Monday, June 09, 2008
Long before Senate District 10 ended its 4:00 a.m. all-night marathon, Eddie Griffin was as good as dead as delegate destined for Denver. SD 10 was a tenacious group of cat-fighters, still clawing for votes, even amid rumors that Hillary Clinton was ending her presidential bid.
Altogether, some 7,300 delegates from around the state of Texas converged on the capitol to caucus and elect state party leadership and vote on issues. They had each had fought an uphill battle just to get to the Austin State Democratic Convention, and every vote from the start, was an eye-scratch.
Day 1 lasted all day and all night, and Day 2 started at 8:00 a.m.
Regular politicians must have been accustomed to this type of grueling test of endurance. But it takes the rest of us unawares. We did not anticipate all-night sessions and all-night vote tallying.
My first weakness was exposed on Friday morning when caught in the downpour on my way to register. From that point on, between coughing and sneezing, I could not fathom the strength to fight for a national delegate spot.
But somewhere in the twilight of my memories, Chelsea Clinton appeared on the convention floor with word from her mother Hillary. On Saturday morning, Hillary Clinton would hold a news conference and suspend her candidacy and endorse Barack Obama.
The announcement from Chelsea created a stir and some consternation among Clinton placard holders. The rest of us sat and watched silently as the Hillary Clinton delegates bewailed their last hoorays. For all intents and purposes, this longest and most bitterly fought Democratic presidential campaign was over. But the Hillary people were not ready to hear it. However, I was relieved. This was why I came.
No longer was I compelled to go all the way to the National Convention. We held our precinct delegation numbers. My job, for the most part, was done.
Coming into the Democratic State Convention, Hillary Clinton lead Barack Obama in primary delegates by a margin of 65-61. Now 67 more delegates were being apportioned from precinct and district caucus results. The finally tally came in on Saturday, just prior to Senator Clinton’s announcement: Texas final delegate count was Obama 99 and Clinton 94.
Hillary Clinton did not won Texas, as she had once boasted. And, Eddie Griffin was among the body count of Obama delegates that helped reverse Clinton’s fortune in the state. Vindicated, I was now free.
Sometime before 3 a.m. on Saturday morning, long after I crawled into my sick bed, the delegates of SD 10 elected their national representatives. My candidacy was done. My presence no longer needed.
I did, however, have a brief say in my defeat in a bid for a seat on the platform committee.
Keep the party platform simple. Use the KISS principal (i.e., Keep it Simple, Stupid). A party platform with too many planks paints a candidate into a corner. Resist adopting personal ideological agendas that stir needless controversies.
... And so, ended the quest of Eddie Griffin to become a national delegate for Senator Barack Obama.