Jacob Meister and his campaign manager, Lowell Jaffe, were standing outside of a CVS Pharmacy on DuPont Circle, in Washington DC the morning of the National Equality March. Jaffe stuck his hand out as I passed and they started a campaign pitch, and I smiled and rolled my eyes. Candidates are always stopping folks outside of Wal-Mart or inside of Bob Evans, and I think at a certain point most politically active people have been desensitized to these awkward attempts to schmooze.
Hearing that Jacob was openly gay and was running for a state-wide seat in Illinois got my attention, however, and we exchanged information before I ran off to get my press pass and line up. I didn't think much of the encounter, and let it roll to the back of my mind until I started getting emails from the campaign.
Last week, Jacob Meister opened up a local campaign office here in Champaign, right on Green Street, the campus community's vibrant business center. The event couldn't have come at a more inconvenient time, but I decided to sandwich a quick visit between working out and making dinner.
The atmosphere in the Meister campaign office was really light as we awaited his arrival. The DJ was spinning Soul For Real, New Edition, TLC--it was quite the trip down memory lane. To my surprise, by the time Jacob arrived, his campaign office had become a joyfully wall-to-wall packed party. There was definitely a vibe in this room--young and old, people believe in Jacob Meister.
Speaking to Jacob the next day, I began to realize why he garnered such wide appeal. I quickly forgot I was talking to a politician, and began hearing something else. Jacob Meister is a guy who gets it...Keep Reading ILLINOIS' JACOB MEISTER AIMS TO BE THE FIRST OPENLY GAY SENATE CANDIDATE