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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Obama’s Expected Record Breaking Portland Crowd

posted by on May 18 at 12:46 PM

The line to get in to see Barack Obama on the Portland Waterfront today, according to one cop I spoke with, stretched from the waterfront, on the east edge of downtown, to the South Park Blocks on the other side of downtown. The officer pegged the line at 20,000, and the doors hadn’t even opened yet. People who biked here have turned the railing along the waterfront’s bike and pedestrian path into the longest bike rack I’ve ever seen (every bike rack and parking meter for blocks in every direction is at capacity).

Local and national reporters are grumbling that we’re three hours away from actually seeing Barack Obama. Portland’s indie-rock darlings the Decemberists are going on at 2:30, followed by the candidate.

But it takes that long to shuffle tens of thousands of people through security. One of the communications staffers herding the press says they’re expecting 50,000 people at the waterfront today—Obama’s biggest crowd ever. (He pulled in a record 35,000 in Philadelphia, four days before Pennsylvania’s April 22 primary, and he’s had a 30,000 crowd when Oprah took the stage beside him. Take that, Oprah—the Decemberists can kick your ass!)

Stay tuned for photos and updates.

RSS icon Comments


good to hear him kick ass in response to bush the other day re: the appeasement charge is fear peddling.

Hope he calls it like it is:

They lied and peddled fear, they surrendered our strength of ideals, they weakened our security, all for political gain.

That's not just wrong -- it's treasonous.

Posted by PC | May 18, 2008 1:26 PM

Dear Amy,

Everybody knows that we truly fear for the life of our beloved candidates and I would like to call to arms all the hyper-vigillante's to make sure the Decemberist's don't blow their only chance at getting back at me for not attending Chris Ballews impromptu funeral pryor to yeterdays pre-emptive attempt to humilliate him yeti again.

My number one rule in gamebling today is reminding POTUS that he owes me a hand up through the lotto stage re-direct program for interesting ama-grunt songsters. Chris I hate you and your going down.

Posted by danielbennettkieneker | May 18, 2008 1:30 PM

Breaking news: Obama draws really, really big crowds.

I hope for both the organizers and the attendees that the organizers are aware of that fact by now.

Posted by Steve | May 18, 2008 1:59 PM

Who is this Barack Obama again? Is he a rock star or something?

Posted by Cato the Younger Younger | May 18, 2008 2:02 PM

Breaking news: lots of people in Portland flock to see US Senate's most liberal member. I expect to see the Stranger's story on this "phenomenon" picked up by the AP and Reuters.

Posted by joykiller | May 18, 2008 3:12 PM

Maybe we could have seen this kind of turnout if we had a waterfront instead of that god awful viaduct!


Posted by Cale | May 18, 2008 4:05 PM

Or if Obama had come here in sunny May rather than dreary Feb. Also, because he has nailed down the nomination now/HRC is no longer viable, those who would otherwise support her are more likely to go hear him. Unity rah!

Posted by PC | May 18, 2008 4:35 PM

The "most liberal member of the Senate" branding, from the National Review, is a pretty silly thing to repeat. In 2003, John Kerry was listed as the most liberal member; it's a scare tactic and a line for the 527 commercials at best.

Obama, with his comprehensive reform policies, across-the-aisle work on ethics, and constitutional knowledge, is more liberal than Russ Feingold (who calls himself a socialist)? Joe Biden? You don't have to be very bright to call bullshit on that.

The same "study" listed Ron Paul as only the 178th most conservative rep in the House... and McCain missed too many votes to even be included in the count for senators.

Posted by V | May 18, 2008 4:48 PM

Y'know, when I first heard about that "most liberal member of the Senate" tag being placed on Obama, I thought, "Hmm... Where have I heard this before?"

Oh yeah. John Kerry. 2004. What a coincidence that of all the 50 or so Democrats in the Senate, the very one running for president gets the "most liberal "honor two election cycles in a row! Gee, what are the odds of that?! Anyway, Obama himself has done a pretty good job debunking the methodology of this report.

BTW, I think the real albatross in this category is going to be the fact that John McCain voted with George W. Bush 95% of the time in 2007.

P.S. If by some chance Obama picked Chuck Hagel as his running mate, I'm sure some study would magically emerge, "Hagel rated most liberal Republican in the Senate."

Posted by cressona | May 18, 2008 6:30 PM

The Decembrists opened for O? Gee, that must have been, uh, erudite...yet effete...

Posted by Bob-O | May 19, 2008 7:12 AM

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