Richmond, VA – Sarah Palin Victory Rally LIVE BLOG

Gov. Sarah Palin is speaking this afternoon in Richmond, Virginia at the Richmond International Raceway.

I’ll be regularly updating this blog as the rally progresses.

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1:19 PM – Traffic is backed up from RIR to I-64/Laburnum Ave exit. The crowd appears to be massive as it is bumper-to-bumper never moving faster than 5 mph. Good job on the traffic pattern. It’s not like you never have big events here!

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1:29 PM – AFL-CIO for Obama-Biden protesting. Glad to see they’re working hard to keep the economy strong! Oh wait… protesting never added a dime to GDP.

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1:46 PM – Standing room only! Sea of thousands with more on the way. Rascal Flatts and now Survivor’s Eye of the Tiger playing.

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1:54 PM – Just confirmed with Henrico Police and campaign staff… Estimated Crowd: 15,000 and growing.

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2:02 PM – Kenny Loggins “Danger Zone” is playing. Crowd is respectful and really enthusiastic! None of those libtard plants to embarrass sane people in sight!

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2:08 PM – Fmr. Va. Atty. Gen. Jerry Kilgore – McCain in Virginia Co-Chair leads the pledge of allegiance, invocation, and opening remarks.

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2:13 PM – Kilgore slams Obama on taxes, drilling (inflate your tires), and clean coal (but no clean coal) technology. Also, he dinged Obama on foreign policy and relationships with Israel and Georgia and the prospect of a nuclear Iran.

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2:16 PM – Moves to Gov. Palin introduction and that VA will be red again this November.

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2:18 PM – Gov. Palin arrives on the Straight Talk Express… Crowd freaks out!

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2:21 PM – Rep. Rob Wittman just finished speaking and former Gov. Jim Gilmore is stumping now for his Senate race. He’s currently 28% behind former Gov. Mark Warner. Crowd is chanting, “Drill, baby, drill!”

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2:30 PM – Gilmore blasted Obama, Biden, and Warner about raising taxes. He then blasted Warner or his comments about gun owners and homeschoolers ruining America. Crowd boos loudly.

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2:30 PM – Gilmore finished and as we wait for Gov. Palin to rock the house we’re listening to Brooks & Dunn “Only in America.”

Question: Which candidacy embodies and embraces the that theme… “Only in America, we all get a chance.”

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2:32 PM – Todd and Sarah take the stage… Hubba hubba! Two for the price of free! Shania Twain plays and everyone loves it! “She’s not just a pretty face…”

She’s on the council–she’s on the board
She’s a politician–she praises the Lord

She’s–not–just a pretty face
She’s–got–everything it takes

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2:35 PM – She’s just introduced Mr. Hank Williams for the national anthem! Who rode up from Va. Beach with them.

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2:37 PM – “O’er the land of the free and home of the brave!” — It was a little “pitchy” but no one cared.

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2:40 PM – Hank is now singin’ “McCain-Palin Tradition” a redux of “Family Tradition”. You can view it here.

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2:45 PM – Gov. Palin: Are you ready to shake up Washington?

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2:49 PM – Gov Palin: Just once I’d love to hear Barack Obama talk about victory.

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2:51 PM – Gov Palin: Opponent looks to the past to place blame, we’re looking to the future to find our solutions.

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2:52 PM – She understands anger about Washington, Wall St., and about VOTER FRAUD! John will reform it all!

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2:53 PM – Not just talk but walking the walk to put government back on the side of people. Including the $10 trillion federal debt and balancing the budget by the end of the term. Spending freeze – stop digging the hole deeper. Let business owners keep their money to create growth rather than taxes.

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2:55 PM – Protestors heckle… Crowd shouts them out… SARAH SARAH SARAH! She tells them who is fighting for that right.

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3:00 PM – McCain energy policy will create 700,000 jobs and keep $700 billion at home. Chides Biden about clean coal. Crowd cheers and laughs.

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3:05 PM – As a society, we have much to learn from special needs kids. All human life should be protected.

“There is the human standard and then there is God’s standard.”

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3:08 PM – We believe what Reagan believes: advance freedom and not government.

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3:10 PM – She chides Obama about gun rights. Then says, “Unlike our opponent, we know we do not need to apologize for America because America is the solution.”

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3:11 PM – Sarah reminds everyone who is the only candidate that has ever really fought for us. She ends with God bless America. Crowd cheers and and they play Shania Twain again – I think this song is perfect for her.

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3:14 PM – She’s now working the crowd inside the stands (had to get here before 11:00 AM to get in there. 8,000 strong in there!

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3:18 PM – “Right Now” rocks the PA.

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3:34 PM – Still hoping for a good shot. Sara Evans “Born To Fly” playing. Hank, Todd, and Sarah are signing posters. The only thing we see besides a glimpse of them are TONS of Secret Service agents. In person, they look pretty intimidating. So, I won’t be rushing the crowd line.

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Well it great to be there. Officials estimated the crowd at 25,000. Remember, they were originally planning to hold this at the 6,000 capacity Arthur Ashe Center. They then setup 8,000 seats and stands for the rally. There were an additional 17,000 standing outside the stands and stage area listening in.

It was a great speech. She did an awesome job. She has quite a presence and really leaves you with the impression she is the champion of the people. She doesn’t swagger like Barack Obama, as if she’s entitled. She hangs out for longer than she spoke mingling with people and signing autographs. Her husband is greeting and talking with people, too.

As the tour bus pulls away you could see them in the window waving. I hope it is not the last time we see them on our side of the country. I’d be much obliged to have them stay for a handful of years.

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5 Responses

  1. It was a great rally – just hot! I had a good place not too far from the stage. I arrived about 11am and stood in line for an hour to get through security. I feel bad for all of those folks who arrived later, and had to stand much further out. . .I don’t think they could see anything. I loved Hank Williams’ serenade to the McCain-Palin campaign!

    Cindy

  2. “2:55 PM – Protestors heckle… Crowd shouts them out… SARAH SARAH SARAH! She tells them who is fighting for that right.”

    One of my biggest frustrations with the whole event today… They weren’t protesting ANYTHING. People in the back couldn’t hear her. They shouted a few times for them to cut up the speaker volume and then started chanting “LOUDER, LOUDER…” and then other people started chanting to drown them out. Thanks to a HUGE misunderstanding, Palin called her own supporters protesters.

    And ya, I feel bad for the all the people who arrived later as well. Having a ticket meant nothing at that point. I understand that ANY campaign… whether it be Obama’s or McCain’s… has the media in mind at these events… Showing a sea of people is much better PR than it would have been to have people go INSIDE of RIR, watch from the stands, and have the cameras pick up empty seats. Plenty of shorter people, and just people in general, who came out to support her, became sad and frustrated at the fact that they couldn’t see her, nor hear her.

    Don’t get me wrong, my comments aren’t so much aimed at McCain/Palin, but rather, the poor handling of the event. (Early on, I’m sure they began to realize that turnout was to be much higher than expected.) There were people getting sick from the heat and close quarters left and right. Calling ahead and asking questions revealed one thing, but upon arrival you were told another. For example, outside food and drink. Campaign office said, OK. Parking attendants said no, but you were allowed to spend money on drinks being sold there. Was that really necessary? And when they did offer water and ice to the crowds it was a joke. They couldn’t accomidate that many people and those in the “sea” that really needed it coudn’t even get the attention of volunteers.

    The event with Bill Clinton on Sunday seemed to be handled better, though granted it was at night and people were cooler and it was a much smaller event. Both events said not to bring homemade signs, but that rule wasn’t enforced today at the Palin event. And some signs were highly inappropriate language/content-wise (there were children and families present) and disrespectful of Obama in general. Everyone is allowed to pick a candidate and be for or against them, but I believe both presidential and vice-presidential nominees deserve equal levels of respect.

    Now, I am glad that the McCain camp made the effort to send Sarah to Richmond today, but I am a bit frustrated. If Virginia is to play such an important role in this election, why haven’t McCain OR Obama come to Richmond themselves?

  3. Well… it appeared they were protestors… I’m with ya, they originally planned for 6K max at arthur ashe… then moved it to RIR for 8K… but 25K showed up… most without tickets.

    Maybe they did think this had become Obama country and expected far fewer to turnout. I don’t know.

    I was actually pretty far in the back myself but I could hear fine. I’m not sure what the problem for others was. I also didn’t hear the “louder, louder”… LOL obviously, she couldn’t either.

  4. I’m going to have to agree with you there. Talking to people in the city, it would appear that 99% are for Obama, but the rally with Clinton was maybe between 3,000 and 5,000 people. Yesterday’s numbers, however, were insane. I was taking photos for the paper and didn’t realize Jeff was in one of them. He’s got his hand on his head looking at the crowd upon arrival almost as if he was blown away.

    I know for a fact that she herself couldn’t hear the “Louder, Louder” part. I was just really frustrated with that situation in general. Because the people that started the “Sarah!” chants to drown them out were near me and people near me were getting mad at them because we all heard the “Louder, Louder” part, but didn’t understand why they thought it was protesters. I could hear her fine from where I was standing though.

  5. Thanks for the notshell. You are the best! I’m so glad you’re in the family and I’m proud to call you ours! Keep it up!

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