The Utah Democratic Party held our state convention at the Calvin L. Rampton Salt Palace on Friday and Saturday May 9th and 10th. It was exactly two years ago at the Jefferson Jackson dinner of 2006 that our late great governor Cal Rampton addressed the assembled Democratic Party of Utah as our keynote speaker.
This weekend we nominated Bob Springmeyer to be Utah’s next governor. Here he is looking gubernatorial with his elegant green English 3-speed. The bike comes complete with generator lights and fenders; our next governor comes complete with handsome bow tie.
The convention convened at 5:00pm on Friday May 9th. We delegates were quickly dispatched to our respective district caucuses to elect national delegates. I attended the District 1 Obama caucus room where we listened to over 30 candidates giving two minute speeches telling us why they should be national delegates for Barack Obama. Our caucus was not the largest. District 2 Obama delegates had several more candidates to consider even than we did.
One candidate had lost a son in Iraq. One organized a wildly popular event for Barack Obama to meet some of his supporters who couldn’t be $2300 donors in the short while he spent in Utah. Several talked about being Obama organizers right from the beginning when he declared for President. A few talked about the way Obama has excited the youth of America. Three or more of them were the youth of America running for delegate in their early twenties. One stood up for the reenergized motion of “people of a certain age.” One Utah law professor told the story of meeting Obama in a Chicago gymnasium many years ago where he encouraged her to aspire to and attend his alma mater of Harvard Law School, which she did.
Mayor Corroon, Mayor Becker, and Senator McCoy gave great speeches, too.
I wanted to vote for them all but we could only pick three. It was a very hard decision to make.
I had a family event in the evening and didn’t think I’d make it to the Jefferson Jackson dinner where Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer was speaking. I’d have really liked to hear Schweitzer, a great Western Democrat, but the tickets were sold out before I could be sure I had time to go. Attendees told me later that the Salt Palace sound system wasn’t working right and I might not have been able to hear him speak anyway.
The Dine-O-Round is on this week so I took Amy downtown to Caffé Molise for a fancy dinner of cappelini, garlic, vegetables, sausage, tangy goat milk cheese, gelato, and more for a very low price. You can (and should) get out and try the delights of Salt Lake City dining on the Dine-O-Round program through the 17th.
We returned to the convention after the JJ dinner to find out which delegates had been chosen and the counting was still not done. Thanks to state party executive director Todd Taylor for filling us in on the final results in the comments.