Observations on the RNC from Monday

Aug 28, 2012 by

The Republican National Convention was scheduled to start in Tampa on Monday but in an abundance of caution, Gov. Rick Scott and RNC officials decided to postpone the start of the speaking events until Tuesday. GOP Chairman Reince Priebus did, however, officially gavel in the start of the convention on Monday at 2 p.m. and recessed less than 30 seconds later.

Before leaving the podium, Priebus:

introduced two debt clocks that will run in real time. One clock shows the actual debt of the U.S. while the second clock started at zero and will indicate the increased debt during the convention. These clocks symbolically demonstrate the Republican emphasis on the economy.
asked for a moment of silence recognizing that Tampa largely escaped Tropical Storm Isaac while those in Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida’s Panhandle remain in harm’s way.
introduced a clergyman to offer a prayer for those in Isaac’s path.
The Convention Center and the Tampa Bay Times Forum were abuzz with media activity. Print, radio and TV reporters were testing out their temporary convention digs and conducting interviews and analysis with politicos who happened to wander by, in addition to national media’s live broadcasts on location.

State delegations met for their own activities including breakfasts, meetings and parties.

Protests were lighter than anticipated while security is very heavy. Weather improved but rain, heat and humidity made getting to and from the Forum rather challenging.

The speaking schedules continue to be refined. Tuesday’s convention activities begin at 2 p.m. and after a brief recess around 6:40 p.m., continue with a political star-studded evening schedule that has Ann Romney and Chris Christie speaking during the 10 o’clock prime-time slot.

My ABC Action News gig started with brief analysis during the 5:30 live broadcast from the 5th floor of the Forum.

All columns are (c) Paula Dockery | No reprint rights to whole columns are ever granted without express permission. | To syndicate Paula Dockery's columns please write to PBDockery@gmail.com