August 31st, 2008
07:55 PM ET
12 years ago

New Orleans party scaled back

ST. PAUL, Minnesota (CNN) – A celebration of New Orleans culture will take on a more somber tone Monday, as plans for a large party at the Republican convention has been scaled back because of Hurricane Gustav.

Gustav is set to make landfall at sunrise, potentially delivering a devastating blow to New Orleans, which is still rebuilding after Hurricane Katrina slammed into the city causing massive death and destruction.

The “New Orleans All-Star Jam-Balaya” was designed to highlight the city’s culture as well as bring attention to the ongoing reconstruction efforts. It is being paid for by a diverse group of companies ranging from Roll Call newspaper, PhRMA, and the National Restaurant Association and featured New Orleans musicians, an open bar and cuisine that has helped to put the city on the map. The musicians will still play, but the drinks are no longer free and they are scaling back on the food.

Instead the focus will now be on raising money for relief organizations that are expected to be overwhelmed once the storm passes as well as educating the 1,500 people that are expected to attend the event about the needs of the region.

“We want to make sure we are talking about what needs to happen for long-term protection of the city and to sustain a long term building effort,” said Emily Byram, executive director of the Friends of New Orleans, which is organizing the event.

soundoff (20 Responses)
  1. S. Boatman

    I Have Many Relatives In The Area. . . . My Prayers In Out To The People There.

    August 31, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  2. Hurricane Supporter

    Raising funds for hurricane relief is time very well spent.

    Obama/Biden 2008

    August 31, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  3. Mature Voter

    Should Hurricane Gustav prove to be a major hurricane to the gulf coast, I believe both campaigns should suspend their activities. At least, in diaster our nation should stand as one.

    August 31, 2008 09:39 pm at 9:39 pm |
  4. BKoi

    Could this possibly be politically motivated ? I really hate to be cynical (yeah ) Where were John McCain and Bush last time ? Why haven"t they rebuilt New Orleans before this ? The Levies SHOULD have been finished by now !!!! Republican spin and pandering now, who would have thought??

    August 31, 2008 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  5. RJ

    WOW! I really respect the Republicans' stance on this. It makes up big-time for the nauseating Obama Vegas style extravanza with Greek columns trying to "crown" Obama, the emperor with no clothes - a title "purchased" with millions of dollars by O-blah-blah's suckered supporters.


    BUT I WON'T!

    August 31, 2008 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  6. McGmmick

    Yes, scaled back enough as they send 8 team members to Alaska to VET their VP choice.

    The word is the McGimmick campaign have discovered some issues due to the fact they did not vet Ms. Plain. Now the GOP are demanding that a vetting process takes place.

    Great judgment McCain

    Another Gimmick brought to you by the McCain Campaign

    The first most important decision and McCain FAILS!

    August 31, 2008 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  7. Sarah Palin=Phyllis Schafly

    Whatever Dems or Repubs do, stay out of New Orleans...they don't need more bodies there on top of the mess that will be there after this horrific storm.

    August 31, 2008 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  8. Cara

    This pretending to care is just more pandering.

    August 31, 2008 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  9. SOL

    CNN should respect the Republican party and leave politics out of the scene for now.

    I think the Republican party would benefit more from having the convention then they will by choosing not to have it due to the New Orleans disaster.

    It is the right thing to do and any respecting caring human being would understand the decision and not turn it into a political move to gain votes.

    Shame on you!

    August 31, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  10. LibraSign - MN

    I heard a reporter at the convention center say " This could be a good game play for the repblicans"

    This is not something the Republicans planned. It is a natural disaster and unfortunate all of the Nation will be impacted.

    CNN should respect the decsision that was made and to not turn this into a political analysis on vote gains.

    Have some respect. What would the media do if they decided to party on? I can only imagine

    August 31, 2008 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  11. Steve Holmes

    McCain is smart enough to let the hand of God work for him.

    Delaying the convention.proceedings so that Bush and Cheney can't make speeches?


    August 31, 2008 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  12. Laurie

    The only thing McCane cares about is winning. What looks good for me? How can I get more votes? How can I use tragedy to benefit me? He already threatens our national security by adding the cheerleader to his ticket.

    August 31, 2008 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  13. Ron

    Funny how the GOP is worried about the storm. They left millions stranded last time, and gave away items set aside for the to government agencies. People are being forced out of FEMA trailers from Katrina and the GOP is acting so concerned about future disasters they haven’t help 3 years after the last one

    August 31, 2008 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  14. Tiffany

    This is what Mccain and the Republicans is suppose to do the right thing to make up for three years ago

    August 31, 2008 11:40 pm at 11:40 pm |
  15. curtis

    Why were they even planning on a "celebration of NOLA culture" before the hurricane? To rub in that the adminstration completely fell down on the job in regards to Katrina? Or just an insincere, too late apology?

    Either way, it's disgusting. But then what else can we expect from a party and administration that is still using September 11th as an excuse/justification for everything?

    August 31, 2008 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  16. Xango 08 & 12

    it is time to concentrate on how WE ALL will HELP the people in our country since they have not been yet helped since Katrina and now Gustav...

    time to put people first

    no other way around

    if the RNC poured their resources there and alos the other politicians we can feel proud of whoever does that..

    WALK the TALK

    August 31, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  17. Ralph

    This storm is going to cause a lot of problems for this nation. I only hope they are better prepared for this one, then they were for Katrina.

    August 31, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  18. SwayingVoter

    Yeah, but why does Sen. McCain refer to the people of New Orleans as "those people" when he made a statement about the convention earlier today. We are going to help "those people" is how he referred to his fellow Americans who are facing another possible lose.

    September 1, 2008 12:07 am at 12:07 am |
  19. Pam

    McCain might make his acceptance speech from the gulf coast even though he isn't the president and has no authority to oversee anything that's going on there. The republican governor of Mississippi invited McCain and Palin to visit an evacuation center there, but didn't invite Obama and Biden. Exactly how is McCain not politicizing this?

    September 1, 2008 12:17 am at 12:17 am |
  20. aware

    Servant leadership puts country first! 🙂

    McCain/Palin 08! 🙂

    September 1, 2008 12:50 am at 12:50 am |