I've felt like a stranger in my own land, which was increasingly growing stranger by the day.
I thought 2004 would repudiate all of that. It didn't. I groaned. I got depressed. Seriously depressed.
So I put all my hope that this election, finally, finally, most Americans would wake up and realize that these people can't govern, they just play at it on TV.
And I'm happy to say that this is exactly what happened. Wednesday morning greeted me with open arms, and I hit the road for a trip to Springfield (staff meeting). All the way down, I kept searching for NPR affiliates so I could get the latest dish. And revel. And revel. The sun came up, and I felt like, man, we've finally won something--something big.
And while some can't shut up about how we won (it's because we're apparently now conservatives), we know the truth. Like Bowers said, we pushed for the idea that this was a disastrous failure long before it was considered politically expedient. We demanded that our candidates state the obvious truth. We were laughed at out of hand for doing so.
We were right, bitches. So I wanted to include a few true stories from my experiences as one of the ground troops that helped make this so. Real stories, mind you.
- I encountered a Latino gentleman who had tried to vote on an electronic machine, but the vote for Congressman was the only vote he was offered. No judge races, state rep races, state senate races, or governor's races. Odd, no?
- I encountered a gentleman who told me he hoped I wasn't the one making all those calls on behalf of Tammy Duckworth. I told him the Republicans were behind that, not Tammy herself (which has since been proven true). He laughed at me, and told me he was glad that the Republicans were behind it, because he hated Tammy Duckworth. I shit you not.
- I got into an argument with a local rent-a-cop who did not want me handing out information at his polling site. As our lawyer explained to him (twice), this is perfectly legal activity, so long as the pamphleteer (in this case, me) is 100 feet away from the door to the polling site. He threatened to call the cops on me, but backed down.
- I watched two old white ladies get into an argument over whether or not the country needed more democrats in office.
- I had one woman who voted for Tammy, ask me whether she really wanted to let all the illegal aliens take social security benefits away from everyone. I told her no, that this was a lie created by Roskam's people, and she told me she felt better about voting for Tammy.
- The DuPage Republican party pulled a cute trick on election day--they stuffed Republican yard signs tightly on either side of Democratic yard signs on major intersections To remove them outright would be illegal, you see. To obstruct people from seeing them is just plain good politickin'.
But this picture still makes me smile. Look at Dick Cheney's face, and know that all we've been through is worthwhile.