20,000 for Obama?

I’m posting from my PDA so I can’t link to the story, but the Atlanta Journal-Constitution says 20,000 showed up at Tech today to see Obama.

Any eyewitnesses?

35 comments

  1. Brian from Ellijay says:

    I must have really underestimated the crowd. I was standing in one of the parking lots right below the library, so I had a pretty good look at the crowd. It did not look like 20,000 to me. But the way they were shoving registration down peoples throat, the campaign should have a pretty good count. Also, with him being an hour late, people were coming and going.

    BTW, the crowd was not all that demographically diverse.

  2. Trevor Southerland says:

    In response to the huh’s… I am now a Democrat. People leave the Libertarian Party for various reasons, I have mine. Some people go to the Republican Party (such as Chris Farris) while some (though certainly less) of us go to the Democratic Party.

    And in response to: “BTW, the crowd was not all that demographically diverse.”

    I was there, I saw blacks, whites, latinos, asians, rich, poor, gay, straight, atheist, Christian, Muslim, Jewish… I don’t understand how much more diversity you need. The Obama Camp is by far the most diverse campaign I’ve ever seen, and it’s awesome to be a part of this.

  3. StevePerkins says:

    Black, white, asian, and Latino I can understand.

    However, were the rich, poor, gay, straight, atheist, and religious wearing name tags with the information on it or something?

  4. Rick Day says:

    Steve, drop it. GOPeach, you wouldnt take a bullet for your Jesus, much less America.

    I’m a solid Independent ‘classic liberal’. Like Trevor, I too am a former Libertarian on the Obama bandwagon.

    I have been for several months. I’ve already raised some money for him and am going to use my venue to hold future fund raisers.

    As a white businessman with an income in the top 1% bracket, you can count me within the diversity that supports the fresh change Obama represents.

    Run scared, you establishment people, run very scared.

  5. David says:

    Rick has it right in one aspect. Hillary is the one who’s truly running scared. Obama out raised her in primary cash and he has more charisma that anyone else on either side. This is being said by a 100% Republican, too. It’s too bad that Fred Thompson has cancer. I don’t think folks will vote for a sick candidate and that’s too bad. He has the bearing of being ‘presidential” and in our image is everything society, that matters. But Obama certainly is lighting fires wherever he goes. Beware, Hillary!

  6. sndeak says:

    Not diverse?! I took a bunch of picture at the event. Their people there if all ages and walks of life as well as ethnicities and races.

  7. RJL says:

    As a native Georgian, returning after a three-decade absense, it’s fascinating to observe this “discussion.” The indicators are that 2008 will be another significant “change” year in American politics, whether or not that change reaches Georgia and to what extent. But to deny such indicators (the AJC and fire marshall were wrong on the 20,000 crowd count — were they off by, what, 20% or 30% or 50%?) is a silly as the accompanying rationalizations (Obama wouldn’t take a bullet — unlike, say, Bush or Cheney or Chambliss or Gingrich or Romney or . . .?). It is undeniable that the pace and scope of Obama’s grassroots organizational and fundraising capacity is unprecedented. And it may indeed have implications on a broader scale in Georgia which cannot be overcome by rationalizations.

  8. LemonLyman says:

    sndeak: in English, s’il vous plait? Not sure exactly when the employment of grammar become an option.

    …And there were not very many ‘rich’ folks at the event, nor were there many latinos–and there certainly were not 20,000 people there. The fire marshall overestimated, and he’s the one that reported to the papers.

    And Rick– I think that I’m far from alone in my intent when I ask you, politely, to not remark negatively on the integrity or dedication of our Veterans. You owe them–don’t forget that.

  9. RJL says:

    LemonLyman — Ibid at 11:01 re the crowd count. So how far off was it, in your opinion?

    As to veterans (I am one, Army, Viet Nam), we do not get an automatic pass to remark negatively on the integrity — “Obama is a wus” –or dediction — “I doubt he (Obama) would ever take a bullet…” — of a U.S. Senator and fellow citizen who has the courage to run for national office, whether you support him or not.

  10. StevePerkins says:

    Is this entire thread an April Fool’s joke, two weeks too late?!? I suppose it’s not unfathomable that Trevor would get burned out from his leadership position and want to explore one of the major parties. Still, it seems odd that I had heard not a whisper about it from anybody.

    Also, I’ve never even heard of Rick Day in Libertarian circles… his comment above reads like something I would write if I were doing a Colbert-style parody of affluent white liberals… and his name links to a supposed “think tank” called “GOP Lobby, Inc”.

    Last but not least, I don’t know what to make of the level of “foaming at the mouth” Kool-Aid devotion I’m seeing in the thread, for a guy that so far as I know hasn’t yet taken a real position on anything. Either there are some shenanigans afoot here, or this guy has charisma to charm the panties off nuns. This is just Scientology-weird.

  11. Donovan Head says:

    Believe it or not, I was there, I have a friend that I work with that is an Obama supporter and she asked if I wanted to go with her to see him…I thought it would be very interesting, and Im not one of those types of Republicans that would refuse to listen to what the other side and other candidates have to say, that’s why I aslo went to see Hillary speak last year in Buckhead…I think this was a good experience because as the election becomes closer and many of us get nasty or negative towards the Democratic nominee, I will think twice because I saw them speak, I saw that they too love America and have a few good ideas, and are also good human beings….don’t worry though, I’m very much still behind Giuliani and will deffinatly vote for/ work like crazy for that campaign in the primaries, and for who ever our nominee will be.

    Now, this is what I saw at the Obama rally. I was 40 ft away from the stage, and as we were waiting for him to come out, I was constantly scanning the crowd in amazement. There was easily 20,000 people there.. I would have guessed more myself. It was a VERY diverse crowd: all ages, all races, and of course there were a significant number of gay people there as well. What suprised me was I had always viewed (not Obama) but his supporters as cold and to an extent less patriotic. I was wrong, these people were nice, funny and fun loving and it was very
    clear that they love America just as much as we do.

    When he spoke, I was amazed, he was the most charismatic speaker I have seen in my life. I’ve seen President Bush, John McCain, Mitt Romney, and Hillary Clinton, not to mention Herman Cain lol speak in person..there was no comparison. This man has a gift that not many have, and we saw how far that took Bill Clinton. His message was not near as negative as I thought it woud be, he skillfuly touched on issues that electrified his base, yet also could relate to the average American. His message stayed inclusive and “hopeful”…rather than screaming and complaining like Howard Dean loved to do, this man addressed problems our country faced and showed how “comming together” would solve them…I know as Im writing this, it probably comes across as nieve of something…but you really had to have been there to see what Im talking a bout. This man just captured the crowd and had your attention the entire time, with a loud and clear voice ( with a noticible new slight southern accent lol). You would have thought these people were teenage girls at a rock concert, they really loved him and were inspired….and as he was working the crowd, I got to shake his hand lol.

    This really opend my eyes, because if he had this effect on me, an active volunteer in Republican campaigns…imagine what he could do to people who are only leaning one way or another or undecided. He will not be easy to beat wheather he is at the top of their ticket or as Hillary’s VP. Our guys need to step it up big time if we want to win, and there is only one candidate on our side that I believe can win against either Obama or Hillary, and that’s Rudy. Even then, he needs to step up the excitement level and start fundraising more rather than allow the other side’s top tier candidates raise $10million more than him in the 1st qt.

    I predict Obama will win S. Carolia and Georgia’s primaries for sure, and it will be a very interesting race between Hillary and him. I still think he in beatable, but I say to you DO NOT underestimate him.

  12. Jason Pye says:

    Steve,

    You missed the 2005 convention where Rick publicly embarrassed himself by trying to insert anti-Christian rhetoric in the state party platform. His language was defeated by 2/3 of the convention (I made the motion to strike the language).

    He pitched a fit on stage after all this occurred and hasn’t been back since.

    While I don’t agree with inserting religious beliefs into public law, I’m not going to shun people for what they believe, whether they are Protestant, Quaker, Buddhist or Atheist.

  13. I would say it was a pretty diverse crowd, certainly reflective of a Democratic primary in Georgia (about half and half).

    Probably a younger crowd than you find at the voting booth, but nonetheless it was pretty big.

    I’m terrible at estimating crowd size, ie I have no experience and I’m not going to pretend that I’m some sort of expert, but it seems about reasonable to me that there were the same number of people there that I see at the average Thrashers game which would put it in the 15k – 20k range.

    My personal take on Obama is that he doesn’t disappoint. I think many of the people in attendance had already made up their mind about him, and they loved it. At the same time, I’m not sure if he’s quite ready to break out of the small but devoted following he’s got into the mainstream, but we’ll see.

    He certainly has the potential to though, which is more than can be said for McCain and Giuliani.

  14. Holly says:

    I don’t think Rick was saying anything against veterans. I thought he was speaking directly to GOPeach’s comment, and hers alone.

    I don’t know why people are getting so upset by the numbers. Can we call it a draw and say “lots” showed up? It sounds like a good number, whether it was 10,000 or 25,000.

    Obama has lots of charisma, and yes, David is right – much about winning elections has to do on how a person presents himself or herself. I’d say that Barack Obama presents himself very well. It’s entirely possible to win an audience over without saying anything (from body language, gestures, posture, and the like), and Obama has that quality more than any other candidate, with the exception, perhaps, of John Edwards, who I think people count out of the Democratic nomination too fast.

    All that said, Obama’s attracting new people into the fold, people who don’t normally get excited about elections. At the very least, it’s good to see these people get interested in the electoral process.

  15. Donovan, I would imagine your assessment is correct. It is undeniable that Obama is attracting much attention. It’s really a gamble with him, because he’s not had much of a public life. However, his message is resonating because people are tired of the war, tired of the rape and pillage of the taxpayers and tired of spineless politicians who will say anything and do anything to gain power and prominence.

    The same enthusiasm that is propelling him is the same impetus that brought down our majority. If our Party still has not gotten the message that Americans want a government that is honest and fair, then we’re going to find ourselves in another rut.

    The same opportunity that is provided to Obama presents itself to our Party as well. I hardly doubt our side is washed up and worn out. We’re facing a more difficult situation, because of the scandals of the past few years, but thank God, most of those have been exposed and removed. What fills the vacuum has yet to be seen. I’m sure there are plenty of competent voices of reason out there.

  16. StevePerkins says:

    What exactly IS his message, Maurice? If Obama’s different… if he does have a spine and isn’t just saying anything for power… then this would imply that he takes firm positions on things that many within the Democratic base would find unpopular. However, I don’t know what any of those positions ARE.

    The only thing I know about him is that he’s a hell of a speaker, he’s “historic”, and is getting tons of mileage out of the fact that he was the only one of the three Democratic front-runners who voted against the Iraq war. Is his popularity really a miracle, or just the result of some lucky timing and a gamble paying off?

    I’m not trying to be snarky… I’m honestly curious. When I ask his admirers to go into greater depth about their support, all I hear is, “Uhh… err… duh… well, you just had to be there!” Never a straight, rational answer that goes beyond platitudes about “bringing people together”, etc. To me that smells like Kool-Aid, which has a tendency to go sour over the long haul of a campaign. However, I wouldn’t mind taking a small sip just to see what all the fuss is about… so I hope you guys will let the word be known next time he schedules an event in Atlanta.

  17. Steve, beats me. I haven’t followed the man. From what I hear he gives a strong motivating message of self reliance and preaches good morals. Other than that I don’t know. But that is precisely my point. He hasn’t had much of a public life that is out there for scrutiny. But folks are tired of the ranting and are wanting to feel good about something. That is why he is a gamble. It’s undeniable that folks are taking a gamble on him.

    In a warped way it is the same dynamic that propelled Ronald Reagan. People want to believe in something larger than what they have and want to see the silver lining. What have we delivered in the past few years. Our icons have dived into scandal and have preached a hypocritical message. The masses have turned the volume down, but not off. Our message isn’t necessarily wrong. We simply need new voices.

  18. Trevor Southerland says:

    Okay, sorry, this is a little off… but have you guys ever heard of the Capitol Steps… a comic group from DC.

    They have a good Barack thing: “A Leader like Barack” set to “Leader of the Pack”.

    It’s currently on their homepage, http://www.capitolsteps.com... like him or hate it, this is just funny.

  19. GOPeach says:

    Rick,

    You are a schmuck!

    I have already litterally taken a bullet.

    I was a human shield in an armed robbery when I was 23 years old. I lost a kidney over it.

    I was working as a government social worker in Perry Homes helping a 14 year old girl learn to care for her baby. The girl and her baby boy were spared. And I thank Jesus!

    No regrets!

  20. StevePerkins says:

    I know I’m going to regret sticking my nose into this little sidebar thing, just as soon as I click the “Submit” button. Here it goes anyway… what is all the “take a bullet” chatter about? Is there some inside joke about Obama I missed out on?

  21. GOPeach says:

    Obama is anti -war, anti-gun, anti- 2nd ammendment…. BUT he is pro- kill the unborn black babies born to poor teens in the projects.

    He is a wus.

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