Wednesday, February 07, 2007

"Oklahoma!" Elevator Speech

Just back from the DNC winter meeting and time with the other 50 state chairs and the other 390 DNC members. There's something about wearing those oversized name tags and credentials in an elevator that is quite amusing. So you're standing there in the elevator and someone says to you, "you from Oklahoma?" And you respond, "yes, Oklahoma" and sometimes it's "yes, Boomer Sooner." The follow up is generally something like this, "I know someone from Oklahoma" or "oh, yeah, you have tornadoes there." Then the elevator door opens and there's no time to brag on our great state. If there were time, what would you say about Oklahoma? What do people know about Oklahoma?

The Tulsa World has a story about just that based on a survey done by Zogby in December. Read the story here.

Overall 47% of Americans surveyed have a favorable impression of Oklahoma, an impression much improved in the past few years as both public and private groups have aggresively worked to promote a favorable impression that will ultimately bring new jobs and economic opportunities to our citizens.

So what's your "elevator speech" for Oklahoma? What can you say about Oklahoma in the time it takes to ride up a couple of floors in an elevator with strangers? Is it Oklahoma the Big Friendly? Is it Oklahoma home of 39 federally recognized Indian tribes? Is it Oklahoma farms, football, and a future in medical research?

Now at the DNC meeting the follow up question is often "red or blue?" How will we answer that in 2008? Will it be red or blue? It's up to you, Democrats, to make it what you want. It's your time to claim this state for the people. Think about your Oklahoma elevator speech then work on your Oklahoma Democrat elevator speech. This is our time. Going up?

(The music of "Oklahoma!" the tragedy of the Oklahoma City bombing, football, American Indians and oil are how most Americans think of the Sooner State, according to a recent Zogby International poll. "Oklahoma!" photo courtesy The Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization; photo illustration by DAVID CARMAN / Tulsa World)

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