Saturday, April 19, 2008

Lancaster - midtrip bulletin - focus on Franklin and Marshall University



The Signature Pin, mentioned below.

Spent all day today in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, chatting with potential Clinton voters, especially on and around the campus of Franklin and Marshall, 13th oldest institution of higher education in the U.S. (fun fact learned today). I focused on younger people, out of habit, I think (I am a professor, although for law and graduate students, not undergrads).

When I began walking the campus, I expected to see many more Obama fliers than Clinton ones, but they were about half and half. I was wearing a Hillary signature pin, and that caught people's eye, and got conversations going. Students asked good questions and were especially interested in:
  • Senator Clinton's plan to reintroduce federally backed low-interest loans for college, with debt-forgiveness for students who perform a post-graduation stint in a public service job - e.g., teaching, police, firefighting.
  • Senator Clinton's emphasis on creating a green-collar economy, one that would provide jobs for basic science and research and development related to reducing carbon footprints and reinvigorating industries like the automobile one. Students quickly spotted the connection between environmentalism, job creation, and better economic opportunities for them and their friends.
Speaking of students, the out-of-state volunteer coordinator at Lancaster headquarter plans to become one again this fall, when he starts law school. Accepted at 16 (yes, 16) law schools, including some of the best in the country, this young man has not had time to think about where he will end up because he has been that busy working for Senator Clinton. He attended an excellent undergraduate institution, has completed a master's degree, and is interested in human rights work.

I learned all this while signing up for more formal canvassing shifts tomorrow. My loyal husband - whose strong support for Senator Clinton can be summed up by his statement of months ago: "It is completely obvious she is the best qualified for the job. How can she NOT win?" - had displayed his usual reserve about meeting people when we arrived at the Clinton office. He did not want to step inside. But he got over it, with a touch of encouragement from me. Once inside he found himself moving some cartons for the women keeping the office organized. Next thing I knew, he was back at my side, offering the out-of-state-volunteer-coordinator and would-be law student our guestroom, so the young fellow can check out Georgetown University Law Center, where he has been accepted and where I am on the faculty. This sort of bonhomie is quite unlikely for my husband, who had already made it clear to the women for whom he moved the cartons that he would most definitely not be canvassing. I mean, that would involve talking to strangers! Apparently, bright about-to-be-students volunteering for Senator Clinton are another matter altogether - they are practically family, and are offered a stay at our house. This primary season is definitely changing people....

Meanwhile, three good souls have donated to Senator Clinton in celebration of Maya Angelou's birthday; and the tally of donations in support of journalist Taylor Marsh is slowly nudging toward $2500. Please help if you can.

Must sleep now. More after tomorrow's fun!

2 Comments:

Anonymous SezU said...

Thanks so much for your great report and hard work. I'm heading for York tomorrow night to spend 2 days volunteering there. I agree with your husband -- it has to be Hill!

April 20, 2008 at 12:18 AM  
Blogger Double Jointed Fingers said...

It is so wonderful to read this. I wish I could travel to Penn. It is so encouraging to read how well Hillary is being represented by the people you speak of. u

April 20, 2008 at 8:43 AM  

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