You wouldn’t think that jewelry could sway an election. But sometimes a ring (or four of them) has a little extra bling.
Franco Harris is a Super Bowl MVP and four-time champion with one of the great sports dynasties, the Pittsburgh Steelers of the late 1970s. Now he is a Barack Obama delegate representing, of course, Pennsylvania.
He’s tells me moments after Obama’s nomination became official it took a lot of research and debate before he choose Barack over Hillary.
“It was a tough decision,” he says.
In the end, it was Barack’s enthusiasm and toughness under pressure that swayed him. Harris knows a little about pressure. Remember the Immaculate Reception?
Anyway, Harris landed in Denver about two hours ago and is truly enjoying being a part of the Democratic National Convention.
“The whole thing is exciting,” he says. “Barack has fans from 8 years old to 80—when can you remember a child knowing who’s running for president? …This is my first time on the floor. It’s really exciting just to see the process, be a part of it.”
During a campaign stop in Pittsburgh, Harris rode Obama’s tour bus for a block or so and got to witness the mania that surrounds each stop for the Illinois senator. That was part of the process, but nothing like being on the floor of the Pepsi Center as the first black man in our nation’s history received a major party nomination.
Thousands screamed as Hillary Clinton moved to end the state-by-state roll call in the name of unity. Barack Obama is her presidential candidate now, she has made it clear in two speeches the last two days that she is behind him.
After that motion passed, the crowd erupted to second the motion, and nearly unanimously past the vote before any dissenters could break through the noise.
Harris was one of the few left a little disappointed as he posed for photos with numerous fans—when Clinton called the end to the alphabetical role call, the vote stopped at New York, and Harris, standing with his Pennsylvania delegation, never got to stand at the podium to support his candidate.
“The role call ended, the game is over,” Harris says. “I’m fine with that. …Now it’s a tight race. This is going to be a tough fight.”
Harris is going to continue speaking out on behalf of Barack. He still looks in game shape nearly three decades removed from his last Super Bowl title.
He hopes the rings are likely equally as impressive to the voters.
“I hope it will work,” Harris says. “I hope it shines really bright.”
— Jacob Harkins, Yellow Scene Magazine editor
More DNC coverage here.