Wednesday, March 22, 2006


Funny that I should start Drinking Liberally  after finally starting to drink conservatively. And after two weeks and two candidates, maybe it's significant that my beverage of choice is Two Hearted Ale.

Tonight was Amy Klobuchar and last week was Ford Bell, subjecting themselves to a nouveau Nordeast bar and a pack 'o libruls, plus one conservative blogger. (Boy, am I glad I'm not still trying to wear my too-tight blue oxford dress shirts to bars.)

Both candidates charmingly played the kinder card. Bell came after a child's concert. Klobuchar stayed late, but exercised the daughter-reading-Sense and Sensibility-together escape clause.

Either would be a distinct improvement over Mark (I'm 3% Independent of the President) Kennedy.

Bell seemed a bit gawky when he arrived, the teetotaler at the orgy. But he requested a Bell's Best Brown off the chalk board, and when it came time to discuss issues, he changed personas — no longer the ill-at-ease socializer, but a man with fire in his heart and facts at his disposal. A man who, like Mark Dayton, could have coasted through life, but chose to give something back. I'm not entirely sure what drove Ford Bell to run for Senator, but it was not a career move.

Amy Klobuchar's fire is evident from the start. She is practiced at seeming comfortable, and I don't mean that in a bad way. She acknowledged people and identified bloggers like  Norwegianity's Wege and Centrisity's Flash and Power Liberal's Smarty as easily as if they'd been Torii and KG and Dante. (And believe me, all these guys are much harder to pick out of a crowd.) This was not that phony pointing to people in the crowd and winking crap that politicians do. Maybe Bush couldn't pick Abramoff out of a line up, but I sincerely believe Klobuchar has book marked Power Liberal.

So what does it all mean? Am I gonna analyze personalities or issues here?

Well, we were in a bar, folks, and it was loud. We were drinking beer. (Klobuchar made a valiant stab at downing her Miller Lite. The rest of us had no such trouble.)

I asked Bell about correcting income disparities in America, and he responded with invest in alternative energy as if it were the Apollo program. I asked Klobuchar if she could put her name on one bill next year what would it be, and she said, reform health care and make sure kids are covered. Plus, she slipped in a second priority — a 20/20% national standard for ethanol content in gasoline/energy from renewables.

Let's not kid ourselves. Freshman Senators aren't going to be transforming much of anything. All we want now is for the river to change direction, and I would get in boat with either of these two.


Blogger Flash said...

Nice post, I agree with you on this 100%

""All we want now is for the river to change direction, and I would get in boat with either of these two.""


10:21 AM  
Blogger Douglas said...

How dare you diss my wearing a too-tight blue oxford dress shirt to a bar!

Seriously, the account of the evening is up at MOBANGE! now. Flash said I did a good job of covering the evening.

1:30 PM  
Blogger Charlie Quimby said...

Think of it as empathy from one who has retired said shirts from his wardrobe. Actually, I think it's cool you can show up and not pelt or be pelted. The world needs more such civil exchanges.

1:42 PM  

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