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Blog: Edwards superdelegate digs DNC scene

Deb Marquez
Special to the Vail Daily
Vail, CO Colorado
Deb Marquez/Special to the DailySAFER, a group that wants to legalize marijuana, was among the activists making themselves seen and heard around the Democratic National Convention Monday.
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DENVER, Colorado ” Latino vote issues are my primary focus on the DNC. I am always eager to hear about Latino vote during our caucus meetings at the convention and regular DNC meetings.

Today was more about the end of an era than a focus on where we are as a community and our role in the November election.

It’s always special to me when we can present our Latino elected officials are showcased in a forum like our caucus. I mean there is a gap in representation proportionate to our population in many parts of the country.



We heard from Sen. Ken Salazar, Sen. Bob Menendez, Congressman John Salazar, Rep. Loretta Sanchez and our caucus leaders. Howard Dean spoke about how important it is to get the Latino voter registered and everyone to early voting.

But there was a something lacking. These same elected officials I heard from at LA 2000 or Boston 2004 and now Denver 2008. They are all great leaders for our community, but I would have liked to have heard from others.



It would be nice for the Hispanic delegates to hear from candidates like New Mexico congressional candidate Ben-Ray Lujan, Texas senate candidate Rick Noriega and those new young candidates that will hopefully be the leaders of the future. I met more Latino candidates running for office at Netroots Nation than I did at the DNC Hispanic Caucus today.

I think we can do better in the future. That will be my suggestion ” dos centavos.

And, it will be nice when the Latino community gets to know and embrace Sen. Barack Obama. It appeared to be a very HRC-centered event today. Maybe the caucus will move into an all Obama, all the time mode by Wednesday’s meeting.



On another note: My cousin Gina (Mora) Nettle arrived and we attended the Hispanic Caucus together. It’s really neat to see my much younger family members becoming involved in presidential politics.

My good friend Steven Ybarra from California was in attendance and I got my very own OBAMANOS bumper sticker from him.

I’m writing this continuation at the Big Tent where I found the only reliable WiFi today. I’m off to be a delegate with the Colorado delegation in a couple of hours. Then we have two late evening events: A Latino Gala and A Veterans party. If I can report before turning in, I will.

So, under the very kind offer from the Green Chile Dem herself, the dog is blogging. Since Kos limits us to one blog a day and there is soooooo much going on to talk about, the Dog is going to post, cross-post and cross-cross-post this at Kos and Square State.

For those that don’t know the Dog’s story, I am a talking dog who is lucky enough to have an owner that will type for him, so you will get a little (the Dog promises to keep it down) third person reference, if you hate it, please forgive the Dog and his typist in advance.

For those that don’t know the Dog’s story, I am a talking dog who is lucky enough to have an owner that will type for him, so you will get a little (the Dog promises to keep it down) third person reference, if you hate it, please forgive the Dog and his typist in advance.

What should we talk about? Colorado Brahman went to the Hispanic Caucus with Debbie this morning, he has promised to bring lots of info and pics on the site later, but for right now, the Dog thought he would talk about what it is like for the folks that work the DNCC but don’t get to go to the events. In order to do this the Dog parked a few miles from the Big Tent and hiked in. Dog’s love to walk, don’t cha know?

When ever any one has talked about convention time in Denver they have always given the impression that the streets would be packed and that there would be something going one from riots to policy confabs on every single corner. This is just not the case.

Yes, as you get closer to the Convention Center (where many of the meeting are being held) and the Pepsi Center (know affectionately by locals as The Can) there are more people on the street, but it could by no means be called a throng.

One group of folks working the convention that you notice right away are the police. The dog was interested to hear what the police had to say so he went up to several of them and chatted them up a little. With the exception of a group of riot police that would not answer a single question they were all willing to talk.

In fact most of them were not even from the Denver Police. They were from the surrounding towns of Aurora, Brighton and Thornton. When the dog asked if the whole Aurora police was on duty they were quick to say that there were still police in Aurora as well as those on duty in Denver, so for those there were thinking of a crime spree during the convention, you might want to think again.

Yesterday Mrs. Dog had an interesting ” well to call it a run in is really an overstatement, but let’s use it anyway. She works at a Starbucks a few miles from downtown and when a group of police came in to get their caffeine fix, they asked how long a truck had been parked in front. It was a heavy duty pickup with a built up wooden panels extending to it a good six feet. On the side of the panels there were pictures of the Twin Towers burning and the legend “Explosion or Implosion?”

Obviously the owner is one of those that feel there was more to 9/11 than meets the eye, but it was a little ominous in any case. The police decided that they needed to act so they taped the truck off and started to look for the owner ” they found him in a Greek restaurant next store. They talked to the fellow and found that he was protesting the DNC.

They also decided to treat this as a training exercise, so out came six more cars and the bomb-sniffing dogs. When the truck was found to be clean, the police escorted the owner and the truck to the protest zone promising that he would be able to park it somewhere, that the Delegates could see it (through decent binoculars, anyway).

But what struck Mrs. Dog was the fact that they did not make it a DEFCON 4 type situation. They did what they needed to, they made sure things were safe and they moved the guy, no trauma, not very much drama.

The dog stopped and talked to a number of vendors as well. There are any number of them selling DNC and Obama swag. The Dog did buy a shirt and found that they were not selling as much of the gear as they thought. Now it is still really early in the Convention so things might pick up.

Also working the convention as are all of the issue folks. The dog was chatted up by the Israel Project and SAFER, which is the group working to legalize marijuana. SAFER’s rep pointed out the Mayor Hickenlooper had a commission recommend that there be no arrests for use of pot during the convention.

The commission’s conclusion was that if adults wanted to use pot as a safer alternative to alcohol they should be allowed to. This group has done a pretty good job in advocating the legalization of pot and managed to get 41 percent of the vote in 2006.

The last group that the dog saw was the delegates themselves. They were slowly working their way toward the sites around town. You can really tell them since they all seem to do the same thing. There is one out in front with either a map or an iPhone and they are looking at it and walking too fast.

Strung out behind them, like a line of baby ducks, the rest of the group is walking too slow and looking up. None of the delegates really wanted to talk, but they were all happy to get directions.

So there are the dog’s first impression of the Convention. On Green Chile Democrats we will have a lot more.

Deb Marquez’s blog: http://greenchiledems.soapblox.net/

Deb Marquez, of Edwards, is a superdelegate at the Democratic National Convention in Denver. She is a longtime member of the Eagle County Democratic Party.


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