There was a time when I fit in with the Republicans more ‘stealth-fully’.
As a white, bald, bearded, paunchy male in his 50s, I blended in with the crowd. But, alas, today I was out-ed at the opening of the “New Jersey/New York Regional Campaign Headquarters for McCain”. I was recognized upon entering by the former campaign manager for Mayor Marty Marks. Oh well, with fame comes responsibility. Or something like that.
The head of the McCain campaign in New Jersey is Senator Bill Baroni [R-14]. Sounding like the quarterback of a team that has not won a game in many a year, he declared the “New Jersey/New York Regional Campaign Headquarters for McCain” officially open today at 1pm. His counter part from New York, Ed Cox stood by his side.
At this rate---that’s just one headquarters for about every 28 million people---that’s just about 11 ‘regional’ headquarters for a nation of 305,986,357 people. But seriously, folks…
“New Jersey/New York Regional Campaign Headquarters for McCain”. That is a mouthful for a small headquarters, actually located in Perth Amboy [although they like to tout that the HQ is in Woodbridge, that bastion of Democratic activity].
"Woodbridge has the kind of voters that John McCain appeals to all over New York and New Jersey," declared Baroni. His counterpart did not seem quite as positive. Said Cox: "The headquarters had to be somewhere in the region, so we picked New Jersey." Does not sound like a good explanation to the folks back home in the Empire State.
Baroni touted that a coalition of “Reagan Democrats and independents” will win both New York and New Jersey for McCain. He and Cox repeated this mantra at least four times during the 40 minute or so press conference. Of course, it was a tough call whether or not he should be told that Reagan Democrats are either no longer with us may have retired and moved elsewhere. This year the ‘independents’ are leaning Democratic big time. The one word that no Republican dared to speak: George W. Bush. Hmmm….
Also, on hand was Senator Leonard Lance rallying the Republican troops to win the New Jersey/New York region from “Buffalo to Cape May”. Kean Jr. was also there with some blasé comments about how New Jersey is going for McCain this year.
The Baroni/Cox team was battered with questions from the media---101.5FM, the Associated Press, NJN-- about McCain’s chances of winning in a state where no Republican has won state wide since 1997; No presidential candidate has won state-wide since 1988. Where McCain supports off-shore oil drilling in a state where “The Shore” is capitalized. A state that opposes the war in Iraq, that supports some sort of better national healthcare plan.
Overheard dialogue, throughout the crowd:
“Off shore drilling is not a problem. So many oil tankers got sunk in WWII. They didn’t have any ‘ecological crisis’ over those ships.”
“OBama doesn’t have enough military experience to oppose the war.”