United, not Divided
I’ve been following Kristen Forbriger on Twitter since last weekend when she took us all to the Barack Obama rally in Philadelphia via her live tweets and made it feel like we were there, along with Baratunde and a few others.
Kristen’s post about what it was like to work as a volunteer for the campaign in Philadelphia really drives home the essence of the Obama campaign:
I found myself in a converted storefront location at 3 am, debating the best way to prioritize a stack of manila envelopes with three relative strangers. These four sleep deprived people – from very different ethnic, cultural, and regional backgrounds – were in an argument over the most efficient way to utilize volunteer resources to maximize voter turnout for Barack Obama in a particular area of Philadelphia.
No, we didn’t call Barack on his cell phone to show us the way. But I can promise you that his inspiration brought us together in the first place, and his influence gave us the drive and ability to accomplish great things over the subsequent 48 hours.
Amazing that any volunteer would be working for anyone, much less a politician, at 3am. I guess in an Obama administration there would always be someone there to answer the call. (yeah, yeah, it was a cheap attempt at humor, but seriously…3 AM? wow.)
Out of 3 am conflicts, resolution and this truth:
The best leaders keep all our eyes on the bigger prize, and help us agree on a practical way to attain it. I was very lucky to work with at least one person during the PA primary campaign built in this model of Barack Obama, who is a “community organizer first, a politician second.”
This isn’t the first time I’ve read testimonials like this, though Kristen’s is one of the more eloquent and passionate ones. If you look at the way Pennsylvania’s final result went down, you’ll see that the erasure of that infamous “double-digit” lead was largely the result of those baby boomer GenX middle-aged black white professional blue collar volunteers who stayed up until 3am and figured out how to get shit done, delivering a sharp cut to Senator Clinton’s presumed victory in Pennsylvania.
This is what we need. Someone who can organize and mobilize this country to get it done. No more gridlock, no more petty infighting. Just putting our eyes on the prize (restoring our country, economy and yes, national morale) and getting it done.