Erie County convention goers were eager to hang out at their own “Buffalo Night” party at Con Murphy’s Irish Pub after Wednesday night’s Democratic convention. But huge bus traffic tie-ups after President Obama’s convention speech kept many from attending.
“It turned from ‘Buffalo Night’ to ‘Buffalo Morning,’” said Democratic Chairman Jeremy Zellner, who had eagerly anticipated the after-party event at Con Murphy’s Irish Pub in the Windsor Suites hotel.
Zeller didn’t manage to get to the party until around 1:25 a.m. He stayed until 2:15 a.m., then had to get up bright and early Thursday morning to have breakfast with Gov. Cuomo.
“We Democrats are a hearty bunch,” he said.
Zellner was a bit heartier than Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz, who got to his hotel at 1:15 a.m. and didn’t have the energy or inclination to walk another few blocks to the pub.
For those who stayed for all of Obama’s speech, getting out of Wells Fargo Center required an hour’s wait for the bus, and another 45 minutes sitting in the bus and going nowhere as hundreds of other buses tried to file out, he said.
On the upside, Zellner said, he wasn’t the only one waiting. Standing in the same line was Congressman Brian Higgins and New York Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, who was behind him. Being top dog in the political hierarchy didn’t get them on a bus any faster.
“That really shows the equality of the Democratic Party,” Zellner said.
The time Zellner and his friends spent idling on the bus also went to good use. They engaged in an ardent discussion with disappointed Bernie Sanders supporters. Zellner relayed how disappointed New Yorkers originally were when then-New York State Sen. Hillary Clinton was defeated in the Democratic primary against Obama in the 2008 presidential election. They backed Obama then.
The Sanders supporters said they’d reluctantly support Clinton.
“We said we were kindred souls,” Zellner said.