Athens-Area Dems Head To Convention

By
Michael Locklear

Dateline
Updated Fri, Aug 31, 2012 2:47 pm

 

The Republicans wrapped up their national convention Thursday night.
 
Now, the Democrats, including two Athens-area delegates, are packing suitcases for their national convention, which starts Tuesday in Charlotte, North Carolina.
 
That's where they will officially nominate President Barack Obama for re-election.
 
“Almost every, for the past three years, since they've been in office, I've been getting a Christmas card from the White House, from the Obamas,” said Patrice Beard, of The Plains.
 
Beard is excited for her first convention.
 
The 33-year-old has been volunteering for the Democrats since 2000.
 
 “Most of the time, I've kind of been volunteering, making phone calls, canvassing, handing out flyers, mailing them,” said Beard.
 
Beard has become a collector of buttons, signage and other political knick-knacks.
 
She says she can't wait to get to Charlotte. 
 
“You know, just meet all the other Democrats in politics, basically meet new fresh faces, the rising stars of the Democratic Party in the future,” said Beard. 
 
State Rep. Debbie Phillips (D-Athens) is also a delegate.
 
She'll mingle and watch speeches from this convention center next week.
 
Phillips says she's there to network.
 
“I think in politics, just like in business and in our local community, a lot of things get done based on the relationships you're able to create and the people you know and so if I'm able to meet legislators from other states who might be
interested in some of the same issues I'm interested in and where we might be able to learn some things from each other, I think that's worthwhile in and of itself,” said Phillips.
 
It's also Rep. Phillips' first time to the DNC,so she says she's not sure what to expect and is going in with an open mind.
 
Beard flies out Saturday and Rep. Phillips leaves Sunday morning.
 
She's taking a bus to Charlotte with other delegates.
 
Michael Locklear is a fellow in Ohio University’s E.W. Scripps School of Journalism Statehouse News Bureau.
 
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