LJWorld.com weblogs Live from Charlotte: Dispatches from the Democratic National Convention

As Kansas delegates explore Charlotte, Michelle Obama's speech inspires Lawrence resident


Lawrence resident Rex Gardner is representing the Kansas 2nd District as a delegate at the Democratic National Convention. He's volunteered to share his experiences and observations. Last week, Douglas County Republican Party chairman Richard Todd blogged from the RNC.

Well, the first full night of the Democratic national convention is history. My son, Kyle, and I have been asked to share some of our thoughts and experiences with the readers of the Lawrence Journal-World. We are both honored and hope to give at least a flavor of the experiences we are lucky enough to share with thousands of others.

Some of the delegates from Kansas went to the NASCAR race track and enjoyed riding in an actual race car around the track. Some delegates took the bus to Uptown Charlotte. Apparently, in Charlotte, downtown is the highest area and thus, is known as Uptown. Regardless of the slight confusion, everyone made it to where they needed or wanted to be for the day.

Caucuses included small business issues, LGBT issues, women's issues and others. The group I was traveling with was lucky enough to get in on the Women's Caucus shortly before HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius spoke. A number of issues important to women were highlighted. The one issue which appeared to be the most important was health care and the unequivocal demand that legislators stay out of their personal choices.

The convention speakers also spoke on a large range of issues including, our environment, healthcare, our economy and freedom. To say that First Lady Michelle Obama hit a home run, which was said multiple times during the ride back to our hotel, would actually be a bit of an understatement. She hit a grand slam! I'm interested to know if those times in which she was visibly moved came across as well in homes as it it did in the hall.

While walking around Charlotte, I saw a number of t-shirts and buttons that reminded me of different aspects of the campaign that people have been working on back home. Many of those aspects were talked about in speeches tonight. My favorite theme in this campaign is FORWARD.

During Michelle Obama's speech, I had the opportunity to recall another theme, "Mr. President, we've got your back!" The trigger for this was seeing my youngest son's back juxtaposed between the First Lady and me. The pride welled up inside of me as did as the renewed belief that my support of President Obama allowed me to have my son's back as he and his generation move forward.


Carmiletta Penny 5 years, 4 months ago

Thanks for the link to the "truth" about President and Mrs. Obama. Did they think no one would check the facts?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 4 months ago

You went to Brietbart for "fact-checking?"

How ironic.

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 4 months ago

Wow! So Mitt and Ann living on tuna fish and mac and cheese in college while neither one of them held down a job really WAS a struggle while Barry and Michelle driving ten year old cars while they were in college, racking up student loan debt and then both of them working out of college to pay off that debt wasn't. I get it.

msezdsit 5 years, 4 months ago

Typical republican bs. They think all they have to do is make up a bunch of bs and call it fact checking and that exonerates them for the lies they tell. Its real simple, make up what ever you want and call it facts and you have the republican platform. My kids are better than that. But of course they were raised to understand the value of telling the truth and being honest.

Leslie Swearingen 5 years, 4 months ago

I'm not taking the bait. Got to use something better than that.

Randy Leonard 5 years, 4 months ago

Apparently Herr Kobach is right about voter fraud. Republicans have figured out how to vote twice.

Leslie Swearingen 5 years, 4 months ago

Great post! Mrs. Obama is my role model though I fall short at times. I do believe that she should talk about child obesity as it is not only a health issue but an emotional one as the child suffers in school, unable to play sports, unmerciful teasing that probably originated with the teasers family. I don't think people are rude when they bring the attention of these things to people who know that they are not doing right, on one level, but on another don't want to think about it. Then it becomes an argument of, well you can't tell me what to do,etc. etc. The President and Mrs. Obama are so comfortable with babies and children. I will never forget the time that she was holding a crying baby. The president asked her to hand the baby to him and with a skeptical look she did. The baby instantly quieted and gave a huge smile.; Mrs. Obamas jaw dropped and he grinned. This is a family that is so real despite all the pressures around them. This was great for you and your son. When he leaves home he may carry on the wish to participate in events that inform and shape the entire country.

Flap Doodle 5 years, 4 months ago

Did the speech inspire anyone to get a big old 5 Guys bacon cheeseburger?

olddognewtrix 5 years, 4 months ago

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optimist 5 years, 4 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

optimist 5 years, 4 months ago

"my support of President Obama allowed me to have my son's back as he and his generation move forward."

$16,000,000,000,000 in debt. That's nearly double from what the country accrued over more than the previous two centuries. The cost to each American, including his son has increased from around $18,000 to over $30,000, just in the last four years. The damage this has done to our children's future is utterly astonishing. Then the President's solution for our children is to make individual debt easier to achieve in exchange for an education. The only people winning here is Big Education where liberals are made, Big Pharma which will make billions under the "Affordable Care act" and "Green Energy", the boondoggle that continues to drive up costs on all of us including the poor.

Janis Pool 5 years, 4 months ago

Our First Lady gave a speech. No one is being forced to agree. As a nation we seem to feel free speech means we do not have to show respect anymore. And that is just not true. She spoke from her heart and she spoke what she knows to be true. I also listened to Ann Romney's speech. She too, spoke from her heart and what she knows to be true. And therein lies the whole of it.
Now it is up to those who actively get off their computers and go to the polls and vote! May the best candidate win!

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