By now we've seen the photos of Barack Obama's grandmother celebrating his victory in her village in Kenya. But that's just the beginning. Here's just a quick selection of tidbits from the international media, covering the response to Obama's election:
Our dude Chris Faraone toured Chicago's Grant Park earlier today, getting the lay of the land as he prepares to report live from Obama's hometown election rally.Keep tabs on Chris's real-time reports here, and check out www.thephoenix.com/election2008 for our full election coverage throughout the night.
I'm breaking with my years-long tradition of never telling anyone how I vote on any issue this year. I figure that anyone who actually wonders whom I voted for doesn't know me that well, and anyone who knows me is going to guess that I voted for Obama. So what's the harm in telling? (Just don't ask me who I supported for county charter commission.
In 2004, I wrote in the Phoenix about voting for a president for the first time. I felt idealistic, empowered, and special. I worried that my idealism would be squandered if John Kerry lost, or if the election was contested.
For better or for worse, and despite the clusterfuck of the past four years, I still feel hopeful about what this country can be - and that's why I voted for Barack Obama.
That’s right Kanye – you’re no longer the most popular black man in Chicago. Until people are let out of work early to see you rock a concert, that title officially belongs to Barack Obama.
Loads of employees were released at three today, and, judging by the number of supporters swarming on Grant Park, I’m guessing that most of them didn’t stop at home to re-apply deodorant.
“I like that early voting!” Governor Deval Patrick says; an
off-the-cuff statement he makes in casual conversation while being fitted for a
lavaliere microphone, not far from a sign that reads, ‘Elections are won in the
last 72 hours.’
The second floor of 179 Lincoln Street is hopping today,
despite the fact that the space, undergoing renovations, looks like the sort of
concrete skeleton that trance-dancing rave organizers drool for.
I’m not the only person in Chicago who’s excited about getting a socialist president in office. People have their dogs dressed in Obama sweaters. Hundreds are showing up hours early for the Grant Park rally. Somewhere, I’m sure some breasts are being painted.
The downtown loop is bustling. News vans are lined around the block, and the talking heads are doing stand-ups, most of which are hilarious.
Chris Faraone is in Chicago blogging and Twittering from Obama HQ. He's also been getting drunk and interviewing people all over town. Below, his video interview with Steve Juras of Mode, who (along with Sol Sender) co-designed the Obama campaign logo. We know there were beers involved, but did Juras really vote for Nader?
Surely you’ve heard about Grant Park – it’s the place in Chicago where Barack Obama will hopefully say “I win” tonight. It’s totally the Studio 54 of American politics.
As I mentioned in earlier dispatches, Chicagoans expect this evening’s festivities to be one of three things: 1 – The greatest celebration in recent political memory; 2 – A big fucking riot; or 3 – The most fantastic celebratory riot in United States history.
Chicago is extraordinarily segregated. White faces are scarce on the South Side, and by the time my train reaches the final stop I’m the only cracker left. I’m sure there are diverse pockets somewhere around here, but not from where I’m sitting.
Everyone is mighty friendly, and some are even concerned about me walking around.
I leave my friend’s apartment and a police officer stops me outside his door. She’s nice enough, but she still takes my name for allegedly matching the description of someone who was snooping around. It could have been me after all – that’s essentially what I do for a living.
There’s a heavy police presence on the train.
Whether or not Chicago is Obama country largely depends on where you are and who you’re talking to. As anyone who’s ever met a Massachusetts Republican will attest, there’s ignorance and insanity no matter how blue the turf may be.
Last night I grabbed a drink before dinner at a hole outside the downtown loop. The joint – simply called Richard’s Bar – is the sort of spot where you’d expect to find McCain supporters, or at least Obama haters.
Here's what the Obama campaign staff are really up to today, courtesy of UltimateImprov.com:
Before touching down in Chicago, I had a romantic vision that this would be some sort of blue Utopia – a prObama mirage hidden between New York and Los Angeles. In my dreams, Obama-Biden posters line every block, with small children gleefully hoisting “Change” signs on all corners.
And to some degree – depending on where you are – it’s almost like that.
I meet a nice woman in the airport who’s flying to California for her lesbian sister’s shotgun wedding. With Proposition 8 looming on the left coast, gay couples are rushing to tie knots. My new friend tells me that thousands of Mormons have been bussed into Cali to pass out hateful literature at busy intersections.?xml:namespace>