Today begins the frenzy after the storm — in Tampa, anyway. Programming begins in earnest at the Republican National Convention after Tropical Storm Isaac caused the main agenda to be pushed back by one day. Isaac largely bypassed Tampa, although the soon-to-be-hurricane is barreling toward the Gulf Coast — New Orleans, specifically.
While some in the GOP worry the storm will continue to affect the convention, CQ Roll Call’s David Hawkings told WAMU Morning Edition host Matt McCleskey, the National Journal predicts that Romney could shift his speech to one less about politics and more about the situation on the coast.
Romney doesn’t speak until Thursday, although he will head to the convention tonight to join his wife on stage after her speech. Others on the docket for tonight include some local favorites:
- Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, his state’s convention delegation seated front-and-center, will take the stage sometime between 8 and 9 p.m. to highlight Virginia’s economic success. For a preview of McDonnell’s remarks, tune in to the Kojo Nnamdi Show today for the governor's interview with Kojo.
- Virginia Del. Barbara Comstock will also speak tonight; she serves as Romney’s Virginia campaign co-chair and has been at work trying to improve the GOP candidate’s standing among women in Virginia.
- Artur Davis, the former Democratic candidate for Alabama governor who’s now a Republican living in Virginia, will also take the stage as a featured speaker, likely to talk about how wrong he was to support Obama in 2008, according to Hawkings.
During Monday’s lull, reporters waited for the action to start, which meant coverage of some stories off the beaten path:
In other news, WAMU will speak with the head of the D.C. GOP, Bob Kabel, this morning, and NPR Morning Edition profiles South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley — who’s also on tonight’s convention program. NPR’s Steve Inskeep also interviewed Mitt Romney’s political director, Rich Beeson, about the race as it stands now, negative attack ads, and Romney’s claim that the President removed the job-search requirement from welfare — even though experts on both sides of the aisle say that's not true.
When pressed by on the issue, Deeson paused, then added “I think reasonable people can disagree on this.”
Oh, and Ari Shapiro’s email was apparently hacked. Stay tuned for much more convention action and coverage throughout the day.