BREAKING: GOP delays start of convention until Tuesday
August 25th, 2012
06:44 PM ET
2 years ago

BREAKING: GOP delays start of convention until Tuesday

Tampa, Florida (CNN) - The Republican National Convention has cancelled the program's first day due to Tropical Storm Isaac, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus announced Saturday.

The convention will convene on Monday and then immediately recess until the following afternoon, Priebus said in a statement.

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"Due to the severe weather reports for the Tampa Bay area, the Republican National Convention will convene on Monday August 27th and immediately recess until Tuesday afternoon, August 28th," Priebus said. "After consulting with Governor Scott, NOAA and local emergency management officials, we are optimistic that we will begin an exciting, robust convention that will nominate the Romney-Ryan ticket."

Vice President Joe Biden had announced plans to campaign in Tampa on Monday and elsewhere on Florida on Tuesday. On Friday evening, the Obama-Biden campaign cancelled his Monday events, and Saturday, the campaign announced cancellation of his Tuesday plans.

GOP officials expect 50,000 people to attend the convention where Mitt Romney will officially accept his party's presidential nomination and make the final turn to the November election.

The delay was brought about because Isaac is expected to be west of Tampa in the Gulf of Mexico early Monday morning – the first day of the weeklong event.

Isaac was forecast to bring rain and wind to the Tampa area on Monday and Tuesday and was expected to increase in intensity and become either a Category 1 or 2 hurricane as it passed west of Tampa in the Gulf of Mexico.

Before the RNC announcement, Florida's Republican Governor Rick Scott announced that he was cancelling his activities at the convention but would remain in Tampa to monitor and coordinate the state's response to the storm.

Wind gusts in Tampa were recorded at 30 mph on Saturday afternoon.

As the convention and storm approached, RNC and government officials stressed their preparedness. "I declared a state of emergency for the state of Florida," Scott told reporters Saturday morning. "That's standard protocol to make sure we can coordinate our efforts with federal, state, and local so we can have the proper response."

On CNN's "Starting Point" Thursday, RNC communications director Sean Spicer said the convention had "contingency plans to deal with weather-related and other circumstances that may occur to ensure that the business can go on at the RNC and Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan will become our nominees."

Officials were speaking with and distributing pamphlets to delegates and other guests as they checked into the over 15,000 area hotel rooms which had been booked, and encouraged those for whom this would be their first hurricane to be careful.

On Saturday afternoon, the storm had sustained winds of 60 mph with 70 mph gusts.


Filed under: 2012 • Florida • Republican National Convention
soundoff (301 Responses)
  1. Anonymous

    Hmmnn, TeaPartyers say Katrina was God's wrath directed at Houston, what do thy say now?

    August 25, 2012 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  2. Don

    I am glad they are doing the responsible thing. Biden too. Anything can happen with a storm like this and every first responder needs to be available and not pulling security detail for polliticians.

    August 25, 2012 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  3. jbnstrose

    Postpone ?? Over high winds ??
    What are you gonna do during a real national crisis ??
    Postpone it ???
    If ya want it THAT bad, then grow some !!!!

    August 25, 2012 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  4. enuff

    What is being done for the average joe? Why is it all about the republicans?

    August 25, 2012 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  5. calvin

    It's called Divine Intervention. LOL.

    August 25, 2012 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  6. jedediah

    This is a sign from God. Evangelists shouldn't have chosen a Mormon and a Catholic.

    August 25, 2012 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  7. zq

    Why delay? This "hurricane" is just another myth like "global warming" made up by scientists to scare rich people.

    August 25, 2012 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  8. T Hiddemen

    Hmnnn . . . TeaPartyers claim that Katrina was God's wrath aimed at New Orleans. What are they saying now?

    August 25, 2012 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  9. WakeUp

    You know if this was the DNC the right wing nuts and Pat Robertson would be saying God was sending a message. How about it right wing nuts, what is your God saying now??

    August 25, 2012 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  10. Your Panties

    Y'all should cancel the entire convention. Go home and wait until November 6th when you can vote for Barack Obama.
    Just Do It.

    August 25, 2012 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  11. Robyn

    I suppose that if Jerry Falwell were available for a pithy comment,
    he would say that God is voicing his political views of the Republican Party.

    That would make Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday
    River of Blood, Plague of Locusts, and Rain of Toads Nights for the Convention.

    Buckle up Tampa, It's going to be a wild ride.

    August 25, 2012 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  12. Eric fox

    fire depts need my help just leave me a E mail i be good

    August 25, 2012 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  13. Fed Up

    Pat Robertson should blame this on God too

    August 25, 2012 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  14. Rawmoney, 2012

    They want to run the country, yet they can't even have the foresight to think that "hey, this is Florida. They get storms here every year. Maybe it wouldn't be a good idea to hold our convention here especially during storm season." They want to run the country yet no one bothered to say, "hey, remember last year when Florida got hit so bad? And the year before? And the year before? Maybe we should rethink our location."

    So if they get elected, is every little thing going to take them by surprise? Is "we didn't know" going to be their mantra? We didn't know the twin towers were going to be targeted. We didn't know that Iraq didn't have wmd.

    Hey, all those austerity programs to cut back on government–WE didn't know they would completely tank the U.S. ecomony. Illegalizing abortion–we didn't know that it would cost 100 billion dollars a year to implement.

    You might as well hire Forest Gump. At least he had a successful shrimp business, even though he was completely dumb.

    August 25, 2012 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  15. Aaron

    Why don't they just "pray" the storm goes away. If I thought an all-powerful supernatural omnipotent god existed (which I don't), that's what I'd be doing..

    August 25, 2012 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  16. animal48

    The republican'ts will say that the storm doesn't exist, it's a left wing media hoax to support the gay agenda. Then, satistied that they have ruled, they will put their heads in their collection rectum and be off to a strip club

    August 25, 2012 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  17. pointless1

    Delay it for as long as you need too....

    August 25, 2012 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  18. herebydesign

    My first thought is this: Why would anyone with half a brain and hopes of electing his candidate to lead our country schedule a convention in Tampa, Florida, at the height of the hurricane season??

    August 25, 2012 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  19. 1nd3p3nd3nt

    i wonder what the 700 club has to say about a hurricane messing with the GOP convention?

    August 25, 2012 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  20. laranex

    The GOP has a lot bigger problems than a hurricane coming ashore.

    August 25, 2012 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  21. CanThinkForMySelf

    God is showing his sense of humor - a hurricane during the RNC

    August 25, 2012 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  22. CanadaONE

    They are thinking of moving the Convention to the Cayman Islands – better weather and no taxes to pay – they got the idea from Romney

    August 25, 2012 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  23. concernedcit

    Why is God punishing us?

    August 25, 2012 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  24. Today

    Isaac delayed until Tuesday..LOL

    August 25, 2012 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  25. Dennis

    This is a bad omen for the GOP and Tea Party knuckleheads.I predict the same for them in the Nov.elections.

    August 25, 2012 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
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