Seattle Times: Obama Brings 'Gift of Friendship'

Seattle Times photo by Steve RingmanCan you feel the excitement, the energy, the mystical unity our country is taking on since Barack Obama's election? The Seattle Times sure can.

President-elect Obama is bringing America together, and luckily for reporter Sanjay Bhatt, he had the high privilege of dutifully writing a 42-paragraph metro section story about Obama fans Teresa Pelayo, Sam Song and Tabetha Thomas. The Times took the story out of relative obscurity in the paper's local section to rest on the paper's Web site front page.

But wait, it gets better! These three close friends used to be rivals for delegate slots to the 2008 Democratic Convention. Who said Obama can't perform miracles? The Seattle Times sure didn't:

The Seattle-area trio were brought together last year by chance when, like thousands of others, they competed to be Obama delegates to the Democratic National Convention. Introduced at a bookstore last April, they bonded during the campaign.

Now the trio plan to celebrate their victory back in the District of Columbia, even if it's on a shoestring budget that won't allow them to attend many marquee events.

"If Obama had never run, we would have never met," Pelayo said. "Obama has given us the gift of friendship."


When they arrived at their separate precinct caucuses, each felt lost. But as caucus leaders asked for volunteers to be delegates for Obama at the legislative district level, Thomas raised her hand. So did Song and Pelayo.

"I was inspired by him [Obama]," Thomas said.

Pelayo, Song and Thomas didn't get to know one other until the 1st Legislative District Democrats organized a meeting in mid-April at Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park. There, each polished the speeches they would give in their bids to win delegate slots to the national convention in Denver.

The odds were against them. Chris Roberts, a doctoral candidate in political science at the UW, sized it up like this: "You either had to be well known or had to have a very compelling story."


Though Pelayo, Song and Thomas lost their bids to become delegates, they all flew to Denver anyway and managed to get into some events. 

Yes! Hope prevails, and the Seattle Times makes sure we notice, including the story on the Web site's first page.

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