Thursday, November 08, 2007

Obama? Edwards? Are you paying attention??

I'm thinking you could use this:

Hotline On Call:

NPR's David Greene reports about what happens when real people find their stories folded into the candidates' campaign rhetoric. One single mother, a waitress at Maid-Rite, famous for its meat sandwiches, chatted with Hillary Clinton during a recent campaign stop about her struggles to make ends meet. Her story wound up in HRC's stump speech, Greene reports. The waitress, meanwhile, was left wondering why the former first lady didn't leave a tip.

From NPR:

I followed Clinton during a recent bus tour across Iowa, when she and her entourage pulled into a Maid-Rite, a greasy spoon famous for its loose-meat sandwich. Clinton settled into a red stool at the counter, ate a sandwich, chatted with her waitress and then was on her way.

The scene gave Clinton perfect fodder for her next few stump speeches. Turns out her waitress was a single, working mom — just the kind of voter Democrats are courting aggressively this year.

Clinton recalled the meeting for an audience up the road in Boone. "The woman waiting on us — it was her first day," she said, adding, "She was a little nervous. Single mom, raised two boys, works at a nursing home and always has a second job."

If she's elected president, Clinton promised, people like her waitress will have it better.

The way Clinton eased the waitress into her rhetoric is something repeated day after day, by all the campaigns. But in the process, people like the waitress don't always have their stories told.

"I wished I would have been asked first," the waitress, Anita Esterday, said of Clinton's decision to insert her in a speech, adding, "I wish she would have asked if she could talk about me later. I didn't like it when someone called me up and said Hillary Clinton is talking about you. It's like, what'd I do now? What's she saying?"

When I returned to the Maid-Rite a few weeks later, Esterday said the senator had caught her off guard. But once they got talking, she was honest with Clinton about her need to work two to three jobs.

"I've been doing it all my life. Why should it change now that I'm old?" Esterday said.

Esterday does not think Clinton got it. "I don't think she understood at all what I was saying," Esterday said, adding, "I mean, nobody got left a tip that day."

Clinton may have decided not to tip. She was also never given a bill — her meal was on the house. Still, Esterday said Clinton might have left her something: "Maybe they don't carry money, I don't know."

Welcome to world of the limo liberal my dear.

Now, could someone get a hold of Obama and Edwards and make a commercial about this. Now. I think Iowa Democrats would be very interested.

Update: The Clinton campaign is saying they did leave a tip for the staff, but no one seems to know where it went. Also on Drudge..this isn't the first time Hillary has stiffed a single mom.

Update 2: Fox news is reporting that the Clinton staff did leave a generous tip, but this ABC news story says "Brad Crawford, manager of Maid-Rite caught in the political mixer, who said the senator's staff did pay a tip but "it might have not been disbursed properly."

One story is saying that everyone was tipped, so why would the waitress say that no one did? Did the manager keep the tip???? Or.....perhaps he suddenly found it, if you know what I mean. Also, one story is saying the meal was on the house and the other story is saying that the staff paid for it. Whatever.

Not a big deal, to be sure, just curious.

Update 3: Geeze. I know this whole thing is stupid, but I just hear on the news that the manager is saying that the waitress was paid her tip. So was she lying? And why would she lie??? And what is she suppose to say now? She works 3 jobs, she needs this job. Is she going to contradict her employer?? Good grief. This is just so typical of the Clintons. Just obscure the facts and no one will ever know the real truth. Ugh.