As told by journalists, politicians, a doorman, the Alabama football team and Henry Winkler.
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — Joni Ernst, U.S. Senate candidate, has a banana, a cup of coffee, and a 31-foot RV painted with American flags, landscapes of corn, and hogs.
She also has Iowa stretching vastly out in front of her. Seven counties today, eight counties yesterday, 99 counties in 44 days, and a tour she’s calling “Iowa Knows Best” that is intended to persuade Iowans to send her to Washington so she can show the federal government a better way: “the Iowa way.” The Iowa way is fiscal responsibility, she has been telling the people on this tour. The Iowa way is cutting taxes and balancing budgets. “The Iowa way is working,” she says at most stops — it’s the rest of the country that’s broken.
SYRACUSE, N.Y. —The immigration rallies — the protesters and the buses of undocumented immigrants that upended Southern California in early July — had already been on the news for a week when, 2,000 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border, Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner got an e-mail:
On a recent morning, in the second week of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford’s self-immolation tour, George Smitherman was getting his morning coffee at a Starbucks when the man behind him in line recognized his face. “George,” the man said, we wished it had been you.
What was happening to Rand Paul, 12 hours into this windmill-tilting crusade against drones (but not against droning), as the sun set and the moon rose and he talked and he talked and he — oh, how he talked. What was happening to his vocal cords? To the soles of his feet? What was happening — don’t pretend you don’t want to know — to his bladder?
It’s not like last time, and everywhere you look, someone wants to remind you of that.
Hotel rooms are still available (not like laaaast time) and there will be only two official inaugural balls (not like laaaast time) and nobody is going to wait for hours in a cattle-packed tunnel, waving their purple tickets. (Last time! So much fun!)