Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Pennsylvania Primary

Richard and I watched the two speeches at the end of the Pennsylvania primary last night. He doesn't like to watch political coverage, so I usually watch the speeches on YouTube, but last night we sat and watched. I hadn't seen Hillary speak in a while. I never know whether I'm going to see the interesting Hillary or the annoying Hillary. She's interesting when she's talking policy, but so annoying when she's touting her vast experience. Last night she seemed to be Hillary playing Obama, right down to the supporters shouting "Yes, we will!"

At the end, the camera panned to Chelsea and Bill. They were standing maybe two arm's lengths apart in the crowd, more like strangers than like father and daughter. At the end of the speech I was waiting for Bill and Hillary to meet each other, to see if they would embrace, but someone intercepted her and they never came together.

Obama was already in Evansville, Indiana when he spoke a few minutes later. he gave a new speech, speaking to the latest talking points of the Democratic Party, highlighting McCain's words and policies and portraying him as just an extension of the Bush presidency. But we could hardly listen to the speech. There were three white guys in the Abercrombie and Fitch shirts who just couldn't sit still, much less pay attention.

First the guy in the black shirt is on the phone. Obama is speaking, and he's on the phone. I'm hoping it's his mother saying, "Hang up! You're on TV!"

But he just keeps talking. Once he finally hangs up, the guy on the other side of Obama, the one with "Fitch 54" on his shirt starts fidgeting. And fidgeting. He looks up, looks down, adjusts his shorts, raises his sign at random moments.

Obama is talking about layoffs and jobs moving overseas, the older couple in front of the Fitch guys reminds me of the couple in American Gothic. They are looking angry and shaking their heads. The cell phone Fitch guy is chatting with the person next to him. Fitch 54 is looking at something behind him.

"What is wrong with that guy?"

"He has to pee. He's wishing this would be over so he can go find a bathroom."

"Nope, he's itching again."

He's scratching his head. Then he's talking to the other guy. He rearranges his underwear again.

"His mother must be so proud."

Obama's speech barely mentions Clinton. He's all about defeating McCain in November. He doesn't even seem to be worried who the Democratic nominee will be.

Mercifully, the speech ends, Obama leaves the podium, and the camera leaves the Abercrombie and Fitch boys to keep scratching and fidgeting without us. Michelle and Obama hug each other and nobody dares get between them.

The speech is not posted on YouTube, or anywhere else online that I can find. The NY Times is calling for the superdelegates to come in and settle the nomination to "avoid a bloodbath." . I disagree. I've dealt enough Hold Em games down to the river, I've lost and won plenty of chess games on the last three moves, The end game is important, so you play to the end in order to better play end games. As much as I admire Obama and his campaign, watching the Abercrombie and Fitch boys (who let them stand behind the candidate, anyway?) tells me that this show needs a little more rehearsal.

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