I had planned to do my final post about what the choice of Vice Presidential nominees revealed about each of the candidates, but that seems to have been overtaken by events. Instead this will be about the Republicans using another tragedy for their own selfish interests.
Tomorrow the Republican National Convention will gavel their convention in session, do a bit of back room business (platform, electing officials) and gavel out about two hours later. John McCain claims that they think it would be unseemly to Conventioneer with that hurricane threatening our people. (He didn't think Katrina was much of a problem when he was eating cake with Mr. Bush, as I recall.) The Times explains
Amid extraordinary circumstances that remain extremely uncertain, many questions remain unanswered, including whether Mr. McCain and Mrs. Palin will actually appear at the convention here to accept their party’s nominations and what the schedule might look like for the rest of what had been expected to be a four-day political coronation for Mr. McCain and his vice presidential nominee.Stunning.
Rick Davis, the McCain-Palin campaign manager, said organizers are proceeding on a day-by-day basis, monitoring the course of the storm and its damage.
If they flush the toilets will it produce a surge down the Mississippi to New Orleans? (h/t to Landru for that line)
This, of course, would be the perfect platform from which to speak about the problem, address what needs to be done, and even to ask the American people to help out. They have four nights of prime time coverage on all of the networks and news cable outlets. And they're not sure whether they will show up or not?
My theory is that they are coming apart at the seams. There are women like Kay Bailey Hutchinson and Jodi Rell who were just told "fuck you." There are folks running for office downstream, beyond the Congresional members and wannabes who can't possibly get up there and support the ticket with a straight face, not and hope to win their races, anyway. I can't really see too many folks beyond Mr. McCain's favorite butt-boys, Lindsey Graham (who knew he couldn't be nominated without a wife -- and yes, that means what you think it means) and Joe Lieberman who was apparently vetoed by Karl Rove being able to say "YAY" with a straight face.
Politics is an insider game. Senator McCain was on the margin before, but now that he has publicly said FUCK YOU to such a large segment of the party, I expect it will take a while to get it together. And then there is Governor Palin who has to learn to give a big kick-ass speech between now and Wednesday. (I don't suppose they will have her hubby introducing her.)
Besides all that, it is harder to say "I was a POW for 5 1/2 years" when folks are dying. Good luck with that convention thing, party of Lincoln.
Update - The L. A. Times is compiling a list of no-shows at the convention.
At least 10 incumbent senators, plus several Senate candidates, have sent their regrets. Only three incumbents in hotly contested races, including Kentucky's Mitch McConnell, the Senate minority leader, will join the partygoers.
"It's probably easier to say who is attending," said Rebecca Fisher, spokeswoman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee. But the list is "a moving target," she added. ...
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will bow out to stay in California and deal with a budget stalemate, and Govs. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and Rick Perry of Texas said they would cancel their prime-time convention appearances because of the threat to the Gulf Coast from Hurricane Gustav.
The piece cites many more. Hard to see how they have enough to have a convention.