Saturday, May 31, 2008

Convention wrapup 

After one more battle over the national delegate slate -- won handily by the pro-McCain/party regular forces, though not without about an hour of tense debate, and which featured a speech by Michael that brought a broad majority of the house up and cheering -- Karl Rove is now speaking after which the convention will be over. The house is at this point only half-full. There will be a couple of meetings for the national delegates and alternate, and a state central committee meeting, but most of the hall will empty in about 30-45 minutes.

Rove's speaking skills serve to show the difference between those ready for national stage and those that are not. The people here are pleased by the comments where Democrats are criticized. His comment on Rev. Wright: "I'd be more comfortable with Sen. Obama if there was moral indignation than personal indignation." And then support for the Iraq War, which drew even more favorable applause when comparing who spoke to their enemies when. Foreign policy issues were most favorably received by the convention, though he certainly causes the Paul supporters to seethe.

Longtime convention attendees that I spoke to this morning thought this was not as well handled a convention in re the rules and the nominating slates, and there was a fair number of people unhappy with the degree to which McCain floor managers were signaling votes on every item. It's worth remembering -- a majority of these delegates were not elected at the precinct level to be McCain delegates. They supported Romney, or maybe Huckabee, or came undecided after being Guiliani or Thompson folk. Their attachment to McCain is something not that deeply felt. Thus the curiosity about Paul and attendance at his rally, and why some of those who eventually voted for McCain may have nonetheless been less than enthusiastic with the tactics employed by both the McCain managers and the party's rules.

Again, show time for us at 3pm, Mitch and Ed are up now. I have had so many people thank us for the NARN here, and let me on behalf of them all say how humbling and gratifying your support has been. You have no idea how much we appreciate your support -- heck, I'll drive through a gallbladder attack to do this!

Unless something extraordinary happens here, that's all from here and I'll return to my usual weekend blog silence. See you Monday.

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