by Adrienne Kirshbaum
On the evening of April 8 at the Northbrook Pinstripes, a capacity crowd was treated to the wit and wisdom of U.S. Representative Alan Grayson. The event was sponsored by The Coalition to Restore Democracy, a nonpartisan association of 25 member groups, each dedicated to improving government. The driving force behind the gathering was that indefatigable activist Sharon Sanders of Northbrook.
Tenth Dems, a member of the Coalition, participated in the event. Our founding chair, Lauren Beth Gash, was called to the podium to introduce Rep. Grayson. In her remarks, she mentioned the several Harvard degrees that the congressman had earned, and the various successful careers he had forged in the private sector before becoming the U.S. Representative from Orlando, Florida.
We all know how broken our government is, and Rep. Grayson didn’t try to soften the facts. But he leavened his remarks with humor that made the bitter news easier to swallow. He spoke about the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision and how that unfortunate action has affected the political landscape. He told of how he took finance reform into his own hands and raised a prodigious amount of money by appealing to small donors giving $200 or less. He urged his audience to get involved and fight to return our country to a place where everyone has a voice. He declared that “money can’t vote,” and led the audience in an enthusiastic chant of that important truth.
Unlike many political events, “An Evening with Alan Grayson” featured really good food! An impressive small-plates buffet included an array of delicious choices, from crudités to gourmet pizza. At the evening’s end, those liberal icons Ben and Jerry provided ice cream cups in some of their most popular flavors so attendees could go home with a good taste in their mouths.