I just got back from watching and commenting on the RNC at NECN, who had me on as an analyst for the evening apparently unaware that I am an asshat. (See comment to earlier post.)
Anyway, I am baffled; I don't know what John McCain is thinking. His only chance to win this election is to convince people -- that majority of Americans that wants change and is disgusted with the GOP -- that Barack Obama is too risky to vote for.
A few things that might be useful to keep in mind about the GOP delegates as you watch the convention speeches, courtesy of a CBS News/New York Times poll:
--Only 32% are women (down from 43% in 2004)
--93% are white
--72% are self-described "conservative" (up from 63%)
--34% are millionaires (up from 27%)
--30% are Catholic (highest in survey history, beginning 1976)
President Bush will reportedly give an eight-minute speech via satellite for tonight's RNC -- as Obama launches a McCain=Bush ad, naturally. The jowl boys, Lieberman and F. Thompson, have featured slots tonight, while once-loved Rudy gets bumped to tomorrow.
I'll be on NECN talking about it all.
I flew back to sea level today after learning the big news, and spent much of my journey home pondering it and discussing it with people in airports and on planes. My initial reaction, which I still hold, was, "well, that should ensure that Obama wins 40 states."
It's a Hail Mary pass, and although I thought that he probably needs one, I didn't believe he would make one; I thought he would make a safe pick and keep hammering away and hope for the best.
Carl Cameron of FOX News just reported that Tim Pawlenty is NOT the VP pick. So does that leave our man Mitt? Now the buzz is it might be Alaska's "Miss Congeniality" Sarah Palin -- FOX is also reporting that a "mystery flight" flew from Anchorage to Dayton (where the announcement is scheduled in a few hours) overnight.
Do you know in Gillette Stadium, that slim rally/ad strip that runs all the way across from end zone to end zone, between the lower stands and the private box level -- the one that flashes things like "DEE-FENSE!" and "MAKE SOME NOISE!" during the action, and ads for beer and anti-perspirant during the breaks? Invesco Field has something similar, except it's four sets of four slim panels -- anyway, the point is that during Obama's speech those panels were saying things like "Obama/Change/You Can/Believe In," and sometimes the message would change, and sometimes it would flash when people were expected to cheer a lot.
**UPDATE: 10:48 pm - AOL's Political Machine blog states reporting unequivocally that Pawlenty is the nominee. Culture War quotes anonymous sources inside McCain Communications Staff and RNC as saying "95 percent sure" it's Pawlenty. Remember that sourcing, because McCain's sure to deny that his communication staff leaked the nomination tonight.
VIDEO: Obama: The Movie
VIDEO: Barney Smith, Not Smith Barney (or, for that matter, Barney Frank)
VIDEO: Al Gore at Invesco Field
Hey Adam: so if Gallup's three-day rolling average lead was to suddenly spike, say, from 1 point to six points once Wednesday' polling enters the picture, that probably would mean a huge bump just from the first half of the convention, wouldn't it?
I again did not schlep out to the GOP opposition press conference this morning, which again was held in the new location which would have required me to waste several hours of this historic, not to mention beautiful, final day of the Democratic National Convention. I watched on live streaming video, to watch supposed VP finalist Tim Pawlenty, gov of RNC host state Minnesota, take his turn as yet another Republican with no foreign policy experience question Barack Obama's experience and judgment to be commander-in-chief.
At a press conference Monday I had an interesting conversation with some reporters, the upshot of which was that it is not widely known just how little access John McCain gives to the media now -- and that it will be interesting to see how that plays when the real campaign stretch begins a week from Friday. That's when the big media will begin really tagging along daily with the campaign (until now, it's remained much more a Hillary/Obama obsession), and it shouldn't take long for them to start getting seriously annoyed at never, ever, getting to ask any questions of the candidate, let alone get a 'straight talk' answer.
I have long predicted that Obama would come out of the convention with a solid lead, close to double digits, and never fall behind again. We'll see how right or wrong I turn out to be; I win some and lose some. But I certainly think that tonight's program went a long way toward making me look smart. What do you think?
I was down with the Massachusetts delegation when they officially announced their votes to the convention. State senate president Therese Murray got to do the state-bragging honors, and announced the 52 Clinton votes; Gov Patrick announced the 65 Obama votes. Murray included in her intro shout-outs to the Red Sox, Celtics, and Patriots -- not the Bruins -- which drew good-natured boos from the New York delegates seated directly below Massachusetts.
Here's what I know, or think I know, about the delegate voting. This morning at the breakfast meetings, delegations gathered official votes from delegates; delegates could continue to submit (and change) their votes as the day went on.
Hillary Clinton has reportedly "released" her pledged delegates, told them that she has cast her vote for Obama, but that they are free to do as they please.