It was hard not to make comparisons. I cannot remember an election when the contrasts were so stark, and seeing both candidates in one day, back to back, was an exercise in mental juxtapositioning (yes, I invented a word) Lets start with size. My estimate was that there were approximately 3,000 people at Hillary’s rally, while I would put Donald’s (yep I am going with first names) at just over 4,000.
Hillary’s campaign organization and volunteers were widespread and busy arranging get-out-the-vote activities. I did not see much active campaign efforts at Donald’s rally, most notable, they did not even collect the tickets which had our contact information. Not surprisingly (Hillary’s rally was the Iowa Democratic Party “Women Win” early vote rally) was predominantly women (I am guessing 70%) who brought their children while Donald’s leaned male and far less children.
Most of all, you can notice a significant difference in tone in their introductions and opening comments. Oh and Hillary had an advance team filled with people like Cecile Richards, head of Planned Parenthood. Donald had a former Celebrity Apprentice.
Curve Two: Moments after arriving at the Hillary event and having established myself in a bleacher with a good view of the crowd, my cell phone went off. My boss had texted me ‘oh my did you pick an interesting day to go to the rallies’ I was speaking to a group of African American women and had no idea what we was talking about. My cell phone lit up with ambiguous messages like ‘what is happening???’ Please people, text in complete sentences! Then finally, ‘was texting because of FBI news…. reopening case against Hillary’. Sigh. I looked up and surrealistically (yep, a new word) watched as attendees faces turned down to their phones and slowly learned the same news. Other worldly.
Curve Three: And the best moment of my day. It occurred at the Trump rally when I met Mike Brown. He defied my assumptions and presented one last turn in a day full of them.