Matt Forney
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New York Campaign Dispatch, Part 1: Rochester Loves John Kasich

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After a grueling 10-hour drive from Chicago, I arrived in upstate New York on Friday night ready to hit the ground running. My first stop: a John Kasich town hall in the Rochester suburb of Greece.

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I arrived a half-hour before the event was slated to begin… and got caught in a traffic jam. Yep, the good people of Rochester were so excited to see John Kasich that traffic snaked out from the Greece Community Center, down several blocks and onto the highway itself. By the time I parked my car and got through the line (yes, there was a line), the town hall was full-up and I was shunted into an overflow room.

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The audience was dominated by oldsters per usual, but there were also a surprising number of young people in the crowd. I wager a good third of the attendees didn’t care about Kasich himself and were only there because this is the first time in decades that any presidential candidate has bothered to visit Rochester. There were about 300-400 people in the overflow room and another 500 at minimum (likely more) in the main room.

Kasich arrived late and gave us a condensed version of his stump speech, then went into the main room for the town hall. I recorded his overflow speech on video (apologies for the bad angle; people kept standing on chairs and blocking me) and listened to the rest of the town hall via the speakers.

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These two protesters came all the way from Toledo to protest Kasich’s closure of a wildlife preserve.

Watch my wrap-up video for more info on the event:

My written account of what happened will be up at Right On soon.

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