ND Democrats Fall Thousands Short Of Crowd Size Estimate For Clinton Speech
Earlier this week North Dakota Democrat party officials were estimating big numbers for Bill Clinton’s address to their state convention this weekend. “We’re prepared for about 8,000 to 10,000 (people),” spokeswoman Alison Kelly told Forum Communications.
I didn’t say anything about that attendance estimate because I thought 10,000 people attending a speech by a former president in Grand Forks, where not a lot of presidents visit, wasn’t an unreasonable estimate. I expected them to get roughly that many attendees. In fact, I felt compelled to write a post earlier today pointing out that the big crowds expected for Clinton’s speech wouldn’t necessarily be representative of the party’s based as represented by actual delegates, which numbered less than 1,000 by official counts.
I wanted to get ahead of the hype. Maybe I didn’t need to.
It sounds like the Democrats got far, far less than the 8,000 – 10,000 people they expected for Clinton’s speech. My Democrat friend at the convention estimated roughly 2,000 attendees. The Fargo Forum’s Kristen Daum is estimating less than that even:
I’m…shocked. Again, I thought 10,000 in attendance wasn’t an unreasonable estimate.
Even the high estimate of 2,000 in the room for the speech has got to be a disappointment.
Update: My Democrat source tells me crowd estimated by the Alerus Center is 3,000. Take that for what it’s worth, but whether it’s the hundreds Daum estimated or the 3,000 the Alerus Center estimated, that’s still well short of the 8,000 – 10,000 they prepared for.
Update: My Democrat source now tells me the Alerus is estimating 6,000, but his eyeball says more like 4,000. So we’ve got estimates ranging from “hundreds” (almost certainly inaccurate) to 6,000 (almost certainly the result of a face-saving campaign). The truth, I’m sure, is somewhere in between.
Update: Here’s a picture of at least part of the crowd courtesy of SAB reporter Brian Howell:
Update: Here’s an even better picture of the crowd from a Republican friend. They’re using just a fraction of the facility. That’s a pretty small crowd in a very big venue.
Update: Even more pictures of the not-so-impressive crowd: