February 24, 2008

Why It's Worth It

Yesterday was WOW busy and full with the Lyon County Democratic Convention.

I got up at 4:30 (after going to bed at 1am), left the house at 7am, was at the convention (I was the convention committee chair) from 7:15 until 5:30 completely busy the whole time...running around..answering questions, working with both campaigns, the credentials committee to work out issues, working with my own group (Hillary) to make sure all our missing delegate slots were filled, etc, etc, etc.

It was frustrating to many of the delegates that such mundane things as platform discussions, waiting on the credentials committee report, and other business delayed the moment they had all been waiting for: Delegate Election.

The moment of truth finally came and the convention came alive with competing group chants of "Yes we can!" and "Yes we will!" Determining group strength was easy. Then we moved into delegate election and each group worked out a way for each person running for delegate an opportunity to speak on their own behalf. The convention rules said they could speak for a minute, but in our group we realized that we could be there for 30-40 minutes, so limited time to 30 seconds. We picked a time keeper (the ten-year-old daughter of one of our delegates) and she was a very conscientious time keeper.

Everyone gave their speeches and I was so incredibly impressed by the life stories many of them wove into their narratives. I am sure the Obama group would say the same thing. We were allowed to vote for five delegates per ballot and let me tell you, that was one of the toughest decisions I've ever had to make. They all deserved to be delegates. How could I pick only five? We elected half our delegates (14) on the first ballot and had to make the tough choice again of five more for the second ballot where we elected our remaining 13.

At the end of the day, our convention was almost perfectly split in raw votes: 78 to 77 (with Obama getting the one extra vote) and splitting the delegates to the state convention evenly: 27 to 27.

Lots of drama and intense feelings, but at the end of the day, I really realized why I love being involved in grassroots politics. Its about the people. Period.

No comments: