Eyewitness News

At the Republican National Convention

Monday, August 27, 2012
Bill Ritters daily take on the news.

Bill Ritter's daily take on the news.

So what if they cancelled a convention and everyone still came? That's what's happening in Tampa today, as the Republicans gambled that Tropical Storm (soon to be Hurricane) Isaac threatened the Tampa Bay area, and then veered west.

They decided to cancel Monday's session, thinking that the squalls would be dangerous for delegates, and that security would be overwhelmed with damage elsewhere.

Didn't happen.

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Now the Grand Old Party is trying figure out how to hold their confab - usually a celebratory fest - amidst the damage that could be caused by a hurricane.

And a hurricane headed towards the one city where the last Republican President didn't exactly shine - New Orleans.

President Obama - who wouldn't normally take center stage during the GOP convention (other than as a source of derision) - might very well do just that if Isaac causes destruction.

And what about Mitt Romney, who saw this convention as a way to redefine himself for the American people? Or, as one political analyst told us - have a second chance to make a first impression.

He's been practicing his speech at a prep school in New Hampshire, side by side with his wife, Ann, who is set to speak Tuesday night. Hard to image that Isaac won't be part of his address. How big, remains to be seen.

There was talk of canceling this convention, depending on what Isaac does - but that doesn't seem realistic. It is likely that the celebrations will be muted a bit, but that's about all we know. Audibles are what we can expect as this week continues.

The bigger battles that we expected - the battle for the heart and soul of the Republican Party - are likely not to happen. And the demonstrations that were planned? Well, so far at least, we haven't seen them.

What we have seen is the biggest security presence at a convention anyone can recall.

I'm just sayin'.

If you have questions about the convention, please send them to me by clicking here.

I'll have the latest from Tampa, tonight at 11. We'll also have any breaking news, plus Meteorologist Lee Goldberg's AccuWeather forecast, and Rob Powers with the night's sports. I hope you can join Sade Baderinwa and me, tonight at 11.

BILL RITTER

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