There are now rumors flying around that the Republican Party may postpone the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis-St. Paul, because of Tropical Storm Gustav, which is headed toward the Gulf Coast (possibly New Orleans, but almost certainly somewhere in Louisiana), and will most likely be a hurricane by the end of this week (as of now, the National Hurricane Center is saying Category 1 or 2).
Not only would this create a problem for the party, due to a some speakers being unavailable (President Bush, Governor Bobby Jindal [R-LA], and others), but it would also look bad to see news stories about Republicans celebrating and people dying and having homes destroyed in a hurricane.
Although the media would just naturally have to report both stories, and people would correlate this situation with Hurricane Katrina, I hope that Obama (or other Democrats) wouldn’t attack McCain (or Republicans as a whole) for not postponing the convention (ultimately it’s not his choice), because that would be extremely low. Conventions can’t be postponed because of a natural disaster, and hurricanes are a common thing in the month of August. The Democrats wouldn’t have postponed it, but the whole Katrina fiasco (which was actually more of Ray Nagin and Governor Kathleen Blanco’s fault than Bush’s) would seem to be replayed here.
Matt Burns, a spokesman for the RNC told reporters on Tuesday, “We are planning for our convention to open on Monday. Like all Americans, we are monitoring the situation closely in the Gulf.”
An anonymous GOP official told reporters, “You would have to dramatically change the nature of what you do. Much less partisan. Much less political. Otherwise, it’s the elephant in the room.”
There is also one other possible reason that the convention would be postponed: Bobby Jindal getting the pick for running mate. Although unlikely, his name has been tossed in the hat of possible picks. I won’t be surprised if rumors of a postponement will make his Intrade stock scores take a jump later on today as this story gets picked up by the mainstream media.
However, I have also heard that it would be political gold if Jindal was picked and then left the convention to go back to Louisiana.
Personally, I still think Mitt Romney (R-MA), but maybe Governor Tim Pawlenty (R-MN) will be the choice.
I’ll keep you updated as this situation continues.
Tags: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Bobby Jindal, Convention, Democratic National Convention, Democrats, DNC, Election, Elections, George Bush, George W. Bush, Governor, Hurricane Gustav, Hurricane Katrina, John McCain, Kathleen Blanco, Katrina, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Matt Burns, Mayor, Minneapolis, Minnesota, Mitt Romney, National Hurricane Center, New Orleans, Politics, Ray Nagin, Republican, Republican National Convention, Republicans, RNC, St. Paul, Tim Pawlenty