Sunday, March 30, 2008

Congressman Jerry McNerney On Iraq, Presidential Race

At the California State Democratic Convention, Congressman Jerry McNerney took a small bit of time to talk with me about the Iraq War and the Presidential Race. He's an uncommitted Superdelegate and as such I tried to get him to explain who he was leaning to and what his criteria were for selection, but he didn't answer that, preferring to focus instead on his reelection campaign.

Leno Wins Endorsement Floor Fight At Convention

In what one observer called the "nastiest (convention) floor fight they'd ever seen," Assemblyman Mark Leno won the endorsement floor fight today, Sunday, at the California State Democratic Convention. Now, it's Mark Leno as Democrat versus the Republlican Nation for the right to represent San Francisco in the California Senate.

Meanwhile, the ousted Senator Carol Migden left the general hall in disgrace, after her partner issued an 11th-hour motion to block the vote to block a special motion to seat Mark Leno as challenger to Joe Nation, and after Migden's failed initial motion to nix Leno's endorsements.

Got that?

I've got this entire bit of drama on video and will edit and upload it very soon. Right now, the convention staffers are taking down the chair and cleaning up the exhibit hall.

Stay tuned.

Bill Clinton's Speech Brings The House Down

I just survived the mosh pit of people that were rushing to get close to, see, and in some cases hug former President Bill Clinton. I got the entire speech on video, but given its length I'll post it in segments.

I'm not sure it was a good idea to have Kamila Harris speak before Bill Clinton because, well, she can't match his fire-power. The buzz was that Senator Kennedy was going to be here, but that obviously did not happen.

More on this soon.

The convention itself is not over, just the rock-star moment.

Bill Clinton Is Here

Art Torres is introducing Bill Clinton

Met Obama Supporter and Delegate Curtis Walker

I just met and talked with Curtis Walker, who's a massive Obama supporter as precinct captain and national convention delegate candidate. I had been litterally harranging Curtis for some time about starting a blog for himself and the campaign, and he's done it.

But what's great about being here is to meet all of the cool people in the Obama campaign and in California politics in general.

Assm Mark Leno Talks About The Chase For Delegate Signatures - Video

California Democratic Convention Sunday - Debra Bowen's Introduced

California Secretary of State Debra Bowen is introduced and you can tell she's had her coffee: "Good Morning Democrats!" blarred around the hall. Wow. But she's got a great stage presence.

Meanwhile the Clinton people wait for Bill at the left. Still smaller in size than the Obama crowd.

Debra is focusing on voting security, much to the delight of many here like Brent Turner, who are concerned about the lack of transparency in the electronic voting system.

"In short, I'm creating the kind of checks and balance in our voting system that the founding fathers created in our government system."

She gets a standing ovation.

This Place Is Packed As of 10:26. A Scene

This is a hell of a scene. There must be about 15,000 people here in this hall and all are paying rapt attention to Kamela Harris' speech, but also waiting for former President Bill Clinton. But what I'm surprised at his the power of her speech. She represented Barack well.

..But the Big Show's next (Clinton, Bill).

Kamela Harris is Giving A Good Speech

Ok, so she's not Ted Kennedy, but District Attorney Kamela Harris is giving a good speech on behalf of Barack Obama. It's well-received after a kind of rocky start. But now she's found her voice.

On The Floor OF The Convention - Procedures and Waiting

Art Torres is about to introduce District Attorney Kamela Harris to speak on behalf of Senator Barack Obama. She stars by saying that someone asked her what she was doing in taking the stage next to Bill Clinton. Her answer was "it's part of the campaign; the audacity of hope."

There are now a LOT of Obama supporters as Harris speaks.

(Image coming soon.)

California Democratic Convention Sunday - A Looming Floor Fight

As I wrote earlier, there's a looming floor fight today, Sunday at the California Democratic Convention. It's between Mark Leno and Carol Migden. But today, there are some people who I've talked to and who believe that the matter of gaining an endorsement for either person may be totally sacked today, and in the process bring a terrible end to a convention with so much riding on the future of the party, both locally and nationally.

As I write this, about 45 Hillary Clinton supporters have massed near the wall left of me. As Jennifer, with Momocrats pointed out to me, "they're a machine with signs made" whereas the Obama supporters have handmade signs.

Willie Brown Fires Up California Democrats At Cal Dem Convention

Willie Brown set the tone for the convention delegates Saturday with this rousing speech.

Ted Kennedy To Speak for Obama Today At California Democratic Convention

It didn't make the SF Chronicle, perhaps because their reporter didn't get the memo , but Ted Kennedy's the secret surprise guest set to speak for Barack Obama and a perfect counterpoint to the appearance of President Bill Clinton at today's California State Democratic Convention.

His appearance was the buzz of the convention.

Stay tuned.

Migden v. Leno For Endorsements at California Democratic Convention

As I write this and as you sleep, a game came to an end at 11 PM and it's 11:58 PM now.

That game was the hunt for 300 California Democratic delegate signatures on the part of State Senator Carol Migden and termed-out California Assemblyman Mark Leno, and their supporters at the California State Democratic Convention.

As I left the San Jose Convention Center to get home and then get some sleep for tommorrow's fireworks with the visit of former President Clinton and Senator Ted Kennedy, the Leno and Migden teams were racing from room to room, and even from hotel to hotel in search of delegates and signatures.

Basically, Leno -- in trying to oust the incumbent Migden -- has mounted a charge to gain 300 signatures to block the endorsement of Leno by California Treasurer Phil Angelidies. But the Migden forces anticipated this, and had embarked on their own effort to get 300 delegates to sign a petition to thwart the Leno petition, thus assuring that their endorsements remain intact.

Get it?

This is the rough and tumble of Democratic politics in California. It's dirty and at times ugly and slimy. It has other wise good people telling massive lies -- not Leno or Migden -- about who's backing them on fliers passed out at the convention. It has people milling about late at night on a Saturday, but making a fun time of it, with dance parties and cocktail hours.

Some of us -- me -- who had to drive back to Oakland, missed this late night fun stuff. But I'll get an update soon, and be there for what may be a major floor fight if the endorsements are successfully eliminate via signature.

Stay tuned.