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with the DCR staff, 6/2/00

Dc: This is DCR, a news program Not to Be Believed.
This is convention weekend for the Enough! Party. Long awaited and very controversial, it's finally underway just down the street at the Decorah International Convention Complex, Resort and mini-golf. Here at DCR, we're committed to covering this event. We've been the only ones following the Enough! Party and we've got our full crew here. Bud Buck. Wendy Vapors. Brick Walters. And anchoring the coverage, our political correspondent, Jennifer Hampster. Jennifer?

(sfx: Burstyn droning on in the bg)

Jennifer: Yes, I'm here!

Dc: What's happening right now? Some kind of speech?

Jennifer: Not just ANY speech. This is "The Sprawling Medical Nomination Acceptance Speech," being given by Governor Burstyn and underwritten by one of his corporate sponsors, "Sprawling Medical."

Dc: That's right, the Enough! Party is doing extreme disclosure.

Jennifer: Every one of their financial entanglements has been revealed. It's all out on the table, even the soft money. But that also means almost every time someone steps up to the microphone there's a sponsorship connected with it.

Dc: All the way up to the final roll call of the states?

Jennifer: Yes … that's "The Banflab Roll Call of the States." It's been underwritten. It pays for the convention.

Dc: And right now Governor Burstyn is speaking?

Jennifer: Yes, but let's ignore it. Political speeches are so … like Disneyland. Everything is planned and tested. There's no spontaneity. The real issue here is Senator Spleen. Will he be here or won't he?
Nobody knows.

Dc: For our listeners who haven't been following the Enough! Party process, perhaps a little bit of background information is in order here.

Jennifer: Oh, nonsense! Who has time for that? Bud Buck has cornered Senator Spleen's campaign manager, Rhonda Alonzo. Bud?

Bud: Yes, Jennifer, I'm here with Rhonda Alonzo. What's the deal with your guy? Is he going to be here or not?

Rhonda: Senator Spleen will be addressing the convention by satellite from a remote location.

Bud: What's the point of that?

Rhonda: Well as you know, we're running a contest right now where the first registered voter to find Senator Spleen wins a hundred thousand dollars from the campaign treasury.

Bud: How are you supposed to claim the prize?

Rhonda: You have to physically be hanging on to the Senator when you redeem him at one of our regional campaign offices.

Bud: Are reporters eligible for the …

Rhonda: No, they are not! But you can imagine what it would be like to bring Senator Spleen into this hall under these conditions. We'd be inviting a mob scene.

Bud: He'd be torn apart.

Rhonda: And that would give an unfair advantage to our opponent.

Jennifer: Rhonda, this is Jennifer Hampster. What about the party rule that says a candidate for national office has to be at the convention to receive the nomination?

Rhonda: Our people are working right now to suspend that rule.

Bud: Why don't you suspend the contest instead?

Rhonda: Well, Bud, we feel like we've got momentum going here. The whole nation is caught up in the mystery of this.

Jennifer: But you don't really expect the delegates to vote for someone who's not here. Do you?

Rhonda: I think for the Enough! Party, winning is the most important thing. Even if it means nominating a guy who … you don't know his whereabouts, exactly.

Jennifer: This will just feed the rumors.

Rhonda: I can't help that.

Jennifer: Can you deny, then, that you are holding your candidate prisoner and that the staff has taken over the campaign completely and he's just a figure head, fronting for your own twisted ambitions?

Rhonda: That's a lie.

Jennifer: Can you deny that your campaign lies freely about issues large and small?

Rhonda: That's false. Next.

Bud: How about the rumor that the Senator is in a coma?

Rhonda: False.

Jennifer: Paralyzed in a roller blading accident?

Rhonda: Nope.

Bud: Brain in jar, still issuing orders?

Rhonda: Yeah, I wish.

Jennifer: Yes?

Rhonda: Nope.

Jennifer: Well what you're doing here is not going to help settle these rumors.

Rhonda: We don't WANT to settle the rumors. Rumors create buzz. Buzz gets attention. Attention wins elections.

Dc: Rhonda, this is Dale Connelly.

Jennifer: (exasperated) Oh, great.

Dc: Rhonda, you mentioned reporters are ineligible to win the 100 thousand dollar prize … are anchors and talking heads OK?

Rhonda: Sorry, all employees of news gathering organizations are ineligible.

Dc: Drat!

Jennifer: Oh, grow up.

Rhonda: We want an ordinary registered voter. And BY THE WAY, this has really increased voter registration! And ours is the ONLY political campaign anywhere talking about making a WINNER of somebody else. The rest of these guys, it's "me, me, me," you know? But with Senator Spleen … somebody could really make some serious bucks here. That's one of our differences. We're people focused. This candidate is always thinking about the people. He's watching out for people. In some cases, he's running away from people, and I think people are noticing it.

Dc: We're going to go to Brick Walters, who has someone from the Burstyn camp. Brick?

Brick: Yes. I'm here with Pepper Larson, who's a floor director for the Burstyn campaign. What are you saying to people about the rule suspension to allow the convention to nominate someone who is not actually here?

Pepper: What we're saying is … Mussolini could be nominated under these conditions. It's not right.

Brick: Mussolini is dead.

Pepper: My point exactly.
Nobody has seen Senator Spleen since March. You can't nominate someone who might be dead to run for president.
Vice president, maybe. But not president.

Brick: Do you think you have the votes to block the rules suspension?

Pepper: It depends on when the rules committee decides to bring it to the floor. We're doing our best to create a number of nightmare scenarios and an atmosphere of paranoia and distrust.

Brick: What are those scenarios?

Pepper: You've heard some already. Brain in a jar. Bitten by vampires. Alien abductee. In the minds of the delegates, Spleen could be any of these things by now. If we've done our job.

Brick: Thanks Pepper. Pepper Larson of the Burstyn campaign. Back to you, Jennifer.

Jennifer: Thanks Brick. Back to you, Dale.

Dc: Thanks, Jennifer. This is live coverage of the Enough! Party convention, on DCR, a news program not to be believed. Back to you Jennifer.

Jennifer: Thanks, Dale. Over to you, Bud.

Bud: Thanks, Jennifer. We're going to send it back to Brick. Brick?

Brick: Thanks Bud. Here's Wendy.

Wendy: Hello.

Jennifer: Just a minute! This is Jennifer taking it back from Brick.

Brick: You can't. I gave it to Wendy.

Jennifer: I gave it to you and I'm taking it back.

Brick: No, I got it from Bud.

Bud: I gave it to Brick, Jennifer.

Jennifer: I don't want Wendy to have it for another dopey report about funny hats or dogs wearing sweaters or any of that stupid feature stuff. This is a political convention.

Wendy: You didn't like the story about the hats?

Jennifer: Let's stick to the substance, shall we?

Dc: Jennifer? I love reports on the convention sideshow.

Wendy: That's right. It's called "human interest." 'Cause it's interesting to humans.

Bud: I liked the story about dogs in the delegations. I didn't know you could bring your dog to one of these things.

Brick: I thought the funny hat feature was stellar journalism, Jennifer.

Dc: Sounds like you're over ruled.

Jennifer: (exasperated) Since when is political coverage a democracy?

Dc: Take it away, Wendy.

Wendy: Yes, I'm here to do a colorful, but stupid feature report on the bathrooms. Lois Krantz is an uncommitted delegate from Georgia.
Hello Lois.

Lois: Hello.

Wendy: What is the most frustrating thing about this convention?

Lois: Well it's got to be the number of "facilities" for the ladies. There is always a line, particularly between major events like speeches.
There ARE a lot of women here, and we all know that stadiums and convention centers and such are very unprepared.

Wendy: Yes, it seems to be a problem wherever you go! So to speak.

Lois: I'm pretty disappointed. This is one problem I've had enough of, and I thought the Enough! Party would be at the forefront of recognizing and correcting this situation.

Wendy: Well maybe someone will offer that up as a party "platform."
That sounds like a good issue.

Jennifer: OK, thanks Wendy. Let's go across the floor now for …

Bud: I don't think Wendy is done yet.

Brick: Her report is just getting interesting.

Dc: Really, Jennifer. You could wait for your cue.

Jennifer: (disgusted groan)

Dc: Wendy?

Wendy: Yes, thank you.
So what did you do, Lois? Just wait?

Lois: I did not. I noticed there was no traffic in and out of the men's room, so I opened the door, I said "anybody in here?" and no one answered, so in I went. There were two stalls in there but the first one I went to … the door was locked. I peeked underneath and sure enough, a guy was in there, so I decided to wait outside.

Wendy: Fascinating.

Jennifer: OK … thanks for the details. Now it's time to move on.

Dc, Bud, Brick: Not so fast, wait a minute, etc.

Wendy: Is there more to the story, 'cause I am getting a signal to wrap it up.

Lois: Well, yes. As I was leaving I caught his reflection in the mirror. He was peeking out from under the partition to see what was going on, and I was very surprised to see that it was Senator Spleen.

Wendy: It WAS?

Brick, Bud, Jennifer and Dc: Who? Where? When? Are you sure?

Lois: I work next door to one of the regional offices for the New York campaign. I've been surrounded by his posters for the last six months, and it looked just like him except his head was upside down.

Wendy: But if it WAS Senator Spleen … why didn't you run back to capture him and claim the 100 thousand dollars?

Lois: Considering where he was … where I was … I went to get my husband to come help. When we got back … the stall was empty.

Brick: And you're sure it was the Senator.

Lois: I don't think I'll ever forget those tiny black eyes of his.

Wendy: And they were upside down at the time!

Lois: Yes, it was a sight.

Wendy: All right then. We have "a development!" A trained observer has spotted the leading candidate physically present here at the convention that is expected to nominate him to run for president of the United States.
And in this strange set of circumstances, that is news! I'm Wendy Vapors, and I have a scoop! Back to the booth.

(dc might cut to the end here if we are pressed for time)
Dc: Thanks Wendy. Dale Connelly here, and I'm going to hand it off to Jennifer Hampster for a reaction.

Jennifer: And I'm going to hand it off to Bud Buck, who is near Spleen campaign manage Rhonda Alonzo …

Bud: Yes, I 'm a few feet from Rhonda but she's on her cell phone.
Let's listen in …

Rhonda: … don't care how you do it but I want you to search the hall.
There are people saying he's here and the place is in an uproar …
We need to put a lid on this and … Hey! What's with the microphone?

Bud: Um … I'm gathering atmospheric sound … for a documentary about the political process in America today.

Rhonda: Well this isn't the political process, it's a private conversation.

Bud: Isn't the private conversation the very essence of politics?

Rhonda: Don't make me come over there!

Bud: Jennifer?

Jennifer: Brick?

Brick: Bud?

Bud: Dale?

Dc: If Senator Spleen's in the hall, that would change things dramatically.

All: Yes, right, uh huh, you betcha.

Dc: We'll continue our live coverage of the Enough! Party convention on DCR in just a few minutes.
(DCR is on the internet. Go to MPR.ORG to click on scripts and recordings from past shows. Coming up, the report of the rules committee, more perhaps on the bathroom problem, and the search for Spleen. Is he the candidate or not? As DCR continues.

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