My first headline for this entry was "Angelides bores small crowd." Poor guy -- almost nobody is paying attention as the former candidate for governor makes an utterly uninspiring speech. Then it's time for Chris Dodd, the senator from Connnecticut who has about as much support now in the polls (that is, very little) as Bill Clinton did at this point in his first presidential bid. (Dodd likes to point this out.)
During the Hillary Clinton press conferece this morning, one of the reporters asked Clinton to respond to the perception that she's the old guard of the party and Barack Obama is the upstart. She sidestepped politely, but here on the convention floor, there's some evidence that the reporter was right. There were a lot more Hillary signs and a more organized contingent this morning, but Obama's people are distinctly younger.
Like Clinton, Obama has staged a surprise entrance -- not even the rank and file of his supporters know exactly what door he will enter. Read more »
Barack Obama is scheduled to speak shortly after 2 pm, but first we have to pass a rather large and loud choir that is performing in the convention lobby. I catch the posters in front, talking about the unlimited potential of nuclear energy and the tagling at the bottom: larouchepac.com.
I run into Bill Lockyer, the former state Attorney General (now treasurer) waiting his chance to get on stage. I explain to him that his successor, Jerry Brown, has formally closed any investigation in to the merger that gave Dean Singleton control over almost every daily newspaper in the Bay Area. "Any thoughts on that?" I ask.
I got a chance to talk briefly last night with Rep. Jerry McNerney, the man who defeated Richard Pombo, and I asked him what the Democrats would do after Bush vetoes the Iraq funding cutoff. "Bring it back again, and again, and again," he told me. "That's what I would do."
Shortly before Hillary Clinton takes the stage this morning, perhaps 200 cheering supporters are lined up just inside one of the side doors that lead into the cavernous convention center. The rest of the press folks are mostly hanging out on the raised press platform or in the media section, watching state party chair Art Torres vamp on the main stage, so I wander over to the Hillary crowd see what's going on. Bob Mulholland, the veteran political director of the CA Democratic Party, wanders over, too. "What are you all waiting for?" he asks. "Hillary!" they shout. Read more »
By Steven T. Jones
Last night's Critical Mass was big -- a population that was also swelled by way too many cops -- but other than that, it was pretty normal. As usual, there weren't any major incidents. As usual, the atmosphere was festive. As usual, the only aggressive behavior that I saw came from overentitled car drivers. These basic, predictable facts seemed to surprise the writers at the Chronicle, who apparently actually believed their own bicyclists-gone-wild bullshit. Read more »