This campaign has been incredibly hideous, so I was thrilled to catch the annual Al Smith memorial dinner on tv last night.
The Al Smith dinner is a New York tradition, where politicians and the media lay off the harsh jabs and exchange anger for laughter for one night of the campaign season. Both Bush and Kerry were not invited in 2004. This year, Obama and McCain both brought the house down.
McCain had me cracking up! I was so happy to see this John McCain again, the man I loved in his regular Letterman and Daily Show appearances, who wasn’t afraid to make fun of himself (or Hillary!) and compliment his opponent.
In case you missed McCain’s words of praise for Senator Obama, he said this:
“Political opponents can have a little trouble in seeing the best in each other, but I’ve had a few glimpses of this man at his best, and I admire his great skill, energy and determination. There was a time when a mere invitation of an African-American citizen to dine at the White House was taken as an outrage and an insult in many quarters. Today is a world away from the crude and prideful bigotry of that time, and good riddance. I can’t wish my opponent luck, but I do wish him well.”
Purely on a superficial note, Barack was very handsome in white tie. And his jokes were equally hilarious! I was LMAO when he went at Giuliani.
At the end of his speech, Obama closed with compliments to McCain:
““But I’ve said before and I think it bears repeating, that there are very few of us who have served this country with the same dedication and honor and distinction as Senator McCain. No matter what divisions or differences or arguments we’re having right now, we ultimately belong to something bigger and more lasting than a political party. We belong to a community. We share a country. We are all children of God.”
It was a beautiful thing to witness amidst all of this ugliness. And an important reminder – whoever wins this election on November 5 needs to unite us all despite our differences. Witnessing these powerful political figures set aside their partisanship and emotion to celebrate each other with humor and seemingly genuine warmth was wonderful. It’s remarkable. Now if only we who vote for them could all do the same.
I’ll be back to beauty next week, bellas. Promise! Happy weekend to all!