Eugeneans from Code Pink to the Coffee Party turned out to protest former Alaska governor and former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin on April 23rd when she came to fundraise at the Eugene Hilton. (Word on the street is she hung out at 6th Street later that night. Apparently she couldn't find any organic granola to hunt and kill at the hotel.)
Her speech focused on the "lame-stream media" and made a few granola and Nike jokes.
The media was not allowed to record or photograph the speech or the Q & A with screened questions fielded by outgoing Eugene City Councilor Jennifer Solomon. Nor did Palin take any questions from reporters.
Despite the media restrictions, journalists were out in full force, from the AP to The Oregonian. And the crowd outside the Hilton used their signs to get their opinions out there
Hope there was good turnout for McKenzie River Trust's Living River series talk on Ken Kesey afterward.
Palin's pro-wolf gunning and anti-environment stances were subjects of some of the protest signs.
Old Slug Queen Slimelda (aka Karen Myers) turned out, TP in hand, to wipe Palin away.
Not everyone was there to protest Palin.
Words were exchanged, but nobody got carried away (or Tased as far as we know).
Intrepid EW intern Deborah Bloom traipsed up to Salem on Monday, Feb. 15 to get some photos and interviews for this week's cover story on the local Tea Party and 9.12 Project movement from Tea Partiers and their supporters.
She went to the rally organized by Freedom Works, Taxpayers Defense Project, 9-12 Project-Salem, Oregon Patriots/Resist net, Common Sense for Oregon, Tea Party Patriots-Oregon, Marion County Republicans, Capitol City Republican Women, Clackamas County AFP, 9-12 Cottage Grove and 9-12 Lane County.
Bloom reports the slogans at the rally included:
Here were some signs:
"Americans for Prosperity"
"Taxed Enough Already"
"Redistribute my work ethic, not my house"
"No New Taxes"
"All Politicians Owe Us a Refund"
"Vote Mike Matheson for State Representative"
"Chris Dudley for Governor"
"Less government = More love"
"In God we Trust - That's some Change I'd like to see"
Bloom says the rally was attended by a large number of motorcyclists:
Bloom: "I'm trying to figure out why there are so many motorcycles here."
Brian Matthiew (motorcyclist): "Well, we're tired of having our rights abused. We're tired of not having representation, people telling use what to do. Making decisions on what we wear. For example wearing a helmet or not when they've never even put their leg over a motorcycle. That's the main one. We're pretty civically minded. We are aware of what is going on in our legislature. We're tired of people taking us for granted, voting the wrong way, not taking us into consideration our power of vote for every single motorcycle here represents 100 brothers. There's an awful lot of people. — 17,000
motorcycle riders in the state."
Bloom: "Are there any other regulations affecting motorcyclists?"
Matthiew: "Well, for example, vehicular homicide. If we get hit and then someone body says 'Oh, I didn't see them' then they're sent packing and don't have to go to jail. That's not fair, is it fair?"
According to Lane 9.12 organizer, Lela Trope a proposal to have motorcyclists with conceal carry permits lock their guns is also an issue.
Bloom says that at one point, there was a speaker who, at the end of his speech, had everyone join him in prayer.
Many people she spoke to, she says did not identify with a particular political party. One woman described herself as disenchanted.
Barack Obama spoke to a cheering crowd of roughly 5,000 at the UO on Friday night.
Here's a link to audio of his speech with video clips of the rally.
In case you missed him the last time, Eugeneans have another chance to see presidential candidate Barack Obama speak at the UO. This time he will be at the Memorial Quad on the UO campus (otherwise known as that large grassy area in front of the library).
Rally with Barack Obama
University of Oregon -- Memorial Quad
East 13th Avenue
Between Adler St. and Kincaid St.
Friday, May 9th
Doors Open: 5:45 p.m.
When they say "doors open" I'm guessing they are being figurative, unless the organizers have found a way to enclose the Quad. Nonetheless, experience tells us that you need to get there early if you want to get in (press included).