Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Monday, August 09, 2010

In Washington's Poorest Neighborhood, Rossi Receives Rock Star Reception

Patty Murray is in big trouble.

The Hillyard section of Spokane was built to house workers of the Great Northern Railway.  As a result, it acquired a reputation as a rough neighborhood that it maintains to this day.  Per capita, Hillyard is the poorest neighborhood in Washington state.  The decaying buildings have changed little since the Great Depression.  It almost feels like a movie set.

Hardly the place you would expect to find the man described as a heartless millionaire real estate broker and the tool of wealthy Washington, DC/Wall Street fat cats.

But on Saturday morning, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Dino Rossi walked in the parade that was part of the 99th annual Hillyard Festival.  No other Senate candidate was on hand.

Rossi, dressed casually in jeans, worked the crowd like a man running for city council, not the Senate.  Walking from one side of the street to the other, Rossi extended his hand to everyone he could get to and greeted them with, "Hi, I'm Dino."

No introduction was necessary.

People instantly recognized the two-time gubernatorial candidate.  They were surprised he was there in person, not just being represented by flunkies.  I overheard people saying, "That's really him," "Look, it's Dino," and "I can't believe he's here."

And how did the the crowd in this largely Democratic community react to Dino Rossi?

Like a rock star.
It seemed almost every person Rossi met said "I voted for you" or "You've got my vote."

There were shouts of encouragement like "We're with you!" or "We need you!" and admonitions to beat Patty Murray.

Onlookers shouted "Dino!, Dino!" as they tried to get the candidate's attention.  As Rossi passed the Total Cosmetology Training Center, blue clad students swarmed him. "Let us know if you need a hair cut" they said as they shook his hand.

Towards the end of the parade route, a man asked Dino, "Are you gonna do it this time?"  Rossi responded, "You bet, and I'm going to need your help when I get to DC."  It was clear that people are ready for real change, and they see Dino as the candidate that deliver it.

When the parade was over, Dino was clearly energized.  He hadn't received any large donations, but that wasn't what he had been looking for.

Some candidates in the Senate campaign have talked about "grassroots support."  Dino Rossi didn't just talk about it.  He demonstrated that he had it.


Anonymous said...

we already have a rock star in the white house. i do not want another one in the senate

Kim said...

We need a candidate with both legislative experience and common sense in DC desperately. That's Dino, not Didier. Didier has his points, but Dino's got my vote.

Anonymous said...

Go Dino!!!

Anonymous said...

go Paul Akers!!!!!

Anonymous said...

ah yes, the DidiAker Duo of Death. smh.