Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz's trip to the Democratic National Convention on Monday started out rough but ended with a sweet subway ride.
He and Erie County Democratic Party Chairman Jeremy Zellner were both on a turboprop plane to Philly that passed through a band of thunderstorms as it headed south. For about 20 minutes, the "white-knuckle" ride had Poloncarz questioning whether he'd make it to the convention at all.
But after he arrived, he said, he found himself waiting on a subway platform with Dennis Kucinich, the former Ohio congressman and a Democratic primary candidate for the presidency in 2004 and 2008. The two men traded notes on the common ties between Buffalo and Cleveland – two rust belt cities with struggling sports teams until the Cleveland Cavaliers won their NBA championship last month. Poloncarz even said that when the Buffalo Bills lose, Buffalonians are happy to root for the Browns.
Kucinich, for his part, reminisced about how former Buffalo Mayor Jimmy Griffin used to give him tips on city snow clearing when Kucinich was mayor of Cleveland and tried to get caught up on the political landscape in Buffalo.
"He was asking me what unions were still active in the Buffalo area," Poloncarz said.
Poloncarz wasn't the only one to appreciate Kucinich's presence. Bernie Sanders supporters interrupted their anti-DNC protests to greet Kucinich, now a Democratic pundit on Fox News.
— Mark Poloncarz (@markpoloncarz) July 25, 2016