September 02, 2005

Drafting Dr. Rice!

I'm live-blogging the Goldwater reception at the NFRA, where Glorious Johnson is speaking in favor of drafting Condi Rice for the presidency, an idea that some in the room seem skeptical about as she begins her remarks. Johnson's speech is taking the shape of a history lesson, explaining the relationship between the black population in this country&mdashblack women in particular—and the GOP.

Did you know that Sojourner Truth was a Republican? Did you know that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a Republican? Rest assured that the ladies Councilwoman Johnson spoke of were all represented in my high school women's history class, and they include my all-time favorite black female historical figure, Harriet Tubman, who rescued more slaves than anyone else in American history, and carried a gun as a conductor on the "Underground Railroad." Councilwoman Johnson notes that Tubman was also a soldier, a spy, and a nurse in the Civil War. Johnson furthermore mentions Ida B. Wells, Mary Terrell, and Mary McLeod Bethune as historical figures with ties to the GOP.

Dr. Rice is ready, Johnson assures us, ridiculing the often-repeated notion that Rice needs to go to Alabama or California to run for some small office before she can represent this country in the White House. (What we have in Condi Rice, as Dr. Mason of AFR constantly reminds us, is a candidate who has virtually served an apprenticeship for the highest office in the land.)

Johnson's speaking style is very dynamic, in the gospel-influenced cadence of many African-American orators from the South, and she dominates the room—not an easy task while there's a bar and a buffet in the back. A lot of the NFRA delegates haven't seen each other for a long time, and they are dying to get re-acquainted: Johnson reminds them of the important task facing this party over the next two years in picking the leader of the free world. Her voices carries, and her message resonates. Despite themselves, the socializers in the back are carried up in the excitement, and begin chanting "Condi!" under the councilwoman's direction until the whole room is united.

Johnson is, she tells us, on a mission. It's a mission shared by many others. Most of the people working on this campaign have had a sort of "Eureka!" moment in which they take the idea seriously for a minute or two, and then the light breaks as they realize that Dr. Rice is uniquely positioned to carry on the aspects of the President's legacy that are working well, and to improve on the areas where it isn't.

There's usually a moment in which they consider who can best stand up to Hillary Clinton in a Presidential debate, and then a smile begins to play on their lips. And then they kind of exhale and admit that "there might be something to this. Perhaps she isn't just a fantasy candidate after all."

Get out your surfboard, and ride this wave. Because it's coming at you soon.

Posted by Attila at September 2, 2005 07:05 PM | TrackBack

One can assume that Condi's retail therapy response to the greatest American crisis since 9/11 will not figure large in her election material.

As a Democrat, I am down on my knees praying that Condi Rice runs for the Republican nomination. After watching the Republican Party rip itself apart... President Hillary Clinton? Lacks ambition. We could get a Lawrence Lessig/Hugo Chavez ticket elected.

Posted by: Christophe at September 3, 2005 02:58 PM

Ooh, thanks. I've been meaning to take on "shoe-gate." Stay tuned.

Posted by: Attila Girl at September 3, 2005 05:09 PM

I hold Dr. Rice in high regard and personally find a Rice/Ridy ticket very interesting. Impossible to support as a conservative, but interesting all the same.

Posted by: Joel (No Pundit Intended) at September 3, 2005 09:30 PM

Hey Attila, good job. Can't wait till Condi jumps in. She'll kick Hillary's last ass.

Posted by: Section9 at September 7, 2005 07:19 AM

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