A Tale of Two Rallies

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John McCain and Barack Obama held campaign rallies this past weekend that couldn’t have been more different than one another and they represent, I think, why Democrats are ascendant in this Country and Republicans are floundering.

John McCain was in Lakeville, MN on Friday. Lakeville is an outer ring suburb of Minneapolis that has grown by leaps and bounds over the past 10 years. White, middle class, with manicured lawns, homes with 3-car garages, and strip malls filled with stores you would recognize in any suburb in any part of the country, Lakeville is the American Dream incarnate. This area is solid George W. Bush country and why not? Bush (and Republican) policies have favored cities like Lakeville and their citizens for the past eight years. However McCain’s rally on Friday was angry. John McCain had to physically take the microphone away from a women who called Obama an Arab (some reports stated she added “terrorist? off-mic), over half of the questions from the attendees were to implore McCain to be meaner, to attack Obama and the Democrats. When McCain stated that Obama was a good family man and deserved respect, he was booed.

Contrast that scene with Obama’s rally Saturday afternoon in north Philly. Inner-city Philadelphia is one of those places that’s been ignored by the Bush Administration, predatory lending has led to an epidemic of home foreclosures, jobs are scarce, many of it’s best young men and women have gone to Iraq or Afghanistan, schools are ignored, tax policies favor the families in Lakeville not Philadelphia. If any group of people should be angry over the course that this Country has taken over the past eight year, it’s those who live in the inner cities. However, anger was not the flavor of the day. Instead it was one of hope.

Now of course these two rallies could just represent the state of the presidential race. It’s hard to be happy when your guy is losing. Likewise, why be upset when your candidate is seemingly cruising to victory. But I think there’s more here than just the ups and downs of an electoral contest. Right now Republicanism is a spent force. Republicans have no record to run on, they have no new ideas (just think the panic if the one new idea they did have – privatize social security – was enacted), they have no positive vision for America. All they have left is fear and anger.

Unfortunately for Republicans, fear and anger don’t work anymore. First there’s just too much information out there so while ugly rumors can be get out to more people quickly through the internet, they can be shot down just as quickly. Also Republicans have gone to the fear well too many times. When Republicans talk about how Democrats will ruin the economy most remember how the economy under Bill Clinton was a whole lot more robust than under George W. Bush. When Republicans talk about social ills under Democrats, America looks at a horndog John McCain dumping his first wife for an heiress, Larry Craig on his knees in an airport restroom, and lobbyists buying Republican influence with bags of money and gifts.

Even though it appears counterintuitive, I believe that north Philly rally is more reflective of America in 2008 than the one that took place on Friday. America is more diverse, more hopeful, more forgiving than those angry people that made their way to the lily white suburb of Lakeville. That’s why Barack Obama is winning this race. His is the face of America, his are the policies that make more sense, his views are those that resonate with a country that is sick of the Republican stance of angry words and broken promises.

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This page contains a single entry by Freealonzo published on October 13, 2008 9:01 AM.

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