23 Aug 2014
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Day 1: The Treehouse Winery and More

by Steven Elbaum

This will be updated as more posts come in. It starts at the top with Monday morning.

Connecticut delegates arrived over the weekend and throughout the day and we had our first official event at the Treehouse Winery outside of Charlotte. As you can see from the attached picture, despite some intermittent showers, we were treated to a barbeque in a pastoral, vineyard setting. The winery took its name from its elaborate treehouses. 

State (and town) party chairwoman Nancy DiNardo gave a well-received welcome speech – in which she reminded us what differentiates us from the delegates to the recent Tampa convention. The Connecticut delegation is divided equally between men and women, our ages range from the early 20s to the early 80s. We come from all parts of the Nutmeg State, we are ethnically diverse and we were all elected.

Back in our hotel rooms at the airport Doubletree hotel, we went through our swag bags filled with name tags, official looking programs, union-logoed “thundersticks”, cause items from NARAL and  goodies from near (Milford magazine) and far (brown sugar from a Florida refiner).

After dinner, our Governor gave a rousing toast as he welcomed us at a cocktail party along with the New Hampshire delegation and implored us to campaign for the ticket in New Hampshire and support our own Chris Murphy. Governor Malloy is in high demand – others mentioned that he had three other events to attend after our 9pm party – even so, he managed to take many photos and great every attendee.

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Downtown Charlotte is all fences, cops and delegates. Very little street traffic, but no shortage of street corner preachers.

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I can't imagine there are any tv cameras elsewhere in America.

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Malloy (fresh from Morning Joe on msnbc), Dodd, Larson, Murphy and Delauro all made the rounds. DNC leader Debbie Wasserman Schultz addressed us.

Then off to Chris Murphy event at Capital Grille.

Downtown Charlotte is all fences, cops and delegates. Very little street traffic, but no shortage of street corner preachers.

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And the clever message delivery award goes to planned parenthood!

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15,000 press credentials were issued.

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One of many pre-speech events at the EMK Institute gathering. Great stories and speeches by Sen Kerry, Dodd, Mayor Mennino, Gov Deval Patrick. All emphasizing that public service is a noble profession.

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Lots of applause for Governor Malloy as he talks about protecting medicare, tax fairness and women's health care. Larson and Courtney and Malloy spent a lot of time with the Connecticut delegation. Larson is a great story teller and Courtney has to be the nicest, most down to earth person in Congress.

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Governor Strickland of OH got a big cheer with "even mitt romney's money needs a passport- it summers on the beaches of the cayman islands and winters on the slopes of the swiss alps."

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Huge roars from the crowd with highlights of the Ted Kennedy- Romney senate debate after Romney declared that he was pro choice and Kennedy retorted that HE was pro choice and romney was multiple choice!

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Connecticut delegation has great seats, stage right and at mid court.  Better than the tv networks.

Rosa Delauro spoke tonight along with other female leaders. The CT delegation danced along with the music, taking her lead as she exited.

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Dick Blumenthal and Chris Murphy joined the CT dinner.  Blumenthal's introduction of Murphy as the next JUNIOR senator got a standing ovation.

Murphy's speech was lively and full of applause lines regarding fighting for health care and women's rights. He reminded us of the tea party's takeover of the Tampa convention and what his race for senate means for the balance of power in DC.

He also mentioned that. McMahon has outspent Murphy 8 to 1 and has had the luxury of not responding to reporters.

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Lots of applause for Governor Malloy as he talks about protecting medicare, tax fairness and women's health care. Larson and Courtney and Malloy spent a lot of time with the Connecticut delegation. Larson is a great story teller and Courtney has to be the nicest, most down to earth person in Congress.

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