Two of my classmates, Eliot Caroom and Lakshmi Gandhi, produced a multimedia package for Newsweek on the Quaker vote in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. You can find the video and story here.
The Tribal Spears Gallery filled to the brim over the past hours with Obama supporters donning shirts and pins on which the Illinois Senator’s name was emblazoned across. As the results continue to filter in from around the country, the spirits remain high at Harlem4Obama. “We are going to bring this to Denver
,” said Harlem4Obama President Michael Washington. “And continue on in November.”
Rachelle Bradt, a Harlem resident for 27 years chose to vote for Obama after reading his book, comparing his policies to those of Clinton, comparing his website to those of the other candidates and reading Andrew Sullivan’s article in The Atlantic. “I noticed this campaign was something different, back before all the celebrities did in December,” said Bradt. “This is a historic moment. If we don’t seize this historic opportunity, they don’t come again. We don’t get second chances.”
As results from the Texas primaries began to pour in Bradt said, “We’re looking at every number coming in for Texas. I am guardedly optimistic that it might happen. If Texas goes Obama that’s when I’ll be happy, happy, happy.”
As per the New York Times website at 8:20 p.m. Obama wins Vermont, and is projected to take Texas and Clinton projected to win Ohio. Polls close in Rhode Island at 9 p.m.
Not everyone knew what was going on in the Tribal Spears Gallery this evening. Janeka Gray, an employee at Harlem’s Children Zone, stumbled into the gallery to enjoy a muffin, and found herself in the middle of a party in support of Barack Obama. “I am undecided,” said Gray, “but I have been influenced by my friends to support Obama.” Though Gray sees little difference between the two contenders for the Democratic candidacy, she said, “I think people see Obama as a a real American. Most of our Presidents have come from wealthy backgrounds, but he is working class.”
Makeba Lloyd, the media coordinator for Harlem4Obama, never took any interest in politics until this presidential election season. “I was completely disgusted by politics until now,” said Lloyd. “We actually have a candidate that I understand and speaks to the people.” Though the 15th Congressional District – a Democratic battleground
to which Harlem belongs – went to Senator Clinton
during the Super Tuesday primary, Lloyd does not feel disheartened. “We feel good, we really do,” she said. Though Lloyd does not expect Obama to sweep tonight, she does expect him to come out strong, “like he has in the past 12 primaries,
” Lloyd added.
The Ohio polls closed at 7:30 p.m. EST and just as they closed Harlem4Obama changed the station from MSNBC to CNN. The crowd continues to grow, but media coordinator Makeba Lloyd said the real crowd starts to trickle in around 8:30 p.m.