#3 Gar Byrum from Democratic National Convention, Denver

There is no overstating or underestimating the historical significance of the nomination of Barack Obama and the history that we will see tonight. There are so many parallels between now and 1960 and we could hear echo’s of the New Frontier and the “I Have a Dream” speech of 45 years ago.

What was really interesting to me was who I sat next to on the drive over to the convention center yesterday afternoon – an African American woman from Raleigh Durham, NC, who was around 80 years old. At the end of our conversation, she pointed to her skin and said just think what we could have done together all these years if there wasn’t a difference in our skin color.

Yesterday during the roll call, California passed. Art Torres validated what I thought was true, basically California wasn’t ready to vote. They hadn’t gotten the alternates information together because some of the regular delegates weren’t there. Massachusetts said why didn’t you just cast it anyway and Art Torres said that California was going to follow its own rules.

I thought last night was a double wow. We were surprised by Hillary Clinton with the NY delegation during the roll call giving all of New York’s votes to Barack Obama. All of us were inspired by her unity. Then of course, there was Obama’s appearance later. I hope we put to rest the press’s impression that we weren’t united. Last night went a long way to unite our party for November.

I was fascinated to observe the silence where you couldn’t hear a pin drop when Senator Biden was talking last night. He really touched people when he talked about what the average American faces each day. The audience was rapt in attention. For that crowd — which is constantly milling about, the constant din in the background – the fact that he could command an audience where they were really paying attention was remarkable. You could see that he really understands average Americans and their plight.

I was personally touched by the affection between Joe Biden and his family. He really is a genuine person and we are lucky to have him as our vice president nominee. Everyone loved his mom, too.

Bill Clinton gave a marvelous speech. When he wants to, he can deliver. He did the job last night. He was touched by the audience response to him – you could tell President Clinton was emotionally affected by everyone’s appreciation of him. I was a little concerned on a personal level whether he’d deliver, but clearly he’s on board.

We had a good California gala after the session as over. That was fun. Vickere got a kick out of me because I decided to dance once and she kidded me about having the perfect picture for the hometown newspaper.

As we go into tonight, the last day of the convention, we are all looking forward to Senator Obama’s speech … and leaving here united and ready to work hard to elect Senator Obama and Senator Biden as our next president and vice president.

I can’t say how emotional this will be on a personal level. For a young person, a son of the south, the meaning of what is going to take place today is particularly special. It is hard to believe that we’ve come this far where we’ve nominated an African American. I think it is spectacular. A lady coming into the elevator today was commenting on how emotional of a day it is for her.

I bought a hat and sun screen and I’m on my way to Invesco Field. I will report on the last day of the convention tomorrow.

Originally posted by Gar Byrum, Delegate

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