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. Bman

    Great. are they going to cancel Romney's Speech?

    August 25, 2012 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  2. Zerz

    Pat Robertson can pray this away no problem.

    August 25, 2012 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  3. Beverly - NYC

    Did someone pray for rain or does mother nature hate Republicans? Second convention to get rained out.

    August 25, 2012 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  4. Libsrtyrants

    Looks like the Occusquatters & Anarchists might get wet.

    August 25, 2012 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  5. rh

    And 9 months later, the congressional aides will have babies.

    August 25, 2012 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  6. liberal christian

    An act of God! God hates Conservatives!

    August 25, 2012 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  7. julie

    Hmm looks like God is sending them a message.

    August 25, 2012 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  8. gary

    save the resources ... call off the convention, tell Mitt to go home, .... Obama will be POTUS four more years, :)

    August 25, 2012 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  9. Potrzebie

    This is proof positive that God hates the Republicans! I prayed that this would happen so this proves that prayer works too!

    August 25, 2012 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  10. lou

    God hates the GOP

    August 25, 2012 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  11. Water into beer

    Gee...I thought God was on their ticket. I guess ol' Mitt's magic underwear doesn't have a flotation device.

    August 25, 2012 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  12. Montykoolaid

    Wow, even God is trying to cancel their convention.

    August 25, 2012 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  13. Lifeis,,,

    I guess thats a sign of how messy is gonna get for republican party..lol

    August 25, 2012 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  14. babooph

    I hope they have enough Cayman Islands flags ready....

    August 25, 2012 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  15. Daedalus

    ...And nothing of value was lost.

    August 25, 2012 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  16. rmd

    First man to walk on the moon passes and this garbage is the top headline? What intern us running the newsroom today?

    August 25, 2012 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  17. Thomas

    Is God punishing the GOP ?

    August 25, 2012 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  18. apple pie

    It's an act of God. Get the message? Repent or leave.

    August 25, 2012 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  19. Dennis

    Perhaps a message to the GOP from god?

    August 25, 2012 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  20. lovehate

    They should do it as planned so we can watch live as the storm rips them all apart

    August 25, 2012 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  21. paul

    hope this will convince the self righteous GOP that God is not with them?

    August 25, 2012 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  22. David M

    Why in the round world would the GOP select a Florida venue for their convention? It's the middle of hurricane season and they thought this was a good idea?? I think it's indicative of the decision-making ability that is supposedly representing us these days. Pitiful. At least the Dems selected a spot that is relatively hurricane free, but their decision making skills leave a bit to be desired as well. And we wonder why the political process has essentially fallen apart.

    August 25, 2012 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  23. The Prophet

    Jesus doesn't take kindly to hypocrisy. Isaac was a sign in the Bible too.

    August 25, 2012 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  24. Matthew

    Missed opportunity to abandon the party platform.

    August 25, 2012 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  25. Jesse

    Issac must be an Obama supporter.

    August 25, 2012 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
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