Friday, May 30, 2008

My Democratic Adventure - Day 15

This is my fifteenth day as a member of the Democratic Party. I find that nothing has really changed for me. I still feel like an independent. I've always been pretty liberal, especially about social issues. Though in the last couple years I've started to warm up to a few conservative Republican ideas like local/state control (especially when it comes to education). Does that make me a "Blue Dog"?

I'm still trying to decide, but I still think I'll go back to being an independent after the June 3rd primary. Oh well.

Bill Clinton is Coming to Canton!

Well, I was pretty shocked today. I learned that former President Bill Clinton is going to be coming to Canton, South Dakota tomorrow. Wow.

Having a former President of the United State of America in Canton is HUGE! I know I just registered as a Democrat to vote for Obama next week, but it's exciting to get President Clinton in town. Who knows if South Dakota will be this important to the next presidential race, so this might be a once in a lifetime opportunity.

It looks like he's coming around lunch time. Maybe he'll stop by the Garden of Eat'n for some of the best sandwiches in this part of the country. *hint hint* Or maybe he'll stop at the Depot and check out the Lawrence Brother's monument and see Canton's contribution to history. *hint hint* He'll be in Jack Fox Park, so maybe he'll comment on our brand new county courthouse. *hint hint*

I also hope some of our commissioners will make an appearance, like our new mayor Bruce Braaten. *hint hint*


Monday, May 19, 2008

My Nineteen Days as a Democrat

I never thought it would happen. I've been living blissfully happy as an independent voter since I turned 18. But last Friday night I, Haggs T. Haggardson, registered with the Democratic Party.

I went to the Barack Obama rally in Sioux Falls on Friday night with a few friends. It was a lot of fun. We were apparently sitting in the Augustana College section. There were a lot of students with Augie t-shirts around us and they were all studying for finals while waiting for the program to start.

What a great program. Sen. McGovern gave a wonderful intro. He was hilarious! I loved his Lincoln quotes. And Sen. Daschle's speech was very energetic. All good stuff that successfully built up the main event.

As my nerdy friends might say, Obama's speech was "full of win." I was captivated by it the entire time, so much so I almost wish it would've been longer. I loved to hear him talk about South Dakota's potential for alternative energy. He also made a lot of great points about supporting our veterans. The longer I listened to him, the more I felt a growing sense of hopefulness about the future of this country. I strongly believe Barack Obama can heal some of the problems that have infected our country. When the speech was over, I just had to register. I was going to give the SD primary a pass because I figured I'd get my chance to vote for Obama in November. But something about the speech just made me want to vote for Obama as soon as I could. Maybe hope is more powerful than I thought.

So I've been a Democrat for almost four days now. I've been fighting the urge to become a vegan, listen to NPR, buy a Prius and install solar panels on my roof... but I don't know how long I can hold out. And last night I had a dream about wanting to tax the air we breathe. I wonder what that means?

But seriously, I'm excited to vote in my first Democratic primary. Unfortunately I'm not sure how long I'll remain a Democrat once the primary is over. I'll most likely go back to being an independent (though I'm open to being bribed with an X-Box 360 to get me to stay *hint hint*).

I'll try to keep everyone updated on my crazy adventures in the Democratic Party.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Bruce Braatan Is Canton's New Mayor

Well, Canton has a new mayor and his name is Bruce Braaten.

For those unfamiliar with the city manager form of government, every year once the three new commissioners are sworn in they then pick a mayor from the group. If the current mayor wanted, I imagine he or she could've run for the position again. But Canton's mayor, Jim Bolin, didn't run for re-election to the city commission (instead, he's running for the state House. Go Bolin!). Commissioners nominate who they think would be a good mayor and if there's more than one nominee, they vote.

A funny thing happened this time though. I talked with someone who was at Monday night's meeting and apparently there were two nominees and they each got four votes. Normally there would be a tie-breaker in the ninth commissioner, but one was missing. When that happened the commissioners looked over at the city attorney for what to do. The ninth commissioner was supposed to come late, so it was decided to defer the vote until he got there. The other option was the re-vote, but only if someone would change their mind. But by the end of the meeting, when the commission went into executive session, he still hadn't shown up. So the citizens who were at the meeting left thinking Canton wouldn't have a mayor until the next meeting two weeks away (though that's not a huge deal since a commissioner mayor has mostly ceremonial powers).

But that last commissioner must've shown up before the meeting adjourned because today's Canton paper says Bruce Braaten was elected. Strangely, it was a 6-3 vote, so someone changed their minds anyway. Oh well, it makes for a funny story.

Congrats to Bruce! I know I was very hard on him last year when he was part of the group wanting to change Canton's government. If I said anything he was offended by I sincerely apologize. From what I've heard and observed, Bruce Braaten has done an excellent job on the commission. So I have faith that he will be an excellent mayor for Canton.

Sen. McGovern Switches to Obama

I logged into Google News like I do every morning, and the very first headline I see is "McGovern, former Clinton backer, urges her to drop out."

Wow! Not only has he switched his endorsement to Obama, but he's also suggesting she get out of the race. This is not good for Clinton. Could McGovern be the first drip in an upcoming tidal wave of delegate switches? I wonder just how many superdelegate have been waiting for a good enough reason to switch?

And what does this mean for Clinton's visit tomorrow? Will she cancel it like she cancelled her morning show appearances today? I mean, does she have any SD superdelegate support anymore? They usually like to bring a local superdelegate with them in these appearances.

UPDATE: I had MSNBC on in the background and about 30 seconds after I hit "Publish Post" there McGovern was on the phone with them talking about this. I think this will turn out as a better switch than the Bill Richardson thing was because McGovern called them ahead of time.