Convention up in the air

Rick Moran
Since I am covering the convention for Pajamas Media, I thought I would sneak in a few blog posts at AT to let our readers get a feel for what's happening here in St. Paul.

I wish I could say that someone knows what is happening regarding the Republican Convention but frankly, about the only thing that's certain is that everything is hanging, suspended in mid air, as the McCain campaign continues to assess the political fallout from holding a convention when thousands of people are suffering from the effects of Hurricane Gustav.

I sympathize with McCain but he is acting like Union general George McClellan rather than U.S. Grant. McClellan was always worried what Robert E. Lee was going to do which reduced his options and narrowed his ability for offensive action. Grant didn't much care what his opponent was doing, he just planned for an attack and set it in motion.

I believe McCain is worrying too much about what the Democrats will say if Republicans go on with the convention's full schedule. They are going to criticize either way so why not just hold the convention anyway and let the Democrats go hang?

The stakes are huge. John McCain's risky move in choosing Sarah Palin for his running mate seems to be paying off - at least in the short term. The most recent
CNN Poll has the race at 49-48 for Obama - so much for a convention bounce. And with the base of the party solidly behind his choice while the Democrats stumble all over themselves trying to criticize her, it would appear McCain has delivered a masterstroke that has changed the very nature of the campaign.

But with 63 days to go before the election, the questions surrounding Palin - legitimate questions not the internet smears being spread by Andrew Sullivan - will only intensify. She has a steep learning curve, indeed, if she wishes to appear reasonably equal to Joe Biden on foreign policy during the debate. And she must show the public her strong qualities of personal warmth and a firm grasp of issues like energy and the economy.

She will do well. She is smart, tough, and principled. But whether it will be enough to convince a public - only 29% of whom believe at the moment she is capable of being president - skeptical of her abilities remains to be seen.
Since I am covering the convention for Pajamas Media, I thought I would sneak in a few blog posts at AT to let our readers get a feel for what's happening here in St. Paul.

I wish I could say that someone knows what is happening regarding the Republican Convention but frankly, about the only thing that's certain is that everything is hanging, suspended in mid air, as the McCain campaign continues to assess the political fallout from holding a convention when thousands of people are suffering from the effects of Hurricane Gustav.

I sympathize with McCain but he is acting like Union general George McClellan rather than U.S. Grant. McClellan was always worried what Robert E. Lee was going to do which reduced his options and narrowed his ability for offensive action. Grant didn't much care what his opponent was doing, he just planned for an attack and set it in motion.

I believe McCain is worrying too much about what the Democrats will say if Republicans go on with the convention's full schedule. They are going to criticize either way so why not just hold the convention anyway and let the Democrats go hang?

The stakes are huge. John McCain's risky move in choosing Sarah Palin for his running mate seems to be paying off - at least in the short term. The most recent
CNN Poll has the race at 49-48 for Obama - so much for a convention bounce. And with the base of the party solidly behind his choice while the Democrats stumble all over themselves trying to criticize her, it would appear McCain has delivered a masterstroke that has changed the very nature of the campaign.

But with 63 days to go before the election, the questions surrounding Palin - legitimate questions not the internet smears being spread by Andrew Sullivan - will only intensify. She has a steep learning curve, indeed, if she wishes to appear reasonably equal to Joe Biden on foreign policy during the debate. And she must show the public her strong qualities of personal warmth and a firm grasp of issues like energy and the economy.

She will do well. She is smart, tough, and principled. But whether it will be enough to convince a public - only 29% of whom believe at the moment she is capable of being president - skeptical of her abilities remains to be seen.