NORML rallies at colorful DFL state convention

by K.C. Howard

Grassroots politics got a whole new meaning at the DFL state convention Saturday.

Approximately 150 marijuana advocates gathered in the Minneapolis Convention Center lobby to have their views heard and smelled by the DFL Party.

“We know there is very little talk about legalizing here,” said Jason Samuelson, a University senior and political science major. “It should have been part of (the platform) a long time ago.”

Having just come from the Million Marijuana March in Loring Park, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws members banged bongos, sang and danced in the lobby for about a half hour.

As they came and went, the smell of marijuana wafted into Hall “B” of the convention center, where thousands of delegates, campaign advocates and political spectators paraded and cheered for their candidate of choice.

Despite dedication to individual candidates, most delegates agreed neither State Auditor Judi Dutcher, Sen. Becky Lourey, DFL-Kerrick, nor Sen. Roger Moe, DFL-Erskine, would be a poor choice for the
DFL-endorsed gubernatorial candidate.

“It’s like the delegates are on Valium,” said convention co-chairman David Lillehaug. “There is a lot of unity and very little fighting. That bodes well.”

Everyone seemed in good spirits. Even the transvestite – who stood outside the convention Friday passing out flyers for his campaign, “Hedwig for governor” – danced around the center with fellow campaigners Saturday.

“It’s time to pass the boa,” said Hedwig, who was promoting Outward Spiral’s theatrical production of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch.”

But Hedwig was not the only dancing queen to be seen at the DFL convention.

Across the lobby from voting delegates, local teens competed in a dance competition, where sequins and bellbottoms ruled.

It all made for a colorful spectacle in the lobby, where the smell of marijuana still lingered, and red, white and blue DFL diehards waited in vending lines with teens in hot pink unitards for $2 Cokes and $6 salads.

K.C. Howard welcomes comments at [email protected]