I was lucky enough to be invited to the swearing in, and my employers, having endorsed Ms. Edwards from the start, we happy to grant me a day off. I happily made the trek from Westminster to the PG County campaign office where a SUPER AWESOME PARTY BUS would whisk supporters and politicos alike away to the capital.
I missed the SUPER AWESOME PARTY BUS by 5 minutes, as did several other supporters, one an older volunteer, the other a campaign intern with a very nice vehicle, (a SUPER AWESOME PARTY CAR, if you will).
We hurried to the capital, somehow found a close parking spot, and met up with the group. We were ushered through numerous security checkpoints. I was alternating between conversation with the older volunteer and an older gentleman who seemed extremely familiar, but whose name I could not place. I am ashamed to admit that I can still not recall his name, though he was familar with me and my blogging work. As we were waiting for an elevator, he caught Charlie Rangel by the arm and whispered something about economic policy. Awesome.
I sat next to him the gallery, and we attempted to point out as many familiar congresscritters as possible.
Him: "Oooh, thats gotta be Waxman."
Me: "No idea who some of these guys are..."
Him: "You know, right there must be the spot where Sumner was nearly caned to death..."
You know, normal conversation for two bloggers. Oh yes, did I mention he is also a blogger. He was familiar because he was one of the few, the proud, the invited. In other words, he was one of the bloggers who attended Senator Madaleno's blogger breifings.
There we sat, for at least 15 minutes while the house voted unanimously in favor of some amendment. We arrived too late to hear the substance.
I suppose I should mention that Donna supporters had filled nearly half of the gallery. When Donna entered, though it appears to be cut out of the cspan coverage, we went nuts. As the cheers rained down, confused looking congresscritters turned to us. Some staring in disbelief, some cheering along with us, flashing thumbs up. Finally, it was time.
Its not every day you get to see United States history up close and in person, and I can't really describe how it felt. Pelosi, first female house speaker, swearing in Edwards, the first black female to represent the Free State in congress, was impressive in it's magnitude.
Following the clapping, we took a long walk to the reception room. Fruit, cheese, wine, and lots of people who looked and most likely were more powerful and important than me, including Chris Van Hollen and some people who I may or may not have recognized as prominent national bloggers. I grabbed a glass of wine and hugged the wall. I was here to see Donna, say thanks and good luck, and perhaps get a picture with the wonderful woman whose election we all worked so hard on. So, did things work out?
Ok, so maybe I don't look my best. In fact, for someone who walks 4 hours in the sun every night, I look downright pasty, globular, and after a trek through a capital, a bit ripe. Donna was gracious and kind to her supporters, myself included, just as she was at a community meeting where I spoke to her earlier in the year.
It was the perfect ending to a well run campaign. People powered from start to finish. In November, i anticipate things only getting better, with an increased Democratic majority, a Democratic President, and Donna getting re-elected to a full term.
I caught a ride to the PG office on the SUPER AWESOME PARTY BUS, which, it turns out was free of partying, and with Donna left in DC, somewhat drained of awesomeness. Thankfully, everyone who had a glass of wine at the reception was able to sleep it off on the ride and return home safely.
Sorry for the lateness of this post. Old news, I know, but damn cool.