire way to ensure a majority Catholic votes will not vote for them.

Go ahead and see where that gets you, Libs.

parah stalin said...

"If the Republicans would just shut their piehole on Palin's family and lifestyle, the Democrats would stop talking about it. The Obama camp has said leave the family alone, period. Why can't the Republicans leave it alone."
now you take that back, david!