Speaking of Dean, the campaign will be rolling out a website, tonight, based on the codebase from the Dean campaign. (Several people on the campaign, including Phil's daughter Megan, worked for Dean.) You get an account, and it has tools for phonebanking, door-to-door canvassing, and so on. Since I haven't exactly been a stunning success at fundraising, I wonder if any of y'all out there would consider a phonebanking party, or something like that. Bring cellphones, I'll provide pizza, we can make calls for a few hours, then play games... Drop a comment if that's something you'd be into, or if you'd just like an account.
The convention was a lot of fun. This morning, before I'd even gotten my coffee, I got dragooned into working as a whip out on the assembly floor, canvassing delegates. Mostly this was fairly straightforward counting, but I did find a few undecided delegates, and chatted with them about why I've been supporting Phil -- my sense of him as a forward-thinker, the guy who got into sustainable development when nobody talked about that, and then socially-responsible investing back before the Domini fund was a common investment; and as somebody who's really serious about politics as a public service and a realm of substance, rather than just style. A couple people had particular issues they wanted to discuss. I ran into one delegate from my area who was interested in hearing whether Phil had a position on electoral reform (for which I had to refer him to the senior staff; I did, on the first occasion I met Phil, mention my own interest in that topic, and he seemed open-minded, but I'm not aware that his published list of positions includes a stand on that). Grant McMicken, a candidate for Superintendent of the public schools, said he hadn't heard much about Phil's positions on education (which is, in fact, one of the major points he's been addressing, with plans for increased accessibility for the whole college and university system). Grant actually had some really interesting ideas for something a little like Americorps -- compensating people for public service. He wants to take the top-performing students from economically depressed areas, and giving them free rides in the UC/CSU system, in exchange for returning to their home schools and doing tutoring, acting as role models, etc. There was another -- I think Jack Crow (I passed the paper with his name on it up the chain) -- who was a liberal evangelical Christian, who wanted to know where Phil was on incorporating relgious ideas into his talk about values. (Given that Phil's youngest daughter dances with a group from their Greek Orthodox church, I'm pretty sure he's comfortable with religion. *g*) In any case, Jack (assuming I'm remembering his name right) was hoping to see some use of the idea of "stewardship" -- his phrase was "stewards of hope" -- in high-level Democratic talking points. And it's not a bad idea. My personal favored phrase for a national Democratic agenda would be something like "a new Democratic Covenant" -- gets at both religious and contractual ideas. And, regardless of your take on the Founding Fathers, it's certainly true that, farther back, there are religious roots to the country -- the City on a Hill -- and that history deserves some respect.
By the end of the day, for my region, we were up 11 heads over the data we'd had at the start. I never did hear how counts turned out for other regions, but it was pretty clear if things went that well everywhere else, we were going to win.
Anyways. I really should get some sleep. We were at the con at 8:45am Friday, and have been running ragged ever since.
To any Westly folks that happen to stop through -- you guys had an impressive organization in there, and a lot of enthusiasm. Whoever wins the primary, we're going to need that energy, going forward to November. I hope, on June 7th, we'll all be on the same side. (BTW, if you're going to drop an anon comment, put a name or email address on it. Better yet, get an account -- it's free.)