Sunday, January 18, 2009

Highballin' On the Obama Express

We didn't get a chance to see the Obama Express blow through town; had they chosen to start 200 miles away on the other side of Washington, things might have been different. Our late Grandpa used to work for CSX railways, so had the train passed through Richmond, it would have been nice to carry on his tradition (mechanically if not politically).

Obama is now the first president-elect to travel by train since Eisenhower. While some may deride the train trip as unnecessary pomp, there's something to the idea that traveling in by train is more inclusive. In the 19th century, train traveling was the only way to campaign, and the only way candidates could connect with people; William Jennings Bryan gave 500 speeches in 100 days from the back of his train car. While Obama didn't do that yesterday, it was certainly constructive for more of the populace to see their president.

It's too bad we didn't get to see Obama's train go by. But we plan to make up for it two days from now.

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