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Sic Semper Tyrannis

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Well, I'm here.

Arrived in Minnesota today - first Saint Paul, where I spent an hour admiring the vast security surrounding the Xcel Center, then the convention center in Minneapolis, where I picked up my credentials.

At this point, as readers probably know, the convention itself is in a state of flux. Since Hurricane Gustav is about to hit the Louisiana coast, Monday's convention activities have been cancelled. That includes speeches by President Bush and V.P. Cheney, who'd already cancelled their appearances in any case.

The McCain campaign put out a statement regarding all that today.

Rick Davis, campaign manager for John McCain 2008, announced that the upcoming Republican National Nominating Convention is making serious revisions to the convention program and surrounding activities. Davis said, "We are deeply concerned about the safety and welfare of the residents of the Gulf State region. Our top priority is to assist those who will be affected by Hurricane Gustav. This is not a time for politics or celebration; it is a time for us to come together as Americans and assist the residents of the Gulf States."
The statement also says they have to start the convention tomorrow, on the 1st, because of a resolution the RNC passed last year.

I think they could probably convene, then suspend, and re-convene at another time, but it's a little hard to believe they'd do that, considering the amount of effort that's gone into the convention so far.

A little hard to believe, but not beyond the realm of possibility. I think the DNC's decision to "award" delegates from Michigan and Florida based on elections that didn't occur proves that there are ways around past decisions.

Back to convention changes: I understand the Democrats have followed suit and suspended their "war room" due to the hurricane, although with the Republicans suspending activities, there isn't a whole lot for a war room to do anyway.

ST. PAUL - Democrats in town to staff an aggressive "war room" operation during the GOP convention have instead laid down their arms as Hurricane Gustav bears down on the Gulf Coast.

Republicans announced a dramatic rewrite Sunday of their convention script, dropping political speeches from Monday's program. So, Democrats are responding in kind.

A Sunday media tour of the party's operation in St. Paul that was to have featured Minnesota Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar was abruptly canceled.

And with the cancellation of Monday's convention appearances by President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney, Democrats shelved a "More of the Same" rally that was to have featured hundreds of protesters. A news event featuring Reps. Chet Edwards, D-Texas, and Hilda Solis, D-Calif., was also canceled.
I, obviously, am disappointed, but there's not a whole lot to be done about it. If Hurricane Gustav does turn out to be a big'un, if there is lots of damage, neither side can really be up here playing politics at the same time. It's bad politics, not to mention bad taste.

I have a couple pictures for you. MSNBC has a big stage set up for their operation in a small park near the Xcel Center:

Not sure what they'll be doing, if the convention is suspended - probably talking about how the convention is suspended, and trying to keep protesters out of the shot.

I saw some Code Pinksters in Minneapolis, where delegates were gathering at the convention center:

And this truck. I just liked the paint job:

Run, Han!

More tomorrow, whether or not there's any official convention business going on.

God Bless the people on the Gulf Coast.