Mary Gail is a delegate from the state of Massachusetts. Far from a convention “newbie” like myself, this is Mary Gail’s fifth Democratic convention. A long-time party activist back in Hamden County, Massachusetts, Mary Gail is the past chair of her town’s Democratic committee and the past chair of the Hamden County Democratic committee as well. Originally pledged for Hillary, Mary Gail expressed solid support for Senator Barack Obaa, telling me “when everything is over, we’re going to leave here very united. It is very important that we win the White House.”
So far, Mary Gail is enjoying the convention very much. In her civilian life, she is a senior high school teacher (US history and government) in Enfield, Connecticut, just over the state line. I caught Mary Gail as she headed over to meet some friends before the formal convention session starts later this afternoon, and she was gracious enough to give me a few minutes of her time to talk about the election. Reporting that journalists in her home town are still obsessed over the Clinton-Obama split, Mary Gail emphasizes that despite her early support for Clinton, and that the party must honor the depth of that support, she is solidly backing Obama.
“People have to understand that this was a good and hard-fought campaign on both sides. This is the first time a woman has gotten anywhere near this far, and that has to be honored, not so much for us [Hillary supporters] as for our children. We have to look to the future, into the 21st century, even as we respect our past.”