Countless hours to arrive in Washington, six hours in sub-freezing temperatures, and some folks with tickets couldn’t even get in after the blue gate was shut down. Then it was a two-hour line just to get in to the Capital South metro station. Did it matter? Nope. A family from Rochdale Village, Queens, had a Plan B — they went to Cong. Gregory Meeks’s office in the Raeburn House Office Building — heated, with snacks — and watched it on TV. A young man from Scranton slipped in by walking around the crowd, but his friends were not so lucky. One woman from Philadelphia was relegated to the streets, far from the jumbotrons, where she clung to the event by listening to the cheers for the mall. She didn’t care, either. “We came a long way to get here,” she explained. “Oh,” I asked “Where are you from?” “No,” she corrected, “I mean a long way, in years.”
Peabody award–winning journalist Andrea Bernstein is Senior Editor for Politics & Policy for WNYC News. She has previously served as Metro Editor, Political Director, Director of Transportation Nation, and Senior Reporter.