Notes from the floor of the "suspended" convention
When asked, most delegates we spoke with today on the convention floor--that's right, we snuck onto the floor with only a "Press Stand" pass--said they fully understood and respected John McCain's decision to suspend nonessential convention activities. But not Jack Wolfe. The white-bearded immigration absolutist from McAllen, Texas calls them as he sees them. And Republicans, he says, are becoming too "touchy-feely, like the Democrats."
"Hurricanes come every year. They're going to come every year until I die," he said. "If we stopped everything every time one came along, we'd never get anything done."
We also caught up with Reza Goharzad, a correspondent for Radio Iran, an anti-regime station based in Los Angeles. He saw the revised schedule for the first day of the convention in more strategic terms.
"Look around," he said as we sat one row up from the floor. "Ninety-five percent of the delegates are here. The convention isn't being suspended. The only people missing are Bush and Cheney and Condoleeza Rice. They have to act like they are busy monitoring the situation."
He certainly has a point. It's not as if the first day of the convention was really being canceled. If it was, all the delegates would have stayed away, which they didn't. Instead, the two least popular Republicans in the country--Bush and Cheney--were whitewashed from the gala. Which is, in short, quite convenient.