Earlier today, I went to the Rally and Potluck dinner at Abingdon High School. We got there about ten minutes to five, and it ended up not starting until 5:20 or so, but it was worth it. Some highlights (in order of appearance):
Creigh Deeds: State Senator Deeds gave a high-energy speech that would fire up anybody. About midway through the speech, Tim Kaine arrived, and of course received a standing ovation. One highlight of the speech was a line akin to "I live in Bath County with my wife, my kids, 6 horses, 5 ponies, and a donkey named Harry S Truman." (Sure, we've all heard it before, but I still like it).
Leslie Byrne: Miss Byrne gave a pretty good speec and told the story about the girl scouts who visited her Congressional office. The punchline was, "Miss Byrne, can boys be in Congress too?" Governor Warner arrived midway through her speech, and, like Kaine, received a warm welcome. The big finale concerned electing "Tim, Leslie, and Creigh, and giving Virginia some T-L-C."
Rick Boucher: Congressman Boucher is always good to hear. He said he knew he would have an opponent next year ("We just don't know which state he'll come from this time."). He also introduced his mother, Dorothy, to the crowd, who appeared to be at least 85 or 90.
Linwood Holton: Former Governor Holton was extremely entertaining. One thing I liked to hear was, "Seeing all these folks out, I almost feel bad to be a Republican." (Or something very similar). Governor Holton said he had recruited 21 people to go to the polls and vote for Kaine, and we should all get at least 10 people to go vote.
Mark Warner: Governor Warner touted the success of the last four years of the Warner-Kaine administration, and said that by electing Tim Kaine, we could carry on that success. He pointed out that Tim Kaine "married above himself, in terms of marrying Linwood's daughter." He implored us to leave our cell phones turned on, "You hear the rings and hear an annoying sound. I hear cha-ching cha-ching." He also said that without Southwest Virginia, he couldn't have been elected.
Tim Kaine: Tim Kaine was the star of the show. He got up, talked about his three heroes (Jim O'Leary, Linwood Holton, and his own father, who was in attendance), and said that the momentum was in the ticket's favor. He said on November 9th we could wake up knowing we had won the closest, and most important election in our state's history.
I talked briefly with Senator Deeds, who told me how his polls were doing ("I was behind by 8, now I'm behind by 3, the momentum is picking up. People are catching on to the disgusting ads McDonnell is running, and funding with money from God knows where."), and seemed ready to win on Tuesday. I talked to Leslie Byrne, who gave me a sticker and declared me an "Official Ambassador for Byrne." Yeah, I thought that was nifty. I talked to Governor Holton, who remembered meeting me in Big Stone Gap in February ("You look like you go two foot taller, boy. I bet everybody looks up to you"). I talked to Tim Kaine, who said he had heard of Neal2028 (awesome!). My most interesting was Governor Warner, who I again asked if he would run for President. His reply: "I'll let everybody know soon. It'll be interesting. Stay tuned."
(Also there was: Senator Phillip Puckett, Delegate Joe Johnson, Rex McCarty, and numerous local officials)
Finally! We got to the food. More food that I had seen in one place in a long time. I had plenty of it, too. Fried chicken, spaghetti and meatballs, meatloaf, macaroni salad, potato salad, baked beans, deviled eggs, some white-ish stuff that was really good, ham salad sandwich, and macaroni and cheese. And then I went back for seconds!
Well, on election day; Me and a friend of mine will be working the polls for 7 hours. What will you be doing to elect Tim, Leslie, and Creigh???
Daily (Evolving) Predicition
Tim Kaine (D) 52%
Jerry Kilgore (R) 47%
Russ Potts (I) 1%
Leslie Byrne (D) 51%
Bill Bolling (R) 49%
Creigh Deeds (D) 50%
Bob McDonnell (R) 50%
Today would mark the 105th anniversary of Emmett, my late grandfather's (on my dad's side) birthday. He died in 1990, and, although my memories are dim of him, I miss him, and we'll all always miss him.