Monday, May 12, 2008

The woeful plight of a Clinton alternate

As she was reading the paper this morning, Chris asked: "What am I going to do at the state convention if Hillary drops out?"

"You can experience some of the outdoor wonders of the Jackson Hole area," I replied.

She laughed (it was weird -- she sounded just like SNL's Amy Poehler imitating Hillary). "I guess I could shop for some new walking shorts."

I assured her that she could find some very nice walking shorts for a pretty penny at one of the chichi shops in the Jackson Town Square.

"Does the hotel accept dogs? I could bring the dog and take long walks."

"I'll check their web site," I said, returning my attention to the always lively world of the blogosphere.

What will she do as a Clinton alternate if her candidate drops out by May 24? What will she do at the convention as an alternate if Clinton stays in?

I don't have all the answers to Chris's questions, but I know where to find them. She's never been to a state convention, but I'm a battle-hardened veteran of these gatherings, having blundered my way through the 2004 convention in Sheridan. As an Obama delegate, I know what I'm supposed to do -- support Obama and my fellow Obama delegates, and be patient as we discuss the arcane details of the party platform. I caution myself not to become angry when I propose platform planks from the floor, as most of them have been decided the day before in platform committee meetings. I know that a lot of horse-trading transpires, as hundreds vie for the 18 delegate slots to the national convention.

My role as an Obama delegate as already earned me some attention from other Obama delegates who want to go to the national convention in Denver. The other day I received a voice-mail message from an Obama delegate in Evanston, which rests in the far southwestern corner of the state that used to be part of Utah (and still is, in some ways).

I also received a two-page letter from Lander's Cynthia Nunley, who's seeking my support in her bid for re-election as National Committeewoman for Wyoming. The letter outlines her qualifications, which includes experience in democratic activities on the local, state, and national level. She supports Howard Dean's "50 state strategy," which leaves no state behind in the race for the presidency, not even us big square states. She also chaired the 2006 campaign of Michelle Hoffman for Wyoming State School Superintendent. Hoffman was the best candidate, but fell to the onslaught of Republican Party-centric voters.

Ms. Nunley writes a very good letter, persuasive, and she'll have my vote -- unless I get even better letters from other candidates for this position. Let's face it -- everything is up for grabs this year. It's an exciting time.

Meanwhile, my wife, the Clinton alternate, makes plans to fill her free time while in Jackson.


jhwygirl said...

Maybe I should come down and show her the area from a local's perspective.


Been thinking about heading down, anyways.

Michael Shay said...

Chris and I are traveling to Jackson May 23. I want to get there by 4 to attend a poetry workshop by Drew Dellinger at the Teton County Library. Ring us up at the Snow King, and we'll get the Teton County perspective from a local.