Hel­lo again from Char­lotte! We are just an hour away now from being gaveled into ses­sion here at Time Warn­er Cable Arena.

To be hon­est, this are­na feels like the keep at the cen­ter of a giant urban fortress. I had to pass through sev­er­al lay­ers of secu­ri­ty to get in here, includ­ing a maget­nome­ter and sev­er­al secu­ri­ty checkpoints.

There are rings of fences and bar­ri­cades around this place, with police sen­tinels guard­ing all of the entrances. Chop­pers are always over­head, and joint federal/state/county police motor­cades go by often. No one is allowed to get close to the are­na unless they have a prop­er­ly-issued credential.

I feel sor­ry for the peo­ple of this city who want to get close to the action out of curios­i­ty, but can’t due to the extreme­ly heavy security.

But I do have a cre­den­tial… a floor cre­den­tial, because I’m a del­e­gate for Barack Oba­ma… and here’s what the view is like from Wash­ing­ton’s corner:

View from Washington's seats
The view from where Wash­ing­ton State’s del­e­ga­tion is seat­ed (Pho­to: Andrew Villeneuve/NPI)

We have some pret­ty incred­i­ble seats. Actu­al­ly, maybe that’s an under­state­ment. Super-incred­i­ble is more like it. It feels great to be this close to the podi­um and to the stage. To be amidst so many fel­low pro­gres­sives. Every­one is hap­py and hav­ing a good time. Lots of friend­ly greetings.

I saw Saman­tha Bee of The Dai­ly Show with Jon Stew­art out in the hall inter­view­ing a del­e­gate ear­li­er. I also passed by Radio Row and did a loop around the floor past some of the broad­cast booths. Rehearsals have been going on all after­noon, as con­ven­tion staff get ready for a big evening begin­ning at 5 PM.

I’ll check back in lat­er as we get going and the evening pro­gram starts rolling. Remem­ber, your best best for watch­ing the con­ven­tion is C‑SPAN. Fail­ing that, try the livestream, or watch on PBS, which will have the best cov­er­age of all the major net­works. Stay away from CNN — they cut away too often to talk to pun­dits. And unless you feel like tor­tur­ing your­self, don’t watch Fox.

About the author

Andrew Villeneuve is the founder and executive director of the Northwest Progressive Institute, as well as the founder of NPI's sibling, the Northwest Progressive Foundation. He has worked to advance progressive causes for over two decades as a strategist, speaker, author, and organizer. Andrew is also a cybersecurity expert, a veteran facilitator, a delegate to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, and a member of the Climate Reality Leadership Corps.

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2 replies on “LIVE from Charlotte: Washington State’s view inside Time Warner Cable Arena”

  1. Yes we watch CSPAN to get the full feel of the Con­ven­tion excite­ment. WE can inter­pret the speech­es with­out the help of the pun­dits. We do turn on MSNBC after the con­ven­tion is dis­missed to get their take on things.

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