For What It's Worth:

Self-important political analysis from an American college student

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After the brutal details of the Kermit Gosnell

After the brutal details of the Kermit Gosnell trial finally became known to the American public, pro-life leaders across the country introduced bans on late-term abortions. They argue that there is no moral difference between killing an unborn child outside of the womb at 23 weeks and killing one inside of the womb at the same stage in a pregnancy. Further, they point to scientific evidence that finds that unborn children can begin feeling pain and reacting to changes in environment at 20 weeks. They further argue that women are more at-risk to face health challenges – even death – when they undergo a late-term abortion.

 

 

            The lobbyists at Planned Parenthood and The National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) have responded with the same uniform response with which they always respond to pro-life legislation. They have called the measures “extreme”, “radical”, and an attack on women’s health. For the most part, the mainstream media has allowed the pro-choice lobby to frame this debate on those terms, despite the actual facts that surround this issue from a moral, political, and scientific standpoint. I think it’s important that we ask the question: which side is more extreme, really?

 

 

            We can start by looking at the track record of the pro-choice lobby. First, they lobbied to have the Democratic Party platform on abortion changed from “safe, legal, and rare”, to essentially a platform that allows for abortion on-demand and without exception. Then, even while claiming that there was a “war on women” last fall, Planned Parenthood and NARAL fought vehemently to defeat a ban on sex-selection abortion in the U.S. House of Representatives, saying that the right to an abortion extended to aborting a baby girl simply because of her sex. They have opposed any and all attempts to clean up the abortion industry and to make safer conditions in clinics, and they have somehow claimed that over-regulation was the reason that Kermit Gosnell was able to terrorize women and murder born-alive babies without oversight for over a decade. Even common sense legislation receives the “extreme” label from Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and their allies in Congress.

 

 

            The most recent legislation that has been pushed by pro-life politicians is a ban on abortion after 20 weeks. The 20-week mark was chosen because some scientists and doctors believe that the unborn child can begin feeling pain at that point. Opponents to this legislation are correct in stating that there is not a scientific consensus that an unborn child can feel pain at 20 weeks (although there is a fair amount of evidence on the pro-life side). However, it is undisputed that the physical systems through which human beings feel pain begin to develop at this point. Doctors who oppose the fetal pain legislation say that the system is merely beginning to work, but that they cannot definitively state that an unborn child can indeed feel pain.

 

 

            Given that neither side can definitively say at which point an unborn child can feel pain, shouldn’t we our public policy follow the most conservative estimate that is backed by scientific evidence? Wouldn’t we rather save some unborn children that do not yet feel pain rather than accidentally harm the ones who do?

 

 

            As Texas Senator Ted Cruz noted in his written testimony to the Texas legislature, this issue has already been settled in many parts of the world. Brazil bans abortions at 10 weeks. Germany bans them at 12 weeks. So does Spain. And in France, one of the most liberal and secular states on the planet, abortions are banned at 14 weeks. Our country’s acceptance of late-term abortion puts us in the company of only four other nations: Canada, North Korea, and, of course, China.

 

 

 

            Despite this fact,  pro-choice leaders claim that they are the voice for all women. As I write this, Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards is leading a giant orange bus through the heart of Texas with “STANDING WITH TEXAS WOMEN” planted on its side. And on CNN’s “New Day” this week, NARAL President Ilyse Hogue claimed that Susan B. Anthony List President (and my former boss) Marjorie Dannenfelser is out of touch with women in her support of 20-week bans.

 

 

 

            The fact of the matter is that most Americans – and most women – stand with Marjorie on this issue. Even Kermit Gosnell’s lawyer has stated that abortion limits make far more sense at 15 or 16 weeks instead of the 26 weeks required by Roe v. Wade. The latest poll from the Huffington Post and YouGov finds that 59% of Americans support a ban on abortion after 20 weeks. A recent National Journal poll found that more women support a ban than oppose it (48% to 44%). This same poll found 50% support among women. And a University of Texas poll found that almost two-thirds (62%) of Texans support the ban.

 

 

 

            These numbers are even more staggering when we consider the strikingly low numbers of people who support the views that are pushed by Planned Parenthood and NARAL. According to a 2013 Gallup poll, only 14% of Americans think third-trimester abortions should be legal. The aforementioned Huffington Post/YouGov poll found that only 30% of people oppose a 20-week ban. And a 2011 Gallup Poll found that even pro-choice voters support many so-called “pro-life” pieces of legislation.

 

 

Of the pro-choice voters polled, 86% support informed consent laws, 79% believe in a ban on third-trimester abortions, 60% believe in parental consent laws. Even a majority (52%) of pro-choice Americans believe in a second-trimester ban.

 

 

 

No matter what you think of Planned Parenthood’s clinical operation, Planned Parenthood Action and Cecile Richards do not represent the majority of women. They don’t even represent the pro-choice movement. The fact is, a majority of Americans – even women – support the Texas legislation. There are no phrases catchy enough, no pink shoes bright enough, no bus big enough, and no mob loud enough to change this fact. NARAL and Planned Parenthood Action are out of touch with their movement, their membership, and reality itself.

 

 

If pro-choice Americans want truly want to root [IS THIS PROPER?] out extremism, they should start within their own ranks. And they should start at the top.

 

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Kevin Smith for Governor

Like many Republicans voters who will cast a vote for our party’s nominee in this year’s gubernatorial election, I was an early supporter of Ovide Lamontagne. Mr. Lamontagne is a good man, a committed activist, and a man whose deep faith is inspiring and moving to all who meet him.

However, after a great deal of research and consideration, I will be voting for Kevin Smith in our September 11th Primary.

Ronald Reagan once said that our Party needs to be the party of bold colors, not pale pastels. Those following this race know that Kevin Smith has been the candidate of big ideas and bold solutions since the onset of his campaign. He has put forth an aggressive plan to dramatically cut business taxes to bring new companies to our state, he has proposed education reform that would ensure a stronger future for New Hampshire, and he has even said that he will be Deval Patrick’s worst nightmare by poaching Massachusetts businesses and bringing their capital into the Granite State.

In the candidate debates for Governor, Smith has shown a mastery of all things New Hampshire. He understands the problems that face our state, and he understands what solutions are needed to tackle these challenges. He can explain the conservative message like no candidate for New Hampshire governor in recent memory, and would be the best person to debate Jackie Cilley or Maggie Hassan in the general election. There are few people in politics that can combine the wonk-ish knowledge of the issues with the political savvy to spread that knowledge effectively, and Kevin Smith is as good as it gets.

Former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani endorsed Smith’s campaign and traveled to New Hampshire to share his support. The reason is clear: Giuliani turned around New York by putting together a bold agenda built on big ideas. He dissected every problem from every angle and crafted bold solutions to solve these problems. Smith’s campaign for governor mirrors this strategy, which would be a welcome change to the way our state does business.

For the past eight years, New Hampshire has had a governor who, in many ways, effectively ran the day-to-day operations of the state.  It’s time now for a governor who is ready to look beyond the day-to-day; someone who is looking at our future and can structure a long-term plan for the Granite State. Kevin Smith is the only candidate for governor whose campaign centers on this theme – that it’s time for New Hampshire to make a strategic plan for our future that drastically improves our way of life.

I had originally decided that I would keep my support for Kevin Smith quiet and that my contribution to his campaign would be to simply to vote in his favor. Upon further thought, I realized that I would be doing a disservice to our state if I didn’t take further action. There are rare occurrences in which a candidate perfectly fits the time and place in which they are running. Kevin Smith is that type of candidate and the time is now.

After taking a beating in the press for the past two years, our party needs a Republican Governor who is a leader, not a manager. We need someone who can stand up for our conservative beliefs with conviction and eloquence, and who will focus on the important issues to the people of New Hampshire.

On September 11th, GOP Primary voters have the opportunity to nominate a once-in-a-generation, Reaganesque leader who has the bold ideas to bring our state to new heights. That man is Kevin Smith.

Meeting Paul Ryan

 A First Row Look at the Ryan Unveiling

I was in a friend’s room late Friday night when one of my friends entered and said, “Mitt Romney is announcing tomorrow.”

The game stopped immediately. I ignored the never-ending argument of who was a better champion, Bill Russell or Babe Ruth (it made sense at the time), and rushed over to a lap top in the corner. It was true; Mitt Romney would announce his pick in Virginia – our neighbor in Washington, D.C. Being from New Hampshire, I momentarily forgot that not the rule of “If it’s in the next state, you can take a day trip” does not apply to the Commonwealth. But when I found out that the drive would take 3.5 hours to get to Norfolk for the announcement, that didn’t matter enough to deter me…Neither did the fact that I would have to pick up a car across town at American University… Or that the doors opened to the announcement at 7:45 A.M….and was likely a first-come, first-serve affair – despite the ticket requirement.

So, I left my dorm at 2:30, hailed a cab, searched Tenleytown in the pouring rain for a Zipcar, picked up a friend, and drove the pre-sunrise way to Norfolk, V.A.

From 4:00 A.M. to 7:00, we asked ourselves “Are we really doing this?” about a hundred times.

The answer was given when we made it through the perfectly-orchestrated entrance next to the U.S.S. Wisconsin and into the staging area where Governor Mitt Romney would announce Congressman Paul Ryan as his sidekick on “America’s Comeback Team”.

We took a spot along the rope-line in the front row and watched as Governor George Allen, a few other local dignitaries, and thousands of supporters crowded the beautiful bayside venue.

As a NH Primary enthusiast, I have seen many of Mitt Romney’s events. Members of the crowd at Mitt Romney events are always interested, but never excited. Romney events generally provide little electricity and no euphoria; except on Saturday.

When VA Governor Bob McDonnell introduced Mitt Romney, the capacity crowd erupted. When he announced that Paul Ryan was his selection for the first time out loud, fists pumped in the air and hands reached toward the heavens. There was a sense of “We can do this” that has been lacking at Romney has fallen behind in the polls.

When Paul Ryan exited U.S.S. Wisconsin and walked toward the stage, the crowd was even more fired up. The walk-up music was fit for an epic battle at the end of a cheesy Hollywood movie, making it perfect to set the tone for the home stretch of the 2012 campaign.

When Romney introduced Ryan as “the next President of the United States,” my friend and I looked over at Ann Romney. We read her lips as she said, “Are you kidding me? Come on Mitt!” to herself. When he walked down to join his family, he was not greeted with the hug that he expected. Instead, his wife and sons pointed out his error.

For the first time in my history of following him, I saw Mitt Romney showed genuine emotion. “Did I?” he asked with a concerned look on his face, before putting the smile back on and making his correction on stage.

Meanwhile, on stage, Paul Ryan strutted on stage to a wild ovation – much louder than the one that Romney had received. His speech was constantly interrupted by applause from supporters, and interrupted once by someone who literally professed his love for them.

At the conclusion of Ryan’s introductory speech to the nation, it was clear that Team Romney is fired up over his selection. I looked back to see RNC Chaiman Reince Preibus shaking the hand of the Romney staffer next to him, both of them beaming and laughing. Next to him, Romney advisor Ed Gillespie squeezed the woman next to him (I sure hope that was his wife) in a gigantic hug, and the two jumped in unison like giddy cheerleaders at the conclusion of a high school basketball game. Neither Preibus nor Gillespie are known for being over-emotional or energetic, so the sight of their pure euphoria is meaningful.

Afterwards, the Romney’s and Ryan’s joined the candidates on stage and around the ropeline, where supporters stood ten-deep for a chance to shake their hands.

As Paul Ryan approached our area, his wife Janna and their two young sons stood behind him.

The man next to me – a tall, slender former Marine – shouted, “Congratulations, Mrs. Ryan!” and she walked over to our area. I shook her hand and said, “Congratulations, Mrs. Ryan.” Her two sons, both under the age of 10, showed the fatigue of two little guys who had been through a long 24 hours (they both spent most of their father’s speech yawning). I crouched down to their level and said, “Congratulations guys!” and put my hand up for a high five. At last, they became children again, and the youngest smacked my hand hard enough to make it sting.

Their dad reached our point in line a few minutes later.

“We’re praying for you, Congressman. Keep the faith,” I said.

He paused and his eyes locked onto mine. “That’s the nicest thing I could ask for. Thank you so much, and thanks for coming out today. We appreciate it.”

In those minutes on the ropeline I figured out Paul Ryan’s biggest asset to the campaign: Humanity. While Mitt Romney is seen as stiff, Paul Ryan is natural. While Mitt Romney is seen as awkward, Paul Ryan is comfortable. While Mitt Romney is seen as snobbish, Paul Ryan’s Midwestern charm give him a genuine down-to-earth nature.

People will have genuine beefs with the Ryan Roadmap and some of Ryan’s social stands in the past. But it’s hard to attacked Paul Ryan, especially since he doesn’t do much attacking on his own.

If the Left wants to lob bombs for the next 10 weeks, they’ll have to focus on policy; accusing the man who has a 10-year-old girl on one hand and a beautiful wife on the other of waging a “war on women” will hardly stick.

After the rally, my friend and I drove back through treacherous, depression-inducing traffic back to Washington. The phrase “I can’t believe we just did that”, with expletives tossed into various places of the sentence, was repeated at least 50 times.

Going Bold.

(Written at 2:00 AM on August 11)

Either the boys from Boston are pulling the greatest Bait ‘n Switch in the history of American politics, or Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) will be the Republican nominee for Vice President in 2012. While I tend to be skeptical of self-important “sources” and those who are desperate to break news, it seems like a safe lock that Paul Ryan will be Mitt Romney’s presumptive running mate, as of eight hours from now.

 

Over the past few weeks, the discussion has been about whether Governor Mitt Romney (R-MA) would go with the “safe” pick, or “go bold.” With Paul Ryan, he chose the latter; he reared back for the home run swing. The only person who can decide whether he makes contact with the pitch is Mitt Romney – with some assistance from Rep. Ryan.

 

Tomorrow morning, many Americans will ask themselves, “Who is Paul Ryan?” The answer is simple: The most courageous politician of the 21st century. Period.

 

Hyperbole? Hardly. Medicare and Social Security are set to go bankrupt before my generation even turns 40 years old, but reforming these two government programs is known as “the third rail of American politics” because of the political difficulties that come with reform. Nevertheless, Paul Ryan introduced a plan to make both programs solvent, to pay down our debt, and to put our nation on a path to prosperity.

 

This “Ryan Plan” has been demonized by Democrats for the past year-and-a-half, and has been a staple of Republican candidacies at the same time. It is divisive. It is polarizing. And it’s exactly what Mitt Romney needs.

 

As a conservative, I am nervous for the next few weeks. Mitt Romney’s campaign will have to define the Ryan Plan better than the Obama campaign defines it. As a Republican, this fact makes me nervous: Romney has done a poor job of defining everything from his record to his first name during this election.

 

At the same time, this may show a shift in the Romney strategy. The Mitt Romney of 2012 has been over-safe, over-calculated, and over-analyzed. This could mark a long-awaited change.

 

To use a tired basketball metaphor, Mitt Romney has been holding the ball for the past year, not realizing that he was trailing behind. Today, Mitt Romney began dribbling toward the basket.

 

This is his move. This is his drive to the hoop.

 

Many pundits will speculate over the course of the next 24 hours: What does the selection of Paul Ryan mean? The answer to this question depends on how the Romney campaign moves forward.

 

If this means that Mitt Romney is taking the gloves off and is prepared for the title fight of his life, then the Paul Ryan pick was brilliant. By going “bold,” Romney has set a new tone from his campaign. Rather than responding to disgusting Obama Super-PAC ads with nothing more than press releases and staff quotes, Mitt Romney is ready to call out the President on his policies. Rather than repeat the word “jobs” until he loses the sense of feeling in his lips, maybe Mitt Romney is ready to take on the President on his plethora of failures. And maybe, just maybe, Mitt Romney is ready to point out the basic fact that the President has done nothing to change the fiscal trajectory of a nation that is on a path toward destruction by debt and deficit.

 

[Imagine the V.P. debates in October, when Paul Ryan sits across from Joe Biden and says, “Joe, these programs have been facing a path of failure since you joined the senate over 30 years ago, and you haven’t done a thing to fix them. Your status quo has failed the American people, and it’s time for a new direction.”]

 

For the first time since challenging a protester in Iowa a year ago, Mitt Romney has showed that there’s more to his candidacy than tired talking points and over-protective strategy.

 

In one of the best columns of her career, Peggy Noonan recently stated that it’s time for Romney to pick a fight. Tomorrow morning, he will name a running mate who has been willing to take more punches than anyone else in Congress. At long, long last, Mitt Romney will toss the gloves aside.

 

And let’s be clear about one final thing: While the Ryan Selection is bold, it is not Palinesque. The only thing that Ryan and Palin have in common is the foam that lines liberals’ mouths at the mention of their names. Paul Ryan is an economist. He is chairman of the House Budget Committee. He has a record as an intellectual heavyweight who is serious about solving the nation’s biggest problems. Most importantly, Paul Ryan is prepared to be President tomorrow.

 

Tomorrow, Paul Ryan will be introduced to America as the next GOP candidate for Vice President, and Mitt Romney has a chance to finally re-introduce his candidacy to the nation. If the Ryan Selection is the first step in a  final, bold push for the Presidency, Mitt Romney is on his way to the White House.

 

 

 

The Argument

When Solicitor General Donald Verrilli was just two or three sentences into his opening statement, Justice Antonin Scalia interrupted him with a question. Verrilli had already been stumbling through his opening, and the premature question threw him off even more.

It was a theme that would be repeated for an hour straight. When asked simple questions such as “Why aren’t those problems that the federal government can address directly?” and “Where is the limiting principle?”, he staggered and struggled to find the right words. On more than one occasion, Justices Sotomayor and Kagan stepped in to practically answer questions on Verrilli’s behalf. On two occasions, his answers prompted laughter from the justices and the crowd.

I was shocked by the pace of the argument.; the hour flew by. Justices are relentless, and attack every answer from every angle, often interrupting before answers are finished. Sometimes it felt like ping pong, as justices from opposite ends of the bench would repeatedly toss questions. On more than one occasion, one answer would go unfinished as another one was answered, and the first justice would eventually (and sarcastically) ask for their question to be answered.

Between the HHS argument and the argument on behalf of the states, I turned to the person next to me and shared my thoughts: “It seemed like Verrilli was stumbling a lot – but on substance he still seemed pretty solid.”

He nodded in agreement and added, “Yeah, he stumbled a lot… But wait ‘til you see Clement. The disparity between them will be huge.” He put two fingers in the air, far apart, to signal a large gap.

And when Paul Clement started arguing, it was clear that my bench buddy had been correct. His voice was louder than Varrilli’s; his tone more confident; his arguments clearer. He was interrupted significantly later in his opening than Verrilli was during his opening.

When interrupted, it was as though Clement knew exactly what he was going to be asked. On multiple occasions, he cited page numbers and paragraph numbers from the PPACA, and cited verbatim arguments from past opinions. Even when Justice Breyer made up a hypothetical in which nearly the entire nation had a contagious epidemic, Clement answered as easily as if Breyer had asked about the weather.

Half a dozen times it seemed as though Clement was backed into an inescapable corner during his argument. Each time, he was able to obliterate premises, attack arguments, and quote legal precedents in order to stick to his arguments. Each of his arguments seemed flawless, and he was able to double-down on them even in the face of unyielding questions.

The most interesting back-and-forth conversations were between Clement and Justice Kagan. Kagan was prepared to argue this case in front of the Supreme Court before she was selected to serve on the court herself, so she has a large depth of knowledge from which to draw questions. She attacked Clement’s arguments hard and made many of her own arguments, and Clement would counter each one with increasing intensity. It was entertaining to watch: Two of the greatest minds of their generation debating the Constitution. It was a political nerd’s dream.

Watching Paul Clement argue this case was like watching Pedro Martinez at the 1999 All-Star Game. The best that there is, on the most important stage, delivering his best performance. When he is eventually, inevitably a Supreme Court Justice, people will look back at this case and see it as his finest hour.

At the stroke of 12:00 noon, the gavel slammed shut a remarkable process. It didn’t sink in until a while later, but I still looked around the Courtroom in amazement at what the two days of camping had brought. For the price of a short walk, a few nights sleep in the sidewalk, and the help of some great friends, I was able to get the historic experience I was looking for. To see the most brilliant legal minds discuss the role of our federal government was something that I will not soon forget.

Camp Supreme: Mission Accomplished.

Special thanks to everyone for reading, encouraging, bringing food, and showing interest in my journey. That was most of the fun!

We made it!


Shortly after 7:30 this morning, The Marshall arrived at the sidewalk and went over the rules of procedure.

“We will be going through with tickets in a few minutes,” he said. “These are for today’s hearings only.” Moments later, he worked his way up the line with a stack of yellow tickets in his right hand. When he got to us, he asked, “Are you guys here for today?”

Stephan could barely contain himself. We collectively said yes and celebrated as we were handed tickets #33, #34, and #35. The gentlemen behind us, both legal experts from an influential conservative political organization, received the next two tickets, and we all let out a sigh of relief as we realized we would get into the Court after all.

I turned to the gentlemen behind us and said, “I feel like the kid from Willy Wonka with the Golden Ticket…”

“I disagree,” he said. “Those went out once a season. This is once a century, maybe.”

They corralled us in almost immediately – quickly that we didn’t even have time to change. We stood out from the steps, toward the gathering crowd. Pro-Life Activist Lila Rose was giving a speech against Obamacare, and a crowd of women was attending to shout her down. The crowd was growing overall, with more people opposing the bill than supporting it.

Once again, we were corralled – this time through metal detectors and into the cafeteria. Shortly after, we were able to change into our suits and lock our bags away.

The marble hallways, busts of former justices, and distinguished paintings surrounded us as we stepped in line up to the Supreme Court.

When we finally, stepped into the Supreme Court, I burst into a huge smile. After 33 hours, temperatures ranging 40 degrees either way, a wicked sunburn, a handful of new friendships, and a new faith in my Brothers and friends, I was finally into the Supreme Court. I was going to watch the greatest legal minds of our time discuss one of the most important pieces of legislation of our time.

I looked around and felt small. The ceiling was covered in intricate patterns, marble columns and giant red curtains lined the sides, and the wooden benches reminded me of a fancy church. Among my fellow debate-watchers were Kathleen Sebelius, Eric Holder, John Kerry, Mitch McConnell, and Steve Tribe. The beauty of the room, the magnitude of the case, and the prominence of my company was overwhelming.

We finally made it. God bless America.

The Placeholders

The Washington Post and other news outlets have published stories about firms who are hired to save seats outside of major events for people who are willing to dish out large sums of cash for a good seat but aren’t so willing to wait in line.

When most people heard this story, it sounded like a well-manufactured machine of professionals who were willing to brave cold temperatures and hard sidewalks to make some money. What we saw at the Supreme Court was a different story.

Many reporters and others that I talked to asked why homeless people were standing at the front of the line at The Supreme Court. “They don’t look like the crowd that would want to go inside,” they said. Indeed, reporters and passersby viewed those first 30 people in line with a look of confusion, if not condescension.

In some ways, it seemed like a good match. Rich people who were wanted a place in line and were willing to give cash were linked with people who needed cash and were willing to wait in line. In many ways, it seems like a perfect pairing, but for some reason I struggled to feel good about the transactions.

Some PACs and other groups used a different approach. Rather than use a professional placeholding group, they paid their interns extra money to save spots in line for some of the more influential members of their team.

Morning Proceedings, Santorum Sighting, and Media Frenzy

After returning to sleep after a few hours, I was awoken by a video cameraman who was taping me while I sleep. Welcome to the circus…

There was a surprisingly small crowd this morning. At about 7:30, the Marshalls began handing out tickets to today’s arguments. These arguments pertained to the urgency of the Court case – and whether or not it was too early to decide the fate of The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. While I was roughly 60th in line, they had only handed out 27 tickets by the time they reached me. With such a short line, it was evident that spaceholders will have the choice between Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday arguments. No longer desperate for seats, more than half of the crowd chose to wait another day. I joined them, and now sit between 30th and 35th in line.

Of the 30 or so people in front of me in line, almost all are placeholders for someone else. They say precious little about who is paying them or how much they are being paid, but are loud otherwise. They are all appear to be low income men and women, and are coordinated by a man in a Washington Nationals hat.

The group behind us, who are cut from an entirely different cloth from those in front of us, are holding places for Family Research Council President Tony Perkins. Tomorrow morning will be extremely interesting as we watch some of D.C’s elite take their place ahead of us in line.

There is a large media pesence here, with reporters from all around the world. Since the line is small and most of our fellow placeholders are not allowed to talk to the press, we have been interviewed by almost all of the reporters here. From NBC, to FoxBusiness, to CanadaTV, to The New York Times – we’ve seen it all. Those who know me will be surprised to know that a New York Times columnist has actually befriended us and has spent most of the day in our humble abode at 1st St. and East Capitol.

Throughout the morning, AFSCME members marched outside the Supreme Court, holding signs in support of Obamacare. There were hundreds of them, and only a small contingency of Tea Partiers. There was also a small group of Pro-Life activists who wrote “LIFE” on red duct tape, covered their mouths with the tape, and prayed silently amidst the chaos.

Shortly after 12:00 noon, Senator Rick Santorum arrived and held a Press Conference outside the Court. He did not use a microphone, so most of the media did not here what he said, but our New York Times friend said she heard him take multiple shots at Romney, claiming, “I am the only one who can repeal Obamacare.”

As he spoke, a large group of women chanted, “Healthcare is a right!” to which Tea Partiers responded “Where in the Constitution?”

The afternoon has been particularly quiet.  The weather is gorgeous and the crowd has calmed.

The weather is supposed to drop down to the mid-thirties tonight. I’m thankful for my fraternity brothers, who have brought us sleeping bags and plenty to keep warm.

Check out our “Media Hits” page to see coverage of Camp Supreme! We were on the front page of the Nashua Telegraph today!

The sprinklers are on…

Yikes. Image

What a way to wake up; a splash in the face!….

I’ve learned that most people in line are here for Tuesday’s arguments. Tomorrow morning, the Court will debate whether or not it is premature to decide the case, since no one has been forced to buy health insurance. Both sides are expected to agree that the time is right, so the debate will not be particularly exciting.

The concrete is surprisingly cozy. More updates once this shower ends and I rest up a  bit more.

I have arrived!

We left GWU at around 10:00 and strolled along The National Mall and up Capitol Hill to the steps of The Supreme Court. The court is very quiet and still, with a few police officers standing guard by the front steps. There is very little media here, other than the GW Hatchet and a few smalltime reporters.

There are rumors that Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, and Sarah Palin may be on hand tomorrow, but I haven’t seen anyone too influential thus far.

I am 55th in line, and that The Court holds about 75 to hear the arguments. This puts yours truly in a pretty good spot over-all. I fear that people may get aggressive tomorrow, or that placeholders may be holding spots for a crowd rather than just themselves, but my chances seem pretty good for Tuesday morning.

The crowd is a wide range of people. There are some Tea Party-looking older people, some people who frankly look pretty shabby, and some professional-looking people who are using their sports jackets as blankets. It’s difficult to tell people’s political leanings.

All’s quiet at The Supreme Court for now. I’m told to expect a circus in the morning.

To see more photos, check out the “Photos” page on this site.