Sunday, September 2, 2012

Garden Party

Posted By on Sun, Sep 2, 2012 at 8:23 PM

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Most all of the Arkansas delegation to the DNC enjoyed their first official event in Charlotte—the Welcome Reception at the gorgeous and humid Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden—along with the delegations from Missouri, Kansas, and West Virginia. The group was welcomed by Paul Ryan's predecessor as House Budget Committee Chair, former US Rep. John Spratt from neighboring South Carolina. What was most striking was the diversity shown across the four delegations—a strong contrast with the GOP convention last week. The delegates differ in almost demographic category ...and, based on a few conversations, there were also differences in ideology as shown in the New York Times' stylish Sunday analysis.

Arkansans are deeply involved in events large and small at the DNC this year. First and foremost, attorney Clark Jennings of Little Rock is Director of Operations for the Convention. His wife Mary Rutherford Jennings is also doing a stint in the finance office.

National conventions are, of course, also about social events that allow folks to reconnect and network. One of the most vibrant events of Sunday night in Charlotte was the Democratic Governors' Association's outdoor Kick-Off Party downtown. Folks who've worked on congressional staffs and on campaigns across the country shared war stories and gossip. In general, Dems feel pretty optimistic, relieved that Gov. Mitt Romney failed to take full advantage of the opportunity his convention presented last week.

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