Oakland attorney Meredith Brown, the Democratic National Convention delegate whom I quoted last week as hoping Hillary Clinton would be Barack Obama‘s vice presidential pick, is now in Denver and sent me some early observations a few minutes ago: “Hillary supporters at the convention are concerned that the Republican Party is interpreting strident support for Clinton as a rejection of Obama. Many women are recounting experiences with reporters questioning their proud display of the Hillary tee shirts that they have worn for the last 8 months.”
Her full report, after the jump…
“The overriding message here is a focus on unity and national issues. Nancy Pelosi spoke at the California Delegation Breakfast and she called for unity to promote the election of a pro-choice democrat to the White House that will ensure our national security by reducing our dependence on foreign oil; support investment in public education; support fair wages; and support universal health care. Speaker Pelosi received loud applause from a packed room of Clinton and Obama delegates as she reminded us that McCain supports tax cuts for the wealthy and Obama supports democratic principles. Senator Dean Florez brought home this sentiment as he told the delegation breakfast that the next president will have the opportunity to appoint four Supreme Court justices. As Senator Florez spoke, the delegation rose to their feet and chanted “we are one” over and over, louder each time. Hillary supporters at the convention are concerned that the Republican Party is interpreting strident support for Clinton as a rejection of Obama. Many women are recounting experiences with reporters questioning their proud display of the Hillary tee shirts that they have worn for the last 8 months. Our newly elected Bay Area legislator Nancy Skinner mentioned an impromptu unity briefing that she had given at the airport to a few Hillary supporters, that had been shocked and caught unaware of the media buzz. Everyone is talking about the buzz that is being circulated outside of the convention halls.
“But, on the inside, UNITY is the word on everyone’s lips. Last evening at the Celebration of Civil Rights, we heard from Jessie Jackson Jr. that the 14th Amendment was born from the American Civil Rights struggle and with its passage, the boats of all American’s had risen. Nancy Zirkin, Executive Director of the Leadership Council on Civil Rights, celebrated the nomination of an African American Man as the presidential nominee for a major American Political Party. At the same time, she celebrated Barack Obama’s historic candidacy as a triumph of the Civil Rights struggle, she emphasized the importance of this moment because for the first time ever, the two primary Democratic presidential candidates were a woman and an African American man. The executive director of the National Voting Rights Museum thanked the Clinton Foundation for providing critically needed support recently when the museum needed emergency funds to gut its present location, and reconstruct the 150 year old structure. Next door, at the reception hosted by State Senator Alex Padilla, Clinton and Obama supporters sipped wine and planned their strategies for local and national races. City Councilwoman Michelle Martinez, a 26-year-old Latina, spoke humbly with California State Party VP Alexandra Rooker and Mickey Ibarra, former Director of Intergovernmental Affairs for President Bill Clinton, and other California democrats about her historic struggles as a grass roots candidate for City Council and now for Mayor of Santa Ana in Southern California. It was business as usual at an unusual political convention where barriers are being broken on a local and national level by people that want change so earnestly, they are making change happen.”