Port Townsend: Democrats reign in the rain

PORT TOWNSEND — The rain tried to put a damper on the Democrats’ pre-election rally Sunday at Memorial Field, but the die-hards went away with their spirits raised.

“It was fantastic,” said Lynette Holloway of Port Townsend, carrying a Kerry-Edward sign.

“I wish more people had been here. They missed a fantastic program.”

About 200 party faithful, bundled in hats and coats, filed into the stands to hear Sen. Patty Murray, Congressmen Norm Dicks and Jay Inslee, and candidates for state and local offices give the call to action.

“It was wonderful of all those people to come in the rain,” said Maggie Jacobsen, who drove from Port Ludlow with her husband, Bruce.

“We need to be reminded of all the reasons it is so critical for everyone to get out and vote.”

Kessler emcees

Emceed by state Rep. Lynn Kessler, the program included speeches by mountain-climber Jim Whittaker, who spoke about meeting John and Teresa Heinz Kerry in Washington, D.C.

Kerry loves the outdoors, Whittaker said, and accepted Whittaker’s invitation a year ago to climb Mount Rainier this summer, but later had to take a rain check.

“He said, “Sorry, Jim, I’ve been really busy this summer,'” Whittaker said.

At the gate, people with umbrellas ran a gamut of sign holders, including the Hood Canal Coalition’s John Fabian with his “No Pit to Pier” message.

Larry McKeehan handed out stickers that said “Just Say No To W,” and “Ask Me Why I’m Voting.”

“I know why,” said Joan Ewbank of Port Townsend as she accepted a sticker.

“It’s because we’re going in the wrong direction.”

Alley of mud

The rain let up by the time the rally got under way at 2:15 p.m., but left an alley of mud in front of the stage set up in front of the stands.

But there was very little mud-slinging except in the direction of the White House.

“This administration has failed us,” Rep. Dicks, the North Olympic Peninsula’s congressman, told the audience.

“We need a new commander in chief.”

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