The last time yrmama was in Tipton it was to plead guilty to unlawful swimming with about 25 of her colleagues. It was a high school reunion on a hot afternoon and we decided to go for a swim. Someone said, “Hey, I remember a place we swam once!” So we caravanned to a beautiful old quarry full of cool cool water shaded by trees and started paddling around. Then the sheriff came and we all caravanned to the courthouse. We were in our early twenties with unfinished frontal lobes and we did unlawfully swim
On this trip to Tipton I picked up my friend Lola who told me that despite her advanced age and long tenure in Iowa had never attended a campaign event and wanted to go with me! We arrived at the Tipton Family Restaurant and got in line to Meet and Greet Elizabeth Warren 45 minutes early. The line got longer but never moved – because the building was already full. (Lola made the couple right behind us into our new friends because she grew up in Maine and they had gone there on vacation once so waiting was only cold, not unpleasant. I have to learn how to do that.)) The compromise was announced that Liz would speak to each group separately starting with the hundred or so of us outside because we were cold.
Suddenly she popped around the corner of the building and leapt gracefully up the steps in front of us. I took in the vibe and liked her immediately, more than I thought I would. My new friend Liz is warm and steely.
A woman in the back raised her hand and said that although she likes Senator Liz a lot, she was very disappointed by the way she and the other Democrats handled the Al Franken situation – basically, that Senator Al is one of us and despite his egregious behavior the country needs him. It wasn’t a question, just a statement of displeasure. Senator Warren listened and left a silence. Then regretfully said, “I know.” She could have been defensive or blame-laying or at least awkward, but she just left it there. A few people called out “Give him a job!” and she nodded. That exchange overlaying what I know of her solid specificity and ferocity made me love her. I bought a t-shirt.