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Harry Reid at Home

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Harry Reid is in his home state, parked in a skybox overlooking the YearlyKos convention hall and having one-on-one meetings with bloggers and MSMers. I ask him about -- what else -- Iraq: "We passed a law in the senate," he says, "by 79 votes, that 2006 will be a year of significant transition in Iraq. In the next two weeks, we need to define exactly what this means. That's why I've been meeting with Biden and Dodd and Feingold and Kerry to clarify a unified Democratic position. It's not easy, because they are all running for president, and they have their own individual positions. But that's my job right now -- to help come up with a clear Democratic position." I offer that such a position exists, and it has been put forward by Jack Murtha. He doesn't disagree. Let's hope it's not because he's so courtly and polite.

Ron Brownstein of the LA Times follows me for his one on one, and we suddenly find ourselves comparing not positions on Iraq, but outfits at the convention. The senator is in a shirt and tie without a jacket, Brownstein is in a shirt and jacket without a tie. Markos is in a t-shirt and jeans, but all three men on my panel on foreign policy were in dark suits and ties. And not a single pair of pajamas as far as the eye can see.

I ask Ron -- a preeminent MSMer after all -- what he's making of all this: "When that many people are talking to each other," he replies, "something important is happening. We just don't know exactly what it translates to, and many of the participants are asking the same questions. They know they are part of something that is changing political life, but everybody is trying to get their arms around what the electoral and governing impact is going to be."