Town Hall

I’m watching Barack Obama’s town hall meeting right now live on There’s lots to say about it, so I’m going to attempt an experiment and try to liveblog it. We’ll see how it goes! Feel free to jump in with comments right now if you’re reading!

1:47 EST: Thinking about it some more, I don’t actually see the added value in liveblogging here instead of normal blogging, so for now I think I’m going to stick with normal blogging. That way, I get to make the same points, but with better wording and clarity. It was worth a try, though.

1:07 EST: Okay, it’s the last question now, and it’s also time for me to get back to work. It’s amazing how little actually is said at these sorts of meetings.

1:05 EST: Lots of Obama’s framing and messaging is different this week than it was last week. Here’s a nice blog post with some context from this morning.

12:55 EST: Yay! A solar panel maker is speaking! Interestingly, Elkhart has a pretty great environmental movement, especially for a small town in a red state. Credit is due to good government in the town and the presence of two or three Superfund sites in the area.

12:54 EST: The crowd is also very angry and populist. Lots of anger at “fat cats” and Washington politicians squabbling.

12:50 EST: While Obama claimed the crowd wasn’t screened, the crowd was cheering and chanting “O-BA-MA” when he started. Makes sense, given his ~70% approval rating. I’m glad he’s popular, but not totally comfortable with those chants now that he’s actually President.

12:48 EST: I’m generally staying away from commenting on the substantive policy statements Obama is making, since I don’t want to comment on policy without more time to think things through and research the context.

12:44 EST: Someone in the crowd just challenged him about something related to Sean Hannity (I couldn’t hear it exactly). It’s very refreshing to see a town hall meeting where they don’t screen their guests.

12:41 EST: First comment is that he’s speaking in Elkhart, Indiana. It’s a pretty interesting choice of locale. Elkhart county has the highest unemployment in the country right now (15%), up from 6% six months ago when he last visited. It’s also in Indiana, which I think sends a nice message to Republicans since Obama won Indiana! (I know, it’s still hard to believe!) Finally, I’ve actually spent time in Elkhart, so it has some personal resonance for me.


2 Responses

  1. I like the idea that you had to put down what you were thinking at the time. It’s neat to read. Also, I completely agree with you on the ‘Obama’ chants at this point.

  2. Thanks! That’s good to hear, I guess I’ll have to think about it some more

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