Elections '08 Presidential Race

Pre Dem Debate Red Carpet Events


The last Democratic debate before Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious Tuesday
starts at 5 pm at the Kodak theater. But for those of you who want to get in on the action but don’t have tickets for the debate itself (despite your pleas on Craigs list) might I suggest one of the events at the lively and substantive pre-debate show.

4:30 PM- The Iraq Veterans Against the War and Military Families Speak Out will hold a press conference and protest outside the theater. “”We’re coming to the debates to remind people that what should be front and center in this debate is the war ” said Pat Alviso, a member of Military Families Speak Out (MFSO) whose son is a Marine and has served two tours of duty in Iraq.

3 PM – Code Pink is asking all those who wish to make a point about ending the war, not invading Iran and calling for impeachment to wear….well…pink and meet all other Code Pink people outside the theater to join in an “action.” (At least it sounds like more fun than standing around with a sign, although Code Pink actions sometimes tend to get a participant or two arrested so best to bring your lawyer’s number with you.)

4-8 PM – Protect our National Parks by voting for….um….a bear.
In an effort to get the presidential candidates to pay attention to national park issues, the nonprofit, nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association is sponsoring its own presidential candidate—Teddy Mather—a bear who is pledging to make America’s national parks a national priority.

I’ve exchanged emails with their PR person
and I agree there are serious issues at stake here. Whether having a person dressed up as a large stuffed bear is the best way to promote things like the chronic underfunding of these irreplaceable national treasures remains to be seen.

For those who want to know more, USA today has two articles worth reading here and here.

Those that I’ve listed are far from the only groups staging events. Trust me, there’s something for everyone—conservative and liberal alike.

And naturally both Obama supporters and Clinton supporters
will be rallying outside the Kodak Theater at 2 pm. (Hint: You’ll know those of your own personal political persuasion by their signs and t-shirts.)


As it turns out, I’ll be teaching at USC this afternoon, so won’t make it to Hollywood in time for the hoopla. But I figure we’ll all meet up afterward, cyberly speaking.

PS: LA OBSERVED has a great rundown on good places to go for pre-debate commentary from all sides of the political spectrum.


  • Well gee Celeste you missed the Obama Rally at LA Trade Tech – also a “Town Hall Meeting” there. Doors opened at 8:30 AM this morning. I didn’t find out about it till around ten this morning and figured it was way too late to take the Blue Line up there.

  • For our out of town visitors maybe I should have pointed out that Trade Tech is just down the street from Trojanville.

  • Well, our friend Marc Cooper made it there and has a report on it up at HUFFPO and his website.

  • Gee, I wonder who Marc is supporting? The only real question is, can he think of anything new to say against Hillary he hasn’t already, in dozens of recent hit pieces on her? You’d think he’d have run out of ammo by now.

  • Well a pretty strong debate. I don’t know who won but the losers were MCcain and Romney. Best zingers were from Obama.

    On McCain:

    Refrrering to the Arizonan’s flip-flops on the Bush Tax cuts (which both he and Hil agreed to let lapse):

    “Looks like the ‘Straight Talk Express’ lost a few wheels lately!”

    On Romney:

    In answer to the question of the GOP’s calls to run the Fed Govt more like a business and after Hil noted that Bush was an MBA/CEO “And look what we’ve got:

    “Well Romney hasn’t got much of a return on his investment now has he?”

    I’m sure the GOP will say different but these two completely outshined the grumpy old men in Simi Valley!

  • Reports from CNN said that tickets were going for a thousand bucks a pop. For a Televised political debate!

    The audience only lacked Armani and Mackie outfits. It looked like oscar night out there – stopped trying to count the stars but saw Spielberg, Keaton, Reiner etc. Yep you know where the Hollywood Liberals were tonight!

  • Obama actually had the better proposal for universal health care, making it cheap enough so most everyone will want to buy it — he threw out a figure of $2500/family max. But where did he get this figure, and on what basis could be believe that he could get healthcare providers to deliver for this amount? Just doesn’t sound realistic.

    He’s also right that Hillary’s “requiring” everyone to buy it is pretty vague on the penalty end: what would they do, fine people who went into hospitals without it? (Like with auto insurance?) Unlikely. Also, she’d basically turn the system over to existing HMO’s, and they suck bigtime already; with even less competition, they’ll be a nightmare.

    Hopefully as the election looms closer, they’ll be more forthcoming on details.

  • Correction: listening to the debate again, Obama just said he’d like to REDUCE ea family’s healthcare bill by $2500/yr. But that’s meaningless, since there are so many plans depending on deductables, age, health conditions, etc., and an HMO now for a small family without huge deductible is $15K/yr. Yet both candidates didn’t deny the “accusation” that Rinos say their plans would still cost billions in higher taxes. Both made vague claims about how they’d pool doctors, hospitals etc. and cut out lobbyists/ influence of drug co’s to save many millions — but none of it made financial sense; basically, they’re saying they’ll try something/ anything new since our current system isn’t working. Obama talks a lot about getting the American public “to reach higher” in sacrificing for those who can’t, etc.; if wishes were pigs, all peasants would be fat and rich.

  • I listened to as much of the debate as I could while in my car. I have a choice of a crook whose plans makes me puke or a decent guy whose ideas make me puke. Oh, I’m talking about the Democratic debate.

  • If I voted Republican, I would have the choice between a flip-flopper who vigorously supports this war and doesn’t know squat about economics and a man who believes his underwear is sacred.

  • What’s this about sacred underwear? I saw Romney on either Leno or Letterman, boasting that he has the best wife ever, because she gets up every morning at dawn to hand-chop his granola: chops the nuts, mixes the right combo of dried fruit… scary.

  • Don’t have the details yet Celeste but Oprah is coming to town and she’s bringing Caroline Kennedy along to do a Rally for Obama.

    And Reg, I believe tommorrow three suriving memebers of the “Greatful Dead” will put on a “Deadheads for Obama” Concert in San Francisco at the Warfield. Dig out your Tye Dyes!

  • Can’t make the Dead concert – I’ll at the rally in Hillsborough where former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker and National Review co-founder Jeffrey Hart announce their endorsements. Hulk Hogan will also be hosting an event in Hayward…

    Seriously, I went to the Oakland event with Ted Kennedy at Beebe CME yesterday and it was amazing. Watching Teddy preside was like a blast from the past in itself – an old-school master pol with the Kennedy backstory playing a packed room like Leonard Bernstein conducted the New York Philharmonic. Quite something to see. I’ll take that over the big O or the Living Dead any day.

    My other thrill of the day was taking a huge bag of Obama buttons (I’d independently ordered a thousand online to distribute to precinct captains and area teams from some vendor in AZ because the “official” store was badly backordered and the office cupboard was bare) and passing them out on BART during the morning commute. The response was amazing…everything I had got grabbed up between Oakland West and the Embarcadero.

    Today we canvass…

  • See my latest. Today Susan Eisenhower endorses Obama in the WaPo. That’s Ike’s granddaughter. Notes that the Farewell address with that “Military Industrial Complex” line was given nearly fifty years ago and look where we are now!

  • Don’t know about Lester’s tux (with or without sacred undies) but the Deadhead gig sold in in 30 minutes.

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