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Archive of Live From the Democratic Party

11/ 7/06

11:44 PM

Live From the Democratic Party 

Snorting Confetti in the Sheraton Ballroom

During Spitzer's lengthy self-congratulatory remarks, one older Democrat ran out of patience. Bedecked in pro-Hillary and pro-Cuomo gear, this aging voter took to calling out, "Why won't this guy stop talking? I wish this guy would shut up. I've got to find my wife."

And since the party of the working man charges $8 for a domestic beer, it is time indeed to shout inappropriately and go home.

11:28 PM

Live From the Democratic Party 

Spitzer Finds No Time to Practice Victory Speech

The Spitzer live experience isn't much more fun than the albums. No one can turn reviving the liberal dream into a droning yawn quite like our new governor. How can quoting Walt Whitman sound so much like reading an amicus brief?

11:21 PM

Live From the Democratic Party 

Hevesi Speaks From a Secure, Disclosed Location

David Paterson may be onstage telling the crowd that "no lieutenant governor has ever looked like me," but journalists are crouching around the TV watching Alan Hevesi give his acceptance speech. Hevesi was disinvited to this party and he wasn't missed in the ballroom, but he's a bigger attention draw than the second highest-ranking official in the state.

11:16 PM

Live From the Democratic Party 

Lieberman Stays Classy, Boring

After being elected as an independent for his fourth term in the U.S. Senate, Joe Lieberman thanked the people of Connecticut for choosing "progress over partisanship" and the "mainstream over the extreme." He stressed the importance of across-the-aisle cooperation and spoke briefly on the war in Iraq, saying that the two parties needed to work together to bring home the troops without putting Americans at risk. It was a perfectly acceptable Lieberman speech.

Even opponent Ned Lamont, who "helped bring new voters and new volunteers into the political process," got a mention. (Liberal bloggers and the elusive "grass roots" were tastefully omitted.) And he explained his feelings of gratitude in this cheesy, yet somewhat endearing manner: "You know my name was on the bottom of the ballot? You found it. So it seems only fitting that I thank you from the bottom of my heart." Someone give this man a hug.

Lori Fradkin

10:58 PM

Live From the Democratic Party 

Ennui in the Press Room

A female journalist sits down in the chair next to me, reserved for New York's senior political reporter Chris Smith, and sets to work on a plate of chicken. A voice over the loud speaker announces the beginning of Andrew Cuomo's victory speech. "Well," my new colleague says, "I guess we better go listen to him."

Was she sent in from cynical journalist central casting? What a genius.

10:53 PM

Live From the Democratic Party 

Spencer Was Not Cho-Cho-Chosen

Every time a Republican concedes, the D.J. in the ballroom plays "Take Me Out" by Franz Ferdinand. The tune is now on in honor of John Spencer.

A journalist next to me remarks that at this event in 1994, "you could feel the air get sucked out." But tonight Willie Colon is onstage playing a trombone and singing the national anthem, dedicated to "everyone in harm's way." In the back of the ballroom, a guy walks with a sign reading: "One step, two years to the White House."

The D.J. switched it up to "Tainted Love." Is this a reference to John Spencer's much-discussed crush on Hillary Clinton? In his concession speech, Spencer did say they had a nice talk. His heart will go on, even if his career does not.

10:07 PM

Live From the Democratic Party 

Santorum Concedes

Pennsylvania incumbent Republican Rick Santorum began his concession speech at 10 p.m. The kids joined him on stage in Pittsburgh, the younger ones weeping openly. He barely got through the "I just got off the phone with the new Senator-elect" when a plaintive "Oh, no!" came from a female supporter in the audience. "No!"

Given Santorum's poll numbers (current results give him 38 percent of the vote), that wail will not be echoed throughout the brunt of the Keystone State. But it just might make the Santorum family move back to Pennsylvania.

Aileen Gallagher

9:57 PM

Live From the Democratic Party 

The Angriest Democrat in New York

I'm sitting in a large conference room watching TV with about 30 other reporters. Across the hall is a room full of Democrats living a moment that would have seemed impossible only four years ago. They're hugging, laughing, gently shaking it to the Tom Tom Club.

Except for one woman, the angriest Democrat. In a room full of scrubbed party operatives, gymmed up and ginned up, she seems to have wandered into the cordoned-off press area from some other political reality. I can't guess her age, but I assume she's old enough to have voted for Truman. There can be no joy for her tonight until President George Bush has suffered deeply and viscerally. No amount of payback can satisfy her bloodlust.

"That son of a bitch Bush! He's ruining the fucking country. He can't lose bad enough." It was a little loud in there, but I think she described a meeting of her son and the president in which her son "leaned right in his ear and called him an asshole." She wouldn't tell me what her son did for a living.