Thursday, September 4, 2008

And There Was Griff!

And then we ran into Griff Jenkins, FOX News brave young reporter of all protests. He actually came to our hotel last nite when trouble erupted with the anarchists.
Let me tell you what happened last nite.

After the roll call of each state happened we boarded our bus extremely tired and hungry - dinner had been at 3 PM. We got back to our hotel and began to look for a food option. The only thing that available was to order pizza.

Our delegation did have a hospitality suite open with a nacho bar so we went there to have that while we ordered and waited for our pizza. Our favorite cohorts Kathy and Margie so we began to debrief from our wonderful Sarah Palin nite while we watched Rudi's speech being replayed on FOX.

Luanne got a call from Iris Lily that their bus was being held by police a few blocks from our hotel because of an incident with protesters outside out hotel. We had no idea that was happening but decided to get right down there and rescue our bus.

Once on the street we saw this indeed was quite a big incident happening. The intersection right at the corner of our block was packed with police in riot gear. There was a line of 15 riot police shoulder to shoulder blocking one direction, two police cars in the other, a line of police on horses in the third, and I couldn't see the other direction.

We stepped out into the street and walked closer but were told by police we must be on the sidewalk. It all looked quite serious but we could not see the actual protesters. There were several young scruffy guys wandering. They were strictly told were to stand by police and as far as I could see they cooperated.

We walked towards the intersection and got pictures in the darkness and began saying thank you to the police. Once we did that camera's appeared in our faces and it was clear some of these camera men were with the protesters and specifically trying to get pictures of police aggression.

We found out that in the next block over thirsty people were on their knees being taken into custody. We were not sure what they had done but it turns out there had been a concert "Kill the Machine" with over 1500 young people. This was planned to agitate and send them out to destroy property etc. They had done this in Denver as well.

Th police were able to preempt and stop them before there was trouble. While we were standing there Griff from FOX News arrived to report on the trouble. He said hi and then headed out to get to work.
While standing near the corner we were suddenly alerted that some of the protesters had flanked us in, and we were advised to get closer to the hotel door. Once we got there more police vehicles swept in and began to unload tables and equipment to begin processing the protesters. A few minutes later our bus was escorted in.

We found out that all buses to our area were quietly given a multiple motorcycle escort safely to our hotel that nite. We hadn't even see this.

Thank you Minneapolis security!!

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