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people who are going broke are here,” he said. U.S. Rep. Kika De La Garza of Mission, chair of the House Agriculture Committee, said farmers need a “livable” interest rate and stable prices and a couple good crops to get out of trouble. “The interest rate is devastating; it’s pushing them off their land,” he said. THE DELEGATES were confined in a subterranean hall that suffered frequently from heat and gridlock as floor whips and reporters competed for rights-of-way. Due to limited space, convention officials parceled out 30-minute passes to the hall. The rest of the time the reporter’s best hope was to collar a delegate breaking for a restroom. Otherwise the bulk of the 14,000 reporters watched the televised proceedings in the press gallery or in a lounge provided by the railroad lobby. There journalists could grab free sandwiches and beer and interview each other or one of the journalistic celebrities who strolled through, from Hunter Thompson to Guido Sarducci to Ronald Reagan, Jr. , a former hoofer on assignment for Playboy. Reporters outnumbered delegates by nearly 3 to 1 in what was probably the most media-conscious convention ever, and few were the delegates who had not been interviewed by several TV, radio, newspaper or magazine reporters. But the delegates were not unprepared for the reportorial onslaught. There were seminars on how to deal with the media and advisories on what to say when reporters asked what they thought of the ticket’s chances. The media attention made for unusual side-skirmishes, such as the pre-emptive strike by Hart forces Monday night when they showed up with more and brighter placards for the convention opener. That sent Mondale supporters scurrying for more of their own signs for a retaliatory strike. By the time the actual nomination vote came Wednesday, it appeared that both sides had reached sign parity. Other than the major marches by labor union members and gays and lesbians, both of which drew an estimated 100,000 people the weekend before the convention, the demonstrations outside the Moscone Center were relatively low-key and the delegates took them in stride. City leaders provided a corral in front of the convention center, where groups could demonstrate for causes such as children’s rights, the rights of the disabled, peace and other concerns, while entrepreneurs sold buttons and posters or passed out pamphlets. Groups protesting war investment were responsible for the major disturbances, including a “die-in” in the nearby financial district, which got nearly 90 arrested and charged with felony conspiracy to obstruct traffic. It seemed ironic, considering the extent that the convention preparations already had obstructed traffic around the center. A judged seemed to agree with some of the protesters that the charges seemed a tad trumped-up when he released them on their own recognizance the next day. Jackson transformed the face of minority politics and relieved the fears of many Democrats when he counseled his “Rainbow Coalition” to support the Democratic Party. But the convention also left black leaders split between Jackson and Mondale. The rivalry already cost Houston U.S. Rep. Mickey Leland, a Mondale supporter, his Democratic National Committee seat at the state convention. Convention booing and hissing of Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young and Coretta Scott King, when she spoke in Young’s defense, showed the depth of feeling. Although Jackson renounced the displays and called on blacks to unify, Beaumont delegate Cleveland Nisby said black leaders who campaigned for Mondale may have trouble getting black support in future races unless they “reconcile” themselves with the new movement. Jackson also advised Hispanic leaders to get party leaders to commit to reforms in voting rights, bilingual and immigration concerns, and to hold them to their promises in exchange for support in November. “At this moment the iron is hot, and it is the moment for you to reshape the political iron,” he said. He opposed the boycott over the Simpson-Mazzoli bill. “Boycotting is the politics of despair,” he said. “What’s the use of fighting to get in and then volunteering to walk out? It’s not the absence of your vote that’s the power; it’s the presence of your vote that’s the power,” he said. If party leaders underestimated Hispanics’ opposition to the immigration proposal, the Hispanic delegates clarified their position with their threat to boycott the first ballot of nomination. But even after Mondale committed to oppose the bill, Kika De La Garza appealed to the delegates to keep up the pressure. “Don’t let it die here,” he said. Despite their prominent role in carrying Mondale to the nomination, union members kept a relatively low profile during the convention. Texas labor leaders expended most of their effort on ensuring Mondale’s nomination, assured of his support for major union goals, including domestic content legislation. Sabine Area Central Labor Council President Emmett Sheppard, a delegate from Groves and a Mondale floor whip, said union member-delegates were not trying to play down their role in Mondale’s campaign. “Everything went according to plan,” he said, adding that he expects the Democrats to be united. “I think everybody knows what we’re up against and that it’s going to take everybody working together.” After the adjournment, Sheppard repeated those sentiments and added that the unions may have a surprise yet for the Republicans. “We’ve won every one they said we couldn’t win this year and we’ll win one more,” he said. “We can carry the nation if we can carry the state,” he predicted. complete personal and business insurance ALICE ANDERSON AGENCY 808-A East 46th P.O. Box 4666, Austin 78765 “The hard work and political courage of the West Texas Democrats can . . . indeed do . . . make a significant difference in crucial statewide races. I know . . . I am living proof!” Lloyd Doggett Democratic Nominee U. S. Senate The West Texas Democrats endorsed Lloyd Doggett in February 1984. In the toughest county for Doggett supporters Lubbock Lloyd’s vote doubled from May 5 to June 2, contributing to his historic victory in the Democratic primary. However, work and courage alone will not win elections. Your financial support in any amount will enable WTD’s more than 200 members to continue helping progessive candidates in West Texas. For a contribution of $25 or more, you can receive an annual subscription to the WTD newsletter. Join our effort and send your Dollars for Demos like Doggett! West Texas Democrats “for progressive government” P.O. Box 53660 Lubbock, Texas 79453 Howard Adams, Treasurer Linda Shoemaker, Chair West Texas Democrats THE TEXAS OBSERVER 5