[Rostenkowski raw #202]

Raw footage from the 1981 documentary "Rostenkowski," a portrait of House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dan Rostenkowski, a powerful figure in Chicago (and national) politics. This tape captures the mood at a rally for Rostenkowski in the field house in Chicago's Pulaski Park (which sits in Rostenkowski's district on Chicago's northwest side). A small boy has trouble pronouncing "Rostenkowski." A polka band plays. At about ten minutes in, Rostenkowski enters the rally, and climbs the stage to give a speech. He says a few words, and then introduces Richard M. Daley, who is running for the office of State's Attorney.

00:00Copy video clip URL Tape begins with footage from the venue lobby as supporters file into the auditorium. People seem to be fairly excited about the festivities.

01:45Copy video clip URL Weinberg talks with a child about his Rostenkowski t-shirt and why he is at the rally. Weinberg asks,  “What does it say on your shirt?” The child responds, “Rostenowski,” pronouncing the Congressman’s name incorrectly. Weinberg then asks, “Who is that?” The child then responds to the question by shrugging his shoulders.

02:18Copy video clip URL Quick cut to other audience members as they await Rostenkowski’s arrival. The clicking and clattering of the noisemakers serves as a bed for this portion of the video. The shots of those in attendance flow quite well into one another. At one point the camera cuts to a group of musicians playing a few numbers before the festivities begin. Blumberg focuses in on individual people and gets a lot of awkward reactions and smiles. Some of those in attendance look fairly glum as well. This lasts for several minutes.

10:23Copy video clip URL Rostenkowski makes his entrance and is greeted by throngs of confetti. The sound transfers over to stereo at around eleven and a half minutes, right as the Congressman begins to speak. He urges the crowd to let loose when the people running for public office arrive. “And all I ask of you is that you give them the thrill of their lifetime when they come to the 32nd district.” Rostenkowski then announces the various political figures who will be showing up later that evening, one of them being Richard M. Daley, who was running for State’s Attorney at the time. Rostenkowski steps down from the podium and makes his way down the aisle toward the back of the venue, but quickly turns around and goes back up onto the stage after having more confetti thrown at him. He steps up to the podium and scolds the crowd for throwing the confetti, telling a story about how Richard J. Daley nearly choked to death after having confetti thrown at his face during a political event. Ironically, Rostenkowski then urges the crowd the get a little crazy.

15:47Copy video clip URL Tape ends.

 

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